NASA ECOSTRESS data incorporated into new wildfire response tool
NASA’s ECOsystem Spaceborne Thermal Radiometer Experiment on Space Station (ECOSTRESS) is aiding in the fight against fires in the Western US, according to the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
The instrument, which is on the International Space Station, is uniquely positioned to provide wildfire responders with a high-resolution look at fire progression.
As of July 28, 2021, the size of the Bootleg Fire in southern Oregon, US, was more than 410,000 acres, making it the largest wildfire currently burning in the US. Wildfire responders have managed to contain about 53% of the fire, and new data from ECOSTRESS is helping.
Biral and MicroStep-MIS install new automated weather systems at 16 Nepalese airports
Over the past two years, meteorological experts Biral and MicroStep-MIS have been updating and upgrading all of the national airports across Nepal to meet the latest international standards and take advantage of the latest innovations related to automatic weather stations (AWS) and automated weather observation systems (AWOS).
The new AWOS systems are installed at 16 national and international airports across Nepal, including a full Runway Visual Range System (RVR) at the country’s capital airport of Kathmandu. Situated at 1,338m above sea level and surrounded by mountains, the site is one of the most dramatic settings for an airport in the world and is also the gateway to the Himalayas.
NOAA launches innovation challenge to find tools to tackle the climate crisis
NOAA, in partnership with the US Census Bureau, has launched a new product development sprint project with the aim of creating data-driven tools that will help decision makers tackle the climate crisis.
As part of the project teams of participants are challenged to build world-class applications and technologies that make it easy for local governments, particularly in underserved regions most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, to quickly identify and integrate relevant federal climate datasets with their own local information.
Such tools will support the development of climate resilience plans to help communities nationwide take action to better prepare for and respond to the increasing impacts of the climate crisis.
Two Saildrones launched as part of five-month hurricane research mission
Two Saildrone uncrewed surface vehicles (USV) launched from San Francisco Bay, US, on July 23, 2021, initiating a five-month research mission in the Eastern Tropical Pacific Ocean hurricane genesis region. The USV’s were launched as part of the Tropical Pacific Observing System (TPOS) Mission 4.
The saildrones will enter the region during its convective season, which extends from early June through to mid-October. While in the genesis region, the two drones will make repeat sections to observe environmental preconditions and storm activity that can lead to hurricane development.
Hurricanes that develop in this region affect moisture transport and subsequent rainfall along the west coast of North America.
UAE National Center of Meteorology opens new Science Dome
The National Center of Meteorology (NCM) in the UAE has inaugurated its Science Dome, a new 4D experience offered to the public as part of an engagement strategy that helps audiences understand meteorology, geophysics and rain enhancement science.
The Science Dome features state-of-the-art technologies, special effects, a 6K projection system and custom media. The dome is dedicated to meteorological data and has been designed to host international weather experts and to aid informal education as a 4D immersive experience.
The dome brings together the very best elements of an entertainment experience, with accurate scientific visualizations that are driven by real science for groups of up to 60 people, as well as a dedicated space for visitors with accessibility needs.
NASA is using AI to calibrate Atmospheric Imagery Assembly for better space weather prediction
A group of researchers is using artificial intelligence (AI) techniques to calibrate some of NASA’s images of the Sun, helping improve the data that scientists use for solar research.
Launched in 2010, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) has provided high-definition images of the Sun for over a decade. Its images have given scientists a detailed look at various solar phenomena that can spark space weather and affect astronauts and technology on Earth and in space.
The Atmospheric Imagery Assembly (AIA) is one of two imaging instruments on SDO and looks constantly at the Sun, taking images across 10 wavelengths of ultraviolet light every 12 seconds.
Bushfires, not pandemic lockdowns, had biggest impact on global climate in 2020
When a team of scientists began analyzing events that influenced the world’s climate in 2020, they made sure to consider the pandemic-related lockdowns that reduced emissions and led to clearer skies over many cities.
But they found that an entirely different event had a more immediate impact on global climate: the devastating bushfires that burned through Australia from late 2019 to 2020, pumping plumes of smoke that reached the stratosphere and circled much of the southern hemisphere.
“The main climate forcing of 2020 wasn’t Covid-19 at all,” said John Fasullo, a scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the lead author of a new study entitled Coupled Climate Responses to Recent Australian Wildfire and Covid-19 Emissions Anomalies Estimated in CESM2.
UK and Australian new polar research ships rendezvous on sea trials
The UK and Australia’s two new polar research ships got together off the coast of Falmouth last week during sea trials in preparation for their first Antarctic missions.
The state-of-the-art RRS Sir David Attenborough and RSV Nuyina will enable scientists to understand changes in our planet’s climate, oceans and marine life.
RRS Sir David Attenborough, commissioned by NERC and built by Cammell Laird for operation by British Antarctic Survey (BAS) is carrying out Sea Acceptance Tests on some of its nine scientific winches. With a combined 61,000m of cable for deploying and retrieving scientific equipment, the winches are essential for launching marine robotics and oceanographic equipment.