Tag Archives: modis

NASA Finds Drought May Take Toll on Congo Rainforest

A new analysis of NASA satellite data shows Africa’s Congo rainforest, the second-largest tropical rainforest in the world, has undergone a large-scale decline in greenness over the past decade.

The study, led by Liming Zhou of University at Albany, State University of New York, shows between 2000 and 2012, the decline affected an increasing amount of forest area and intensified. The research, published Wednesday in Nature, is one of the most comprehensive observational studies to explore the effects of long-term drought on the Congo rainforest using several independent satellite sensors. (more…)

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Giant ice island shatters

Ice island reported by UD researcher breaks into mammoth ‘ice cubes’

The giant ice island that broke off Greenland’s Petermann Glacier in July 2012 has plowed into the ocean floor and shattered into a couple of mammoth “ice cubes” sitting in the ocean, according to the University of Delaware researcher who reported the initial glacial event last year.

Andreas Muenchow, an associate professor in UD’s College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment, said the ice chunk twice the size of Manhattan that snapped off the glacier in July 2012 ground into the ocean floor and has split into at least two ice islands and a number of large icebergs. (more…)

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Hidden Wildfires Taking Big Toll on Amazon Rainforest

Using an innovative satellite technique, NASA scientists have determined that a previously unmapped type of wildfire in the Amazon rainforest is responsible for destroying several times more forest than has been lost through deforestation in recent years.

In the southern Amazon rainforest, fires below the forest treetops, or “understory fires,” have been hidden from view from NASA satellites that detect actively burning fires. The new method has now led to the first regional estimate of understory fire damages across the southern Amazon. (more…)

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Satellites See Double Jeopardy for SoCal Fire Season

PASADENA, Calif. – New insights into two factors that are creating a potentially volatile Southern California wildfire season come from an ongoing project using NASA and Indian satellite data by scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.; and Chapman University, Orange, Calif.

The scientists tracked the relationship between rainfall and the growth and drying-out of vegetation in recent months, during an abnormally dry year. They found the timing of rains triggered regional vegetation growth in January and early February, which then dried out faster than normal during a period of low rainfall, strong winds and high temperatures in March and April. The combination likely elevates wildfire risks by increasing available fuel. (more…)

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NASA Map Sees Earth’s Trees in a New Light

PASADENA, Calif. – A NASA-led science team has created an accurate, high-resolution map of the height of Earth’s forests. The map will help scientists better understand the role forests play in climate change and how their heights influence wildlife habitats within them, while also helping them quantify the carbon stored in Earth’s vegetation.

Scientists from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.; the University of Maryland, College Park; and Woods Hole Research Center, Falmouth, Mass., created the map using 2.5 million carefully screened, globally distributed laser pulse measurements from space. The light detection and ranging (lidar) data were collected in 2005 by the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System instrument on NASA’s Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat). (more…)

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New NASA Map Reveals Tropical Forest Carbon Storage

PASADENA, Calif. – A NASA-led research team has used a variety of NASA satellite data to create the most precise map ever produced depicting the amount and location of carbon stored in Earth’s tropical forests. The data are expected to provide a baseline for ongoing carbon monitoring and research and serve as a useful resource for managing the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide.

The new map, created from ground- and space-based data, shows, for the first time, the distribution of carbon stored in forests across more than 75 tropical countries. Most of that carbon is stored in the extensive forests of Latin America. (more…)

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First-of-Its-Kind Map Details the Height of the Globe’s Forests

WASHINGTON — Using satellite data, scientists have produced a first-of-its kind map that details the height of the world’s forests. Although there are other local- and regional-scale forest canopy maps, the new map is the first that spans the entire globe based on one uniform method.

(more…)

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NASA infrared imagery shows well-defined eye in Category 5 Celia

Celia has exploded into a monster hurricane in the Eastern Pacific, and is now a Category 5 storm over open waters.

NASA’s Aqua satellite captured an infrared image (that shows temperature) of Celia’s clouds and clearly shows an eye in the storm.

(more…)

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