Image from TERRA
Wed, 10 Oct 2018 13:03 EDT

More than 400 miles above Earth, a satellite the size of a school bus is earning its frequent flyer miles. On Oct. 6, NASA’s Terra completed 100,000 orbits around Earth. Terra, which launched Dec. 18, 1999, is projected to continue operation into the 2020s.

Image from TERRA
Fri, 14 Sep 2018 01:33 EDT

NASA's MISR instrument captures Hurricane Florence just off the East Coast. Data from two of its nine cameras is combined to show the storm in 3D

Image from TERRA
Mon, 27 Aug 2018 16:33 EDT

For the first time ever, measurements from NASA Earth-observing research satellites are being used to help combat a potential outbreak of life-threatening cholera. Humanitarian teams in Yemen are targeting areas identified by a NASA-supported project that precisely forecasts high-risk regions based on environmental conditions observed from space.

Citizen Science

The Citizens and Remote Sensing Observation Network (CARSON) is designed to show citizen scientists how to explore satellite data to make wide-scale environmental observations. Each chapter of the CARSON guide includes instructions for a local observation and an extension to make the same observation on a global scale using satellite data.

Air Quality

Track visibility from the ground, and then use satellite images to identify pollution coming into your region from other places. This activity also includes extensions for other air quality observations.

Nitrogen is a common pollutant found in streams. It fuels algae growth, which can lead to dead zones where little can live. Citizens measure nitrogen concentrations in their local waterways and compare those concentrations to phytoplankton growth in the ocean nearest their watershed.

Precipitation

Throughout history, humans have strived to understand and even control weather and climate. By developing an understanding of the patterns of rainfall, scientists are making possible increasingly accurate weather, flood and drought forecasts. This activity connects backyard observations of rainfall to satellite measurements of rain to study both local and broad precipitation patterns.

Earth Science Labs

These citizen science activities have been adapted into Earth science labs and lessons designed for high school or advanced middle school students. It may be used to support national science education standards NS 9-12.6, personal and social perspectives.