It may seem that once a satellite is successfully launched, the work is done. But there’s a lot more that goes into making sure it’s ready to provide data for your local weather forecast. The GOES-16 satellite is currently undergoing post-launch testing. What does that mean? Launching a satellite is like opening a new restaurant. Post-launch testing is like a soft opening with a limited audience, which allows for trouble-shooting and preparing for the grand opening. During post-launch testing, there are periodic, planned data outages that are necessary to perform specific verification and validation functions. These outages are generally brief and part of normal post-launch testing, and they are part of the reason it’s important not to depend on GOES-16 data for operational needs during the testing period . Learn more about post-launch testing in this feature story .