Clarksville, TN – Give Austin Peay State University student Dominic Critchlow a balloon and a camera and he can quite literally show you the world.
A senior in APSU’s Department of Physics and Astronomy and a 2015-16 Presidential Research Scholar, Critchlow has spent quite a bit of time researching a simple solution for the complex problem of computer assisted image remote sensing through high altitude balloons.
Written by Kasha Patel and Joy Ng
Greenbelt, MD – Not all raindrops are created equal. The size of falling raindrops depends on several factors, including where the cloud producing the drops is located on the globe and where the drops originate in the cloud.
For the first time, scientists have three-dimensional snapshots of raindrops and snowflakes around the world from space, thanks to the joint NASA and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission.
Written by Carol Rasmussen
Pasadena, CA – A NASA-led team of scientists has developed the first-ever method for detecting the presence of different types of underground forest fungi from space, information that may help researchers predict how climate change will alter forest habitats.
Hidden beneath every forest is a network of fungi living in mutually beneficial relationships with the trees. Called mycorrhizal fungi, these organisms spread underground for miles, scavenging for nutrients that they trade with trees for sugars the trees make during photosynthesis. “Nearly all tree species associate with only one of two types of mycorrhizal fungi,” explained coauthor Richard Phillips of Indiana University, Bloomington.
Written by Alan Buis
Pasadena, CA – A new study by NASA and several partners has found that in California’s Sierra Nevada, atmospheric river storms are two-and-a-half times more likely than other types of winter storms to result in destructive “rain-on-snow” events, where rain falls on existing snowpack, causing it to melt. Those events increase flood risks in winter and reduce water availability the following summer.
The study, based on NASA satellite and ground-based data from 1998 through 2014, is the first to establish a climatological connection between atmospheric river storms and rain-on-snow events. Partnering with NASA on the study were UCLA; Scripps Institution of Oceanography, San Diego; and the Earth System Research Laboratory, Boulder, Colorado.
Written by Alan Buis
Pasadena, CA – New measurements from a NASA satellite have allowed researchers to identify and quantify, for the first time, how climate-driven increases of liquid water storage on land have affected the rate of sea level rise.
A new study by scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, and the University of California, Irvine, shows that while ice sheets and glaciers continue to melt, changes in weather and climate over the past decade have caused Earth’s continents to soak up and store an extra 3.2 trillion tons of water in soils, lakes and underground aquifers, temporarily slowing the rate of sea level rise by about 20 percent.
Written by Alan Buis
Pasadena, CA – New, detailed maps of the world’s natural landscapes created using NASA satellite data could help scientists better predict the impacts of future climate change.
The maps of forests, grasslands and other productive ecosystems provide the most complete picture yet of how carbon from the atmosphere is reused and recycled by Earth’s natural ecosystems.
Scientists at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom; NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California; and Wageningen University, Netherlands, used a computer model to analyze a decade of satellite and field study data from 2001 to 2010.
NASA’s Global Precipitation Measurement Satellite studies Thunderstorms in Southeastern United States
Written by Hal Pierce / Rob Gutro
Greenbelt, MD – Severe weather moved through the southern U.S. on February 2nd and 3rd, and NASA’s Global Precipitation Measurement or GPM core satellite examined the violent thunderstorms.
On February 3rd, 2016 at 1851 UTC (1:51pm ET/12:51pm CT) the GPM core observatory satellite flew over a line of storms extending from the Gulf coast of Florida through New York state. Tornadoes were spotted in Georgia and South Carolina within this area of violent weather.
Written by Elizabeth Landau
Pasadena, CA – Nepal’s magnitude 7.8 Gorkha earthquake caused significant damage and loss of life in 2015. In natural disasters like this, it is critical to locate areas that are in the most need of assistance as fast as possible.
Quickly assessing and communicating where the hardest-hit areas are and prioritizing which regions or communities have the greatest need for first-response teams is difficult when a disaster unevenly devastates various parts of a large area. It helps to get a bigger-picture view of where the damage is located from a high vantage point: low-Earth orbit.
Written by Alan Buis
Pasadena, CA – Seas around the world have risen an average of nearly 3 inches (8 centimeters) since 1992, with some locations rising more than 9 inches (25 centimeters) due to natural variation, according to the latest satellite measurements from NASA and its partners.
An intensive research effort now underway, aided by NASA observations and analysis, points to an unavoidable rise of several feet in the future.
The question scientists are grappling with is how quickly will seas rise?
Written by Kasha Patel
Greenbelt, MD – On August 28th, 2005, the National Hurricane Center issued a public notice warning people in New Orleans of “devastating damage expected…power outages will last for weeks…persons…pets…and livestock left exposed to the winds will be killed,” from the ensuing Hurricane Katrina.
The storm had formed near the Bahamas and south Florida before becoming a Category 2 hurricane over the Gulf region northwest of Key West. Then, in two days, the hurricane’s winds almost doubled to 175 mph, creating Category 5 Hurricane Katrina— the most intense hurricane in the past 36 years.
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