For the first time in more than a decade, five NASA Earth science missions will be launched into space in the same year, opening new and improved remote eyes to monitor a changing planet. According to a release, the five launches, including two to the
The first NASA Earth science mission of 2014 is the
OCO-2, managed by
With the November launch of
SMAP will launch from Vandenberg onboard a Delta II rocket. JPL manages the mission.
"On our home planet Earth, water is an essential requirement for life and for most human activities. We must understand the details of how water moves within and between the atmosphere, the oceans, and the land if we are to predict changes to our climate and the availability of water resources," said
Two Earth science missions will be sent to the
The space station has served as a unique platform advancing scientific research and technological discovery for more than 13 years. Its mid-inclination orbit allows for observations at all local times over nearly 85 percent of Earth's surface.
ISS-RapidScat, scheduled to launch to the station
The new Cloud-Aerosol Transport System (CATS) is a technology demonstration mission using three-wavelength lasers to extend satellite observations of small particles in the atmosphere from volcanoes, air pollution, dust, and smoke. These aerosol particles pose human health risks at ground level and influence global climate through their impact on cloud cover and solar radiation in Earth's atmosphere. CATS is scheduled to launch
"With these two instruments launching to the space station, ISS will come into its own as an important platform for studying the Earth system and global change," said
Putting satellite data to work meeting local and regional needs around the world is another part of
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For the first time in more than a decade, five NASA Earth science missions will be launched into space in the same year, opening new and improved remote eyes to monitor a changing planet.
According to a release, the five launches, including two to the