A few decades ago, the idea of predicting a disease outbreak via satellite was science fiction. But today, researchers can use environmental data to predict when and where some diseases are likely to spread.
Chlorophyll is used by algae and other phytoplankton--the grass of the sea--to convert sunlight and carbon dioxide into sugars. These maps show chlorophyll concentrations in the ocean, revealing where phytoplankton are thriving.
Satellite images of Earth at night have been a curiosity for the public and a tool of fundamental research for at least 25 years. They have provided a broad, beautiful picture, showing how humans have shaped the planet and lit up the darkness.
Industrialization has brought incredible societal advances and difficult pollution problems. From space, we can see skies clearing in some regions and darkening in others. The thin blue line of our atmosphere is still quite vulnerable.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live in a different part of the world? What would the weather be like? What kinds of animals would you see? Which plants live there? By investigating these questions, you are learning about biomes.
These maps depict anomalies in land surface temperatures (LSTs); that is, how much hotter or cooler a region was compared to the long-term average. LST anomalies can indicate heat waves or cold spells.
Airborne aerosols can cause or prevent cloud formation and harm human health. These maps depict aerosol concentrations in the air based on how the tiny particles reflect or absorb visible and infrared light.
NASA has a unique vantage point for observing the beauty and wonder of Earth and for making sense of it. The images in this book tell a story of a 4.5-billion-year-old planet where there is always something new to see.
Net radiation is the balance between incoming and outgoing energy at the top of the atmosphere. It is the total energy available to influence climate after light and heat are reflected, absorbed, or emitted by clouds and land.
These maps show the ‘metabolism” of Earth’s plants and trees. Net primary productivity is the difference between the amount of carbon dioxide absorbed during photosynthesis minus the amount released by respiration.
NASA satellites and sensors constantly take the pulse of our planet. Researchers apply those observations on local and regional scales to better manage things like food and water supplies, health, safety, land use, and ecosystems.