With the successful launch of the Global Precipitation Measurement satellite in February, we're one step closer to a tasty new data stream on rain and snow around the world.

Don't get too giddy though, weather geeks. The anticipated gap in polar weather data is looming as the current satellites reach end-of-life and the replacement satellite not scheduled for launch until 2017. Even as the depth and quality of data improves, the coverage could start getting spotty in 2016.

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