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Latest Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity satellite Stories

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2011-08-22 19:51:31

Members of the driving force behind ESA's SMOS mission have been awarded the prestigious Certificate of Recognition by the IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society for their leadership in developing the first synthetic aperture microwave radiometer in space and for the success of the mission. The Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society awards certificates of this kind only every two to three years, and only when a significant achievement is recognized by the society's Administrative...

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2011-07-23 06:04:54

Drought in Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia and Djibouti is pushing tens of thousands of people from their homes as millions face food insecurity in a crisis visible from space. ESA's SMOS satellite shows that the region's soil is too dry to grow crops. Somalis, who already face war in their country, have been fleeing to neighboring countries in search of refuge. In Kenya's Dadaab refugee camp, for example, over 1000 people "“ mostly children "“ arrive daily, severely dehydrated and...

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2011-06-14 13:26:34

A major international effort to shut down radio signals that have, at times, been blinding the instrument on ESA's SMOS water satellite is producing a marked improvement in the quality of the mission's data. The Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) satellite was launched at the end of 2009 to improve our understanding of the water cycle. The satellite carries a passive radiometer that operates in the 1400"“1427 MHz frequency range (L-band) of the electromagnetic spectrum. It captures...

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2011-05-26 09:48:24

Written by Rosemary Sullivant, NASA/JPL The breakthrough moment for oceanographer Gary Lagerloef, the principal investigator for NASA's new Aquarius mission, came in 1991. That's when he knew it would be possible to make precise measurements of ocean salinity from space. It has taken nearly two decades to turn that possibility into a reality. Lagerloef was looking at data collected by a NASA aircraft flying over the ocean off the coast of Maryland. It was testing a new radiometer, an...

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2011-05-12 07:45:18

Western Europe's exceptionally dry spring is clear to see in maps generated using data from SMOS. While these maps offer an interesting view of the stark difference in soil moisture compared to a year ago, the data are also important for agricultural and hydrological applications. ESA's Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission has been orbiting Earth for 18 months now, making global observations of the moisture held in the top layers of soil and salt in the surface waters of the...

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2011-05-12 06:50:00

When NASA's salt-seeking Aquarius instrument ascends to the heavens this June, the moon above its launch site at California's Vandenberg Air Force Base won't be in the seventh house, and Jupiter's latest alignment with Mars will be weeks in the past, in contrast to the lyrics of the song from the popular Broadway musical "Hair." Yet for the science team eagerly awaiting Aquarius' ocean surface salinity data, the dawning of NASA's "Age of Aquarius" promises revelations on how salinity is...

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2011-02-19 05:42:13

Europe's EarthCARE space laser mission was giving a green light to move forward with the program, despite a likely 30 percent increase in the program's final costs, BBC News reports. The satellite will be put into orbit to study what type of role clouds and atmospheric particles have in a changing climate. The European Space Agency (ESA), however, is having a tough time finding a workable design for the satellite's lidar instrument, which now means the total project budget will top $800...

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2011-02-18 11:47:30

A new initiative sees world-class sport and science merge as a yacht competing in the Barcelona World Race gathers information on ocean salinity to help validate data from ESA's SMOS water mission. Competitors are about half way through the race, which takes them around the world from Barcelona in Spain and back. The yachts left Barcelona on 31 December and, on reaching the Atlantic, headed south to circle Earth via the capes of Good Hope (South Africa) Leeuwin, (Australia) and Horn...

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2010-12-18 08:45:42

Scientists from around the world have been hearing about the latest results from ESA's new GOCE, SMOS and CryoSat Earth observation missions at the biggest scientific gathering of the year. Attracting around 18 000 scientists, researchers, teachers, students and consultants to review developments in Earth and space science, the annual American Geophysical Union (AGU) Fall Meeting is an unparalleled opportunity for participants from around the world to share and discuss their...

2010-12-02 14:06:31

Although finding a successor to the Kyoto Protocol is a major item on the agenda at the 2010 UN Climate Change Conference in Cancun, Mexico, delegates are also working hard to establish an international climate monitoring system. In order to effectively respond to climate change challenges, decision-makers need scientifically based climate knowledge. It is the job of the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) to make sure that the Conference of the Parties (COP)...


Word of the Day
out-herod
  • In the phrase to out-herod Herod, to be more violent than Herod (as represented in the old mystery plays); hence, to exceed in any excess of evil.
Herod refers to 'Herod the Great,' a Roman client king and 'a madman who murdered his own family and a great many rabbis.' According to the OED, the term is 'chiefly with allusion to Shakespeare's use' in Hamlet.
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