Observing Earth from Space
Isabella Velicogna, University of California, Irvine
Major achievements have been made in satellite remote sensing in the last couple of decades in the field of Earth Science. This talk will present an overview of key NASA missions to planet Earth, the major science issues that they address and progress/discoveries/major advances up to date, along with the core of the near term missions to be launched. The talk will discuss in more detail specific examples more directly related to the study of ice sheet mass balance, contributions of the land water cycle to sea level rise, drought monitoring, and high Arctic hydrology, which use a combination of spaceborne and airborne techniques from NASA and other space agencies. I will discuss the GRACE ESSP (Earth System Science Pathfinder) NASA mission launched in 2002, and the GRACE follow-on mission to be launched in 2017 as a foremost example of new frontiers in science, as well as an illustration of a new very important concept in Earth Science: data continuity. I will also introduce the NASA ISRO (NISAR) SAR mission in discussion for launch in 2020 and how it will impact the fields of ice sheet dynamics, crustal deformation dynamics, volcanoes and the study of ecosystems as an introduction to the next two speakers.