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Applied Sciences

NASA satellites and sensors constantly take the pulse of our planet, measuring how Earth changes by the day, season, year, and decade. Researchers and resource managers analyze those measurements and apply them on local and regional scales to better manage things like our food and water supplies, health, safety, land use, and ecosystems. NASA data is also used by other government agencies to help with responses to natural disasters and emergencies around the country and the world.

Early Detection of Algae Yields Savings
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Early Detection of Algae Yields Savings

Satellites can spot some blooms earlier, resulting in significant savings on health care, lost work hours, and other economic costs.

Published Jul 29, 2020

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Of Mosquitoes and Models: Tracking Disease by Satellite
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Of Mosquitoes and Models: Tracking Disease by Satellite

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.

Published Jul 21, 2020

Life Human Presence Remote Sensing

Methane Emissions Continue to Rise
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Methane Emissions Continue to Rise

Rapid growth from 2008–2017 built upon the rise in the atmospheric concentration of the gas that has been happening for more than a century.

Published Jul 14, 2020

Image of the Day Atmosphere Remote Sensing

Scouting Watering Holes from Space
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Scouting Watering Holes from Space

Satellites may make it easier for nomadic herders in Senegal to survive the lean season.

Published Jul 1, 2020

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Heat and Fire Scorches Siberia
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Heat and Fire Scorches Siberia

Fires are raging in eastern Siberia in the midst of an unusually long-lived heat wave.

Published Jun 23, 2020

Image of the Day Atmosphere Heat Land Drought Fires Remote Sensing Temperature Extremes

Temperatures Predict Bird Biodiversity
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Temperatures Predict Bird Biodiversity

Small birds prefer winter landscapes that have larger thermal differences, likely because they offer more opportunities to find refuge from the cold.

Published Jun 3, 2020

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A Fiery Month in Zulia
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A Fiery Month in Zulia

After dry weather parched the soil and vegetation, large fires burned in the northwestern Venezuela state.

Published Apr 28, 2020

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Tornado Leaves a Mark on Rural Texas
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Tornado Leaves a Mark on Rural Texas

Powerful thunderstorms moving through eastern Texas and western Louisiana spawned several tornadoes, including some that caused major damage.

Published Apr 27, 2020

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Mapping Moose Populations in Russia
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Mapping Moose Populations in Russia

Researchers using vegetation data to explain moose population dynamics run into a hidden variable and a possible signature of history.

Published Apr 24, 2020

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Tracking Water for the Navajo Nation
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Tracking Water for the Navajo Nation

A new web tool designed by NASA applied scientists could help the tribe anticipate and respond to drought.

Published Apr 16, 2020

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Could Satellites Help Head Off a Locust Invasion?
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Could Satellites Help Head Off a Locust Invasion?

Researchers are using satellite data to understand where locusts may spread during the largest infestation in eastern Africa in decades.

Published Mar 27, 2020

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Satellite Observations Aid Bison Management
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Satellite Observations Aid Bison Management

A new study has found a link between the effects of climate change, the productivity of grasslands, and the proliferation of bison in Yellowstone National Park.

Published Mar 11, 2020

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Habitat at Risk for Snow-Dependent Organisms
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Habitat at Risk for Snow-Dependent Organisms

Some species will be exposed to more cold winter air without the insulating protection of snow cover.

Published Mar 5, 2020

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Reflecting on a Tumultuous Amazon Fire Season
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Reflecting on a Tumultuous Amazon Fire Season

The reality of science, statistics, and satellites is that a deep understanding of the causes, effects, and severity of a fire season takes time.

Published Mar 3, 2020

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Airborne Nitrogen Dioxide Plummets Over China
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Airborne Nitrogen Dioxide Plummets Over China

NO2 amounts have dropped with the coronavirus quarantine, Chinese New Year, and a related economic slowdown.

Published Feb 28, 2020

Image of the Day Atmosphere Life Dust and Haze Human Presence Remote Sensing

ECOSTRESS Sees Plants Waking Up
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ECOSTRESS Sees Plants Waking Up

An instrument on the International Space Station observed vegetation beginning to stir on summer mornings near Lake Superior.

Published Feb 25, 2020

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Rivers Are Getting Less Icy
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Rivers Are Getting Less Icy

The window of time available to make and use ice roads is closing.

Published Feb 18, 2020

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Drought Hits Thailand
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Drought Hits Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is affecting agriculture and drinking water in the region.

Published Feb 14, 2020

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Climate Change Could Trigger More Landslides in High Mountain Asia
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Climate Change Could Trigger More Landslides in High Mountain Asia

Warming temperatures will likely cause more intense rainfall, leading to increased landslide activity.

Published Feb 11, 2020

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Polar Bears Struggle as Sea Ice Declines
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Polar Bears Struggle as Sea Ice Declines

A new study shows that polar bears are spending less time on sea ice, leading them to fast longer, become thinner and have fewer cubs.

Published Feb 3, 2020

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Patchwork of Corn in the Snow
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Patchwork of Corn in the Snow

In the wake of a potent winter storm in late November in the U.S. Midwest, an unusual pattern turned up in satellite imagery.

Published Dec 6, 2019

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Night Lights Can Disrupt Wildlife
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Night Lights Can Disrupt Wildlife

A new study shows that nocturnal animals are less active when the nights are too bright with electric lighting.

Published Oct 23, 2019

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A Flash Drought Dries the Southeast
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A Flash Drought Dries the Southeast

After a wet spring, a quick-onset drought has parched fields.

Published Oct 22, 2019

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New Map Shows Risk of Sunburn Across the U.S.
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New Map Shows Risk of Sunburn Across the U.S.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is using NASA data to help the public better understand their UV exposure.

Published Aug 6, 2019

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Water Cycle is Speeding Up Over Much of the U.S.
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Water Cycle is Speeding Up Over Much of the U.S.

Scientists have developed a new way to measure water cycle intensity over time.

Published Jul 25, 2019

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Measuring Movement from the Ridgecrest Quake
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Measuring Movement from the Ridgecrest Quake

Remote sensing scientists are getting better at measuring such events and showing how they disrupt and move the land surface.

Published Jul 23, 2019

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Study Projects Troubles for 1700 Vertebrate Species
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Study Projects Troubles for 1700 Vertebrate Species

Researchers examined how human land use will affect species habitats around the world.

Published Jul 19, 2019

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Green Space is Good for Mental Health
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Green Space is Good for Mental Health

New study uses satellite and demographic data to show how the prolonged presence of green space is important for a healthy society.

Published Jul 15, 2019

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Mapping the Land Between the Tides
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Mapping the Land Between the Tides

Harnessing 30 years of Landsat data, researchers have created the first three-dimensional model of Australia’s entire coastline.

Published Jul 1, 2019

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NASA Helps Warn of Harmful Algae in Lakes, Reservoirs
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NASA Helps Warn of Harmful Algae in Lakes, Reservoirs

With limited resources to monitor often-unpredictable blooms, water managers are turning to new technologies to detect and keep track of hazards.

Published Jun 21, 2019

Image of the Day Water Remote Sensing