success stories

NESDIS IT Services for JPSS Ground, GRAVITE, and Field Terminal Support


GAMA-1 began in 2009 supporting this NESDIS Program.  We support the implementation of data center capabilities supporting satellite data ingest, processing, and distribution, and implementation of centralized NOC/SOC monitoring for three (3) different FISMA systems, allowing leveraging/sharing of existing tools and development of web-based asset management system.

We ensure project-level support for the mission of developing/operating NOAA’s next-generation Polar Orbiting Satellite System, while ensuring alignment with overarching program objectives, budgets, and timelines. We provide PM support throughout the project’s lifecycle from project initiation to closing using PMBOK practices to successfully deliver projects on-time, within budget.


GAMA-1 uses our ISO 9001, ISO 20000, and ISO 27001 certifications to instill continual process improvements such as technology assessments, systems engineering and independent test and evaluation activities. Using our ISO 27001 methodology, we integrated risk-mitigation practices throughout our JPSS project management methodology. In the last tech refresh project, GRAVITE/FTS implemented new and updated products, replaced government banned products, and end-of-life technology/solutions in order to meet the mission requirements.

GAMA-1 manages 75 VMS & 82 on-premise Windows and Red Hat Linux systems.  We use out-of-band management to manage system hardware components. We use DELL DRAC to remotely manage servers. We update server and HW BIOS and firmware to the latest stable versions. We use best practices, our team troubleshoots multi operations system environments and monitors the growth of the system, adding resources like CPU, memory, software, storage and/ or network capacity when necessary. Our SAs monitor and measure Linux based system performance with tools like NAGIOS, ManageEngine, syslog server and ArcSight to review system logs and activity.

We leveraged cloud-native services to provision and orchestrate servers in the cloud.  Images were built in accordance with the system baseline. Extended our tools to include NOAA required common control (ECMO, ArcSight) for configuration and system monitoring and configuration enforcement.   We monitor performance, usage and cost to ensure optimal configuration and operations. 

We support Big Data SAN storage systems including SUN and NetApp. Big data type of storage as the system is required to host science data sets for process, hosting and distribution.We support distributed file systems leveraging storage HW solutions such as; IBM GPFS and HD5 to maximize performance for data processing. 

GAMA-1 created a Test Bed pilot VDI solution using Citrix which is now operational and performing as required to support admin users. 

We establish a performance-oriented baseline and monitor for deviations. Any deviations immediately trigger real-time email alerts to system administrators or appropriate personnel for immediate investigation. 

Our engineers possess in-depth knowledge of GRAVITE complex IBM clustered storage. We support dynamic growth of that storage, and the tuning of storage systems to meet latency, performance and capacity requirements. We implement cross-training initiatives to remove single points of failure in IT staff resources or knowledge and prepare for new future technologies.


Major accomplishments include the upgrade of the GRAVITE system for new satellites and subsequent data collection through 2020, improved interagency A&A, improved security footprint and the deployment of a NESDIS SharePoint service in addition to improving system performance, resource utilization and cost savings through the use of cloud services.

We provided the technical design requirements and oversaw the upgrade of the GRAVITE system for a complex clustered computing system able to store 3 petabytes of data. This new system supports GRAVITE for new satellites and subsequent data collection through 2020. The upgrade was completed within an aggressive project timeframe and around facility maintenance freezes as a result of satellite launches. 

GAMA-1 has consistently met or exceeded performance metrics established in SLAs, enabling NESDIS to benefit from 99.99% service availability; 99.97% network availability, 99.99% reliability, 100% critical/non-critical OS maintenance and patching, 100% Internet access, and 99.98% network connectivity.

GAMA-1 participated in the GRAVITE Cloud Studies with the proof of concept Forklift migration, and the follow-up Forklift+. With the Forklift cloud migration, our system and network engineers built a scaled-down version of the existing in-premise IBM GPFS storage and computing environment in the cloud. The forklift migration approach was the quickest and cost-effective to achieve cloud study objectives without a cloud-native design. This allowed the GRAVITE program to quickly and effectively ingest, process and distribute data in the cloud. With Forklift+ the GAMA-1 team supported the GRAVITE system adopt cloud-native services in the cloud to optimize and improve resource usage, achieve compute/storage scalability, reduce cost, and tune performance.

NOAA Satellites
  • SANs storage including configuration, installing patches, installing upgrades, system reboots, troubleshooting, and monitoring.
  • Perform on-going storage capacity assessment and review trends to forecast potential issues.
  • Interpret system performance data, conduct performance analysis, and provide recommended capacity planning improvements.
  • Evaluation of cloud (AWS) services as an alternative to on-premise IT services.
  • Monitors server and shared storage performance, resource utilization, and availability using tools including ManageEngine OpManager and IBM Spectrum Scale Management Server.
  • Support enterprise systems maintenance and repair services in support of the AD directory service.
2009 – Present