nasagoddard The next three decades will see an end of the era of big ozone holes. In a new study, scientists from NASA Goddard Space Flight Center say that the ozone hole will be consistently smaller than 12 million square miles by the year 2040.

Ozone-depleting chemicals in the atmosphere cause an ozone hole to form over Antarctica during the winter months in the Southern Hemisphere. Since the Montreal Protocol agreement in 1987, emissions have been regulated and chemical levels have been declining. However, the ozone hole has still remained bigger than 12 million square miles since the early 1990s, with exact sizes varying from year to year.

The size of the ozone hole varies due to both temperature and levels of ozone-depleting chemicals in the atmosphere. In order to get a more accurate picture of the future size of the ozone hole, scientists used NASA’s AURA satellite to determine how much the levels of these chemicals in the atmosphere varied each year. With this new knowledge, scientists can confidently say that the ozone hole will be consistently smaller than 12 million square miles by the year 2040. Scientists will continue to use satellites to monitor the recovery of the ozone hole and they hope to see its full recovery by the end of the century.

Credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center #nasagoddard #earth
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nasagoddard The smudge of stars at the center of this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image is a galaxy known as UGC 5797. UGC 5797 is an emission line galaxy, meaning that it is currently undergoing active star formation. The result is a stellar population that is constantly being refurbished as massive bright blue stars form. Galaxies with prolific star formation are not only veiled in a blue tint, but are key to the continuation of a stellar cycle.

In this image UGC 5797 appears in front of a background of spiral galaxies. Spiral galaxies have copious amounts of dust and gas — the main ingredient for stars — and therefore often also belong to the class of emission line galaxies.

Spiral galaxies have disk-like shapes that drastically vary in appearance depending on the angle at which they are observed. The collection of spiral galaxies in this frame exhibits this attribute acutely: Some are viewed face-on, revealing the structure of the spiral arms, while the two in the bottom left are seen edge-on, appearing as plain streaks in the sky. There are many spiral galaxies, with varying colors and at different angles, sprinkled across this image — just take a look.

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA # #🔭 #nasagoddard #Hubble
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nasagoddard On April 29 at 06:35 UTC (2:35 a.m. EDT), the MODIS instrument aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured this visible image of Tropical Cyclone Quang in the Southern Indian Ocean.

On April 29, when Aqua passed over Quang, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument data provided a visible picture of Quang that showed a concentration of strong thunderstorms around the center of circulation and a band of thunderstorms winding into the center from the south.

The Australian Bureau of Meteorology forecast calls for Quang to move southeast over the next couple of days. Quang's center is forecast to approach Coral Bay around 8 p.m. local time on Saturday, May 2. Currently, there are no warnings in effect because the storm is not yet close to land.

Credits: NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response Team #nasagoddard # #
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nasagoddard For five years, Jeremy Harbeck has worked as a support scientist for NASA’s Operation IceBridge, an airborne mission to study polar ice. The data processing that he does typically takes place in an office at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland. However, to speed the process of delivering data to the Arctic sea ice forecasting community, Harbeck traveled to Greenland for the first time in spring 2015.

He had just arrived at Greenland’s Thule Air Base on March 20 when a mechanical issue grounded the aircraft. No science flight could happen for a few days. As teams in the United States and Greenland scrambled to locate and deliver a replacement part, researchers on the ground waited. Some of them hiked to what was locally known as “the iceberg.” The unnamed berg pictured above has been frozen in place by sea ice in North Star Bay. Harbeck shot the photograph—a composite of four 49-second images—on March 21 at about 2:30 a.m. local time. The sun never fully sets at this time of year in the Arctic, so sunlight appears on the left side of the image. Lights from Thule are visible on the right side. Look for the Milky Way (top left) and a few very faint meteors visible in the early morning sky.

Credit: Photograph by Jeremy Harbeck, support scientist for NASA's Operation IceBridge mission. Caption by Kathryn Hansen. Via NASA's Earth Observatory #nasagoddard #earth #Ice #Thule #greenland
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nasagoddard The natural color image below, acquired on April 25 by the Advanced Land Imager on NASA’s Earth Observing-1 satellite, shows Calbuco’s plume rising above the cloud deck over Chile.

Credit: NASA via: NASA Earth Observatory #nasagoddard #volcano #Calbuco #Chile
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nasagoddard Submit YOUR photos to the Signs of Spring photo contest!

Today is the last day for NASA's GPM "Signs of Spring" photo contest, submit your photos before its too late!
Simply tag your photos with ‪#‎GPMSpring‬ and ‪#‎NASAGoddard‬ to enter.

Or you can submit your photos to the Flickr group: http://www.flickr.com/groups/gpm-extreme-weather/

Detail: http://pmm.nasa.gov/gpm-signs-of-spring-photo-contest

Credit: @rebroth
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nasagoddard A new window to the universe opened for humanity on the morning of April 24, 1990, when NASA's Hubble Space Telescope was lofted into space, riding atop a Promethean flame from the space shuttle Discovery. NASA and ESA are celebrating the Hubble Space Telescope's silver anniversary of 25 years in space by unveiling some of nature's own fireworks — a giant cluster of about 3,000 stars called Westerlund 2. The cluster resides inside a vibrant stellar breeding ground known as Gum 29, located 20,000 light-years away in the constellation Carina. #Hubble25 2w

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nasagoddard NASA Goddard GPM "Signs of Spring" Photo Contest!! Post and tag YOUR coolest photos of the signs of spring, and we’ll choose the best ones to post on the NASA website.

The submission period is from 3/30/15 - 4/27/15. You must use #GPMSpring and #NASAGoddard on your photos.
Please provide as much information with the submission as you are comfortable providing:

Your name, affiliation (e.g. school, community group, etc.), location where photo was taken (country, city, state, latitude, longitude), and any other interesting details about the photo and how it was taken.

Caption Great Wall at Mutianyu, seen here in April, is a section of the Great Wall of China located in Huairou County 70 km northeast of central Beijing.

Credit: @rebroth
Read all the details at: http://bit.ly/GPMSpringPhoto #GPMSpring #nasagoddard #contest #photocontest
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nasagoddard Ah, Earth, there's ‪#‎NoPlaceLikeHome‬. Kick back and enjoy these mesmerizing views of Earth from NASA.

Happy #EarthDay from @NASAGoddard!
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nasagoddard Happy ‪#‎EarthDay‬

This newly released composite image of southern Africa and the surrounding oceans was captured by six orbits of the NASA/NOAA NPP - Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership spacecraft on April 9, 2015, by the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) instrument. Tropical Cyclone Joalane can be seen over the Indian Ocean.

You can get a high-resolution version of this image on the NASA Goddard Flickr page.
Image Credit: Ocean Biology Processing Group at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center ‪‬ #nasagoddard #Earth #noplacelikehome
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nasagoddard NASA’s Operation IceBridge is deep into its Arctic 2015 campaign, flying low over Greenland’s ice sheets, outlet glaciers, and Arctic sea ice. The
airborne campaign flies over the Arctic and Antarctic every year measuring changes in the ice with instruments like radar and lasers.
This flight footage was taken from the cockpit of a NASA C-130 aircraft en route to the Helheim Glacier in eastern Greenland. Helheim has shrunk considerably
in recent years.
Music courtesy Moby, @richardmelvillehall

Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center #nasagoddard
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nasagoddard Landslides are among the most common and dramatic natural hazards, reshaping landscapes -- and anything in their path. Tracking when and where landslides occur worldwide has historically been difficult, because of the lack of a centralized database across all nations. But NASA researchers have updated the first publicly available Global Landslide Catalog, based on media reports and online databases that bring together many sources of information on landslides that have occurred since 2007. The catalog, originally released in 2010, is still the only one of its kind.
Around 6000 landslides are noted in the catalog. This wealth of data gives scientists a starting point to analyze where, how and why landslides are likely to occur. In particular, NASA researchers have begun to compare landslide occurrence with global rainfall data from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission.
Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center #nasagoddard
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nasagoddard White Dwarf May Have Shredded Passing Planet

In this Chandra image of ngc6388, researchers have found evidence that a white dwarf star may have ripped apart a planet as it came too close. When a star reaches its white dwarf stage, nearly all of the material from the star is packed inside a radius one hundredth that of the original star.

The destruction of a planet may sound like the stuff of science fiction, but a team of astronomers has found evidence that this may have happened in an ancient cluster of stars at the edge of the Milky Way galaxy.

Using several telescopes, including NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, researchers have found evidence that a white dwarf star – the dense core of a star like the Sun that has run out of nuclear fuel – may have ripped apart a planet as it came too close.

Image Credit: NASA
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nasagoddard Death of Giant Galaxies Spreads from the Core

The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and ESO's Very Large Telescope revealed 3 billion years after the Big Bang, "dead galaxies" like Elliptical galaxy IC 2006, still made stars on their outskirts, but no longer in their interiors.

Credit: NASA/ESA/Judy Schmidt and J. Blakeslee (Dominion Astrophysical Observatory). #nasaoddard #Hubble25
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nasagoddard On February 15, 2015 the Desert Sunlight solar project in California's Mojave Desert became operational. The 550-megawatt plant generates enough electricity to power 160,000 average homes. Covering an area of 16 km2, the 8.8 million cadmium telluride photovoltaic modules take advantage of the more than 300 days of sunshine. Desert Sunlight joins the similar-sized Topaz Solar Farm in San Luis Obispo County, CA, that became operational in June, 2014. The Desert Sunlight image (left) was acquired March 12, 2015 and is located at 33.8 degrees north, 115.4 degrees west; the Topaz image (right) was acquired September 11, 2014 and is located at 35.4 degrees north, 120.1 degrees west. Each image covers an area of 10.5 x 12 km.

With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER images Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet. ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched Dec. 18, 1999, on Terra. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and data products.

Image Credit: NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team
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nasagoddard In one of the most comprehensive multi-observatory galaxy surveys yet, astronomers find that galaxies like our Milky Way underwent a stellar “baby boom,” churning out stars at a prodigious rate, about 30 times faster than today.

Our sun, however, is a late “boomer.” The Milky Way’s star-birthing frenzy peaked 10 billion years ago, but our sun was late for the party, not forming until roughly 5 billion years ago. By that time the star formation rate in our galaxy had plunged to a trickle.

Read more: http://1.usa.gov/1GtO2pA

Caption: Artist's view of night sky from a hypothetical planet within a young Milky Way-like galaxy 10 billion years ago, the sky are ablaze with star birth. Pink clouds of gas harbor newborn stars, and bluish-white, young star clusters litter the landscape.

Credit: NASA/ESA/Z. Levay (STScI) #nasaoddard #hubble
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nasagoddard Eddies in the Southern Ocean -- The cloud cover over the Southern Ocean occasionally parts as it did on January 1, 2015 just west of the Drake Passage where the VIIRS instrument on the Suomi NPP satellite glimpsed the above collection of ocean-color delineated eddies which have diameters ranging from a couple of kilometers to a couple of hundred kilometers. Recent studies indicate that eddy activity has been increasing in the Southern Ocean with possible implications for climate change.

Credit: NASA's OceanColor/Suomi NPP/VIIRS #nasaoddard #eddies #weather
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nasagoddard Sea Ice off the Princess Astrid Coast -- On April 5, 2015, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite acquired this natural-color image of sea ice off the coast of East Antarctica’s Princess Astrid Coast.

White areas close to the continent are sea ice, while white areas in the northeast corner of the image are clouds. One way to better distinguish ice from clouds is with false-color imagery. In the false-color view of the scene here, ice is blue and clouds are white.

The image was acquired after Antarctic sea ice had passed its annual minimum extent (reached on February 20, 2015), and had resumed expansion toward its maximum extent (usually reached in September). Credit: NASA image by Jeff Schmaltz, LANCE/EOSDIS Rapid Response. Caption by Kathryn Hansen via NASA's Earth Observatory #weather #ice
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nasagoddard In Leo Minor, NGC 3021 is more than meets the eye #Hubble25

This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows the spiral galaxy NGC 3021 which lies about 100 million light-years away in the constellation of Leo Minor (The Little Lion). Among many other types of stars, this galaxy contains Cepheid variable stars, which can be used work out the distance to the galaxy. These stars pulsate at a rate that is closely related to their intrinsic brightness, so measurements of their rate of pulsation and their observed brightness give astronomers enough information to calculate the distance to the galaxy itself.

Cepheids are also used to calibrate an even brighter distance marker that can be used over greater distances: Type Ia supernovae. One of these bright exploding stars was observed in NGC 3021, back in 1995.

In addition, the supernova in NGC 3021 was also used to refine the measurement of what is known as the Hubble constant. The value of this constant defines how fast the Universe is expanding and the more accurately we know it the more we can understand about the evolution of the Universe in the past as well as in the future. So, there is much more to this galaxy than just a pretty spiral.

European Space Agency
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nasagoddard Hubble Finds Phantom Objects Near Dead Quasars

NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope has photographed a set of wispy, goblin-green objects that are the ephemeral ghosts of quasars that flickered to life and then faded. The ethereal wisps outside the host galaxy are believed to have been illuminated by powerful ultraviolet radiation from a supermassive black hole at the core of the host galaxy. #Hubble25

I mage Credit: NASA, ESA, and W. Keel (University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa)
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