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GOES 15 during pre-launch processing
Mission type Weather satellite
Operator NOAA / NASA
COSPAR ID 2010-008A
SATCAT no. 36411
Mission duration 10 years (planned)
Elapsed: 8 years, 5 months, 11 days
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft type GOES-N series
Bus BSS-601
Manufacturer Boeing
ITT Corporation
Power 2.3 kilowatts from solar array
Start of mission
Launch date 4 March 2010, 23:57 (2010-03-04UTC23:57Z) UTC
Rocket Delta IV-M+(4,2)
Launch site Cape Canaveral SLC-37B
Contractor United Launch Alliance
Orbital parameters
Reference system Geocentric
Regime Geostationary
Longitude 135° West
Semi-major axis 42,166 kilometres (26,201 mi)
Perigee 35,791.0 kilometres (22,239.5 mi)
Apogee 35,800.4 kilometres (22,245.3 mi)
Inclination 0.2º
Period 1,436.2 minutes
GOES 15 launches from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station SLC-37B, March 4, 2010.

GOES 15, previously known as GOES-P, is an American weather satellite, which forms part of the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) system operated by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The spacecraft was constructed by Boeing, and is the last of three GOES satellites to be based on the BSS-601 bus. It was launched in 2010, while the other BSS-601 GOES satellites -- GOES 13 and GOES 14 -- were launched in May 2006 and June 2009 respectively.[1] It was the sixteenth GOES satellite to be launched.

GOES 15 was launched atop a Delta IV-M+(4,2) rocket flying from Space Launch Complex 37B at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.[2][3] The launch occurred at 23:57 GMT on 4 March 2010, forty minutes into a sixty-minute launch window. Upon reaching geostationary orbit on 16 March, it was redesignated GOES 15.[3][4] On December 6, 2011, it was activated as the GOES West satellite, replacing GOES 11.[5]

At launch, the mass of the satellite was 3,238 kilograms (7,139 lb). It has a design life of ten years. Power is supplied by a single gallium arsenide solar panel, which provides up to 2.3 kilowatts of power. A 24 cell nickel hydrogen battery is used to provide power when the satellite is not in sunlight.[6] Instruments aboard GOES 15 include a five channel multispectral imager to capture visible light and infrared images of the continental United States, a sounder to take readings of atmospheric temperature and moisture, a solar x-ray imager to detect solar flares, and instruments to monitor the magnetosphere, cosmic background radiation and charged particles.[6]


Launch video (5 mins 30 secs)


  1. ^ Krebs, Gunter. "GOES N, O, P, Q". Gunter's Space Page. Retrieved 4 March 2010. 
  2. ^ "GOES-P Launch Blog". NASA. Retrieved 2010-03-04. 
  3. ^ a b Ray, Justin. "Mission Status Center". Delta Launch Report. Spaceflight Now. Retrieved 19 March 2010. 
  4. ^ "LIVE: Delta IV set to launch GOES-P weather satellite". NASAspaceflight.com. Retrieved 4 March 2010. 
  5. ^ "NOAA activates GOES-15 satellite; deactivates GOES-11 after nearly 12 years in orbit". NOAA. Retrieved December 7, 2011. 
  6. ^ a b "GOES-P Mission Operations Booklet" (PDF). United Launch Alliance. Archived from the original (PDF) on 17 July 2011. Retrieved 4 March 2010. 

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