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Look At the Sky, Forecast the Weather:
			Meteorological Satellites as the Foundation of Weather Forecasting Look At the Sky, Forecast the Weather:
			Meteorological Satellites as the Foundation of Weather Forecasting
Masamitsu Morita, Certified Weather Forecaster Masamitsu Morita, Certified Weather Forecaster
Profile Masamitsu Morita is Japan's most famous weather forecaster, and also the Representative Director of the Weather Map Company, which he founded in 1992. Morita started his career at the Tokai branch of the Japan Weather Association in 1969, and in 1974 was transferred to the association's headquarters in Tokyo. In March 1992, he left the association and became Japan's first freelance weather forecaster. Well-known for his cheerful and straightforward commentary, Morita has appeared on many TV programs. He is currently in charge of weather forecasting for
Japan's new weather satellite, MTSAT-1R(Multi-functional Transport Satellite 1 Replacement), which is the successor of the Himawari (Japanese Geostationary Meteorological Satellite; GMS), was launched on February 26. What are your expectations for the new satellite?
I must say that today's infrared satellite images are not so good. I hear that the next satellite will have a new infrared sensor, and I am hoping they will make it possible to discern three-dimensional structures more accurately, with clear infrared and optical images.
Also, doing observations every 30 minutes instead of every hour will give us much greater precision. This will be a benefit to weather forecasting.

Photo MTSAT-1R MTSAT-1R(Multi-functional Transport Satellite 1 Replacement) is designed for air-traffic control and weather observation. The project is led by the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, and will succeed the weather satellite Himawari-5(GMS-5). MTSAT-1R will provide more frequent observations(every 30 minutes instead of every hour), and more precise images. Also, thanks to its additional infrared sensor, low-level clouds will be easier to detect at night.
What is the importance of weather satellites to forecasting?
Data from meteorological satellites is the most important thing for weather forecasting. Radar gives valuable information on rain activity, but with satellite images of cloud formations we can get a better idea of how the weather will develop. I would say that satellites allow us to do about 70 per cent of the job of weather forecasting. If it were not for them, we could not forecast or report on weather nearly as well.
People used to say that fishermen knew how to predict weather, as they were accustomed to reading the sky and cloud formations. With the unaided eye, humans can see, at most, 20 to 30 kilometers of sky. A weather satellite like Himawari(GMS) can scan several thousand kilometers. So satellites are several hundred times better than us at observation; their precision is much greater. People used to predict weather based on their experience, by observing nature. Today, we can do the same thing by looking at images taken by weather satellites.

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