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The most advanced weather satellite ever built rocketed into space Saturday night, part of an $11 billion effort to revolutionize forecasting and save lives. The new GOES-R spacecraft will track U.S. weather as never before: hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding, volcanic ash clouds, wildfires, lightning storms, even solar flares. “For the American public, that will mean faster, more accurate weather forecasts and warnings,” said Stephen Volz, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s director of satellites, as reported by the Associated Press.

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