One Fort Wayne company is essential to giving weather information to people across the world. If it wasn't for the work done at ITT Exelis, there is no way meteorologists would know what the weather is like on a day to day basis.
We spoke with Eric Webster, Vice President of Weather Systems for ITT Exelis. He said, "The space satellite instruments we build here, help you, and others to know what's happening in your weather every single day."
This is especially important during severe weather because these satellite instruments, from right here in Fort Wayne, let you know when storms are coming and tracks them as they move in.
"So those images you see on TV of a hurricane or when there is a tornado forecast, all have models and information that our satellite sensors are providing to national as well as local meteorologists," said Webster.
Meteorologists can explain and show people about the weather, along with predict future events, thanks in part to the satellite instruments made by Exelis. Many people are surprised to know these instruments come from northeast Indiana.
We took to the streets of downtown Fort Wayne to ask people if they knew about ITT Exelis. The people we talked to were surprised to learn that the company is based in Northeast Indiana.
Exelis employs more than 400 people in Fort Wayne ranging from scientists to engineers to software experts. The instruments are designed and hand made, so they can last in space for up to 10 years!
The size of the instruments vary, said Webster. "Some are as small as a roll on suitcase, and others are as big as a front loading washing machine."
The things that they do are so top secret, we weren't even allowed inside. If you think it sounds complicated...it sure is.
Webster said, "Most folks kid about being rocket scientists, and we like to say our folks are actually smarter than rocket scientists, cause the rocket part is the easy part."
So next time you see a satellite image on television or online, you will know it was made possible because of ITT Exelis.