The U. S. Weather Bureau makes copies of meteorological satellite data available to all as soon as feasible after acquisition. Archiving picture data has introduced new problems in controlling resolution and gray scale, which are quality factors not encountered in archiving digital weather data.
Copies of satellite pictures are obtainable from the Weather Bureau's National Weather Records Center in 35 mm roll film format. Pictures from recent and future near-polar orbiting satellites are also obtainable as assemblages on 8½ × 11 inch sheet film. Catalogues of picture data from each satellite describe data available and assist in determining geographical location of pictures. TIROS medium-resolution radiation data are archived on digital magnetic tape, and are obtainable as tape copies, or in various printed formats.
The Weather Bureau's TOS operational satellite system will begin in early 1966. Data processing procedures will be designed to satisfy operational needs, but all data will be archived in formats developed for TIROS or Nimbus, and with increased emphasis on digitized picture data.