Earth Matters

Cloud Challenge 2022

January 14th, 2022 by Kathryn Hansen

Cloud enthusiasts and citizen scientists take note: For the next month, you are invited to help NASA investigate clouds during the NASA GLOBE Cloud Challenge 2022: Clouds in a Changing Climate.

There are two ways to participate. The first involves using the GLOBE Observer app to make cloud observations, preferably timed with observations being made by satellites as they pass overhead. Scientists can use such observations to help identify clouds that can be difficult to distinguish in satellite imagery.

You can also participate via the NASA GLOBE CLOUD GAZE. In this app-based program, users look at the photos, identify cloud types, and tag various other elements.

“Are you seeing more precipitating clouds? Are you seeing less of them? Are there more thick, blanketed clouds that cast more shadows, or are you seeing more of those thin high clouds that are ice and don’t cast shadows but hold the heat in the atmosphere?” said Marilé Colón Robles, atmospheric scientist and lead for the GLOBE Clouds Team at NASA’s Langley Research Center. “Each cloud type affects Earth’s energy balance differently. That’s what we’re trying to understand.”

Read more about the challenge in this feature story from NASA Langley. Also, visit the GLOBE Observer website to download the apps and find additional resources—videos, Instagram reels, webinars, and more.

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