nasagoddard The only way to know how thing are changing is to monitor them at regular intervals. When it comes to #climate change, regular measurements are essential. As the Earth’s polar caps respond to changing global climate conditions, experts rely on satellite measurements to make accurate, regular measurements. But satellites don’t last forever, and while the world waits for a new vehicle to get into space, NASA has a team in the field to gather vital data and fill in the gaps. It’s called Operation IceBridge, and it’s going on right now in the low altitude skies over #Antarctica.
Credit: NASA/Goddard/IceBridge #nasagoddard
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  •   rakan_aldousari @mflane the f did I just read ? 16h
  •   pbcity awesome ;) 16h
  •   dominick_evans Al Gore your a condescending douche. Trying to scare people so you save them from this doom, and gloom. 16h
  •   d_nicacia @valeriagrams Dip18 awareness 15h
  •   democles01 Antarctica has been experiencing record cold temps, and record coverage of ice as well. If it gets warmer...it's man's fault...if it gets colder...it's man's fault. I love it, it's our fault if the climate changes at all. 14h
  •   silk_strands I pray they can save them 12h
  •   jonathanparrishwest Snore. If you think global warming isn't real ask the US Navy. They're not known for being liberal. They are known for getting the job done. They take global warming and melting ice very seriously. 11h
  •   loridarlin4321 US Navy is no joke what's going on is the real deal believe that, scared? you should be its the beginning of the end. Reality 3h

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nasagoddard The brightly glowing plumes seen in this image are reminiscent of an underwater scene, with turquoise-tinted currents and nebulous strands reaching out into the surroundings.

However, this is no ocean. This image actually shows part of the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), a small nearby galaxy that orbits our galaxy, the Milky Way, and appears as a blurred blob in our skies. The NASA/European Space Agency (ESA) Hubble Space Telescope has peeked many times into this galaxy, releasing stunning images of the whirling clouds of gas and sparkling stars (opo9944a, heic1301, potw1408a). This image shows part of the Tarantula Nebula's outskirts. This famously beautiful nebula, located within the LMC, is a frequent target for Hubble.

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA: acknowledgement: Josh Barrington #nasagoddard #hubble #hst #space #galaxy
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nasagoddard How, When and Where to Safely Watch the Oct. 23 Partial Solar Eclipse
During the late afternoon of Oct. 23, 2014, a partial solar eclipse will be visible from much of North America before sundown. Partial eclipses occur when the moon blocks part of the sun from view.

It is never safe to look at the sun with the naked eye. Even during a partial eclipse, when only a very small part of the sun is visible, viewing it without eye protection risks permanent eye damage or blindness. Listed below are a few ways of safely watching the eclipse. No matter which recommended technique you choose, do not stare continuously at the sun. Take breaks and give your eyes a rest. And, remember, don't use regular sunglasses -- they don't offer your eyes sufficient protection.

The safest and most inexpensive way to watch a partial solar eclipse is by projection. Place a pinhole or small opening in a card, and hold it between the sun and a screen – giant sheet of white paper works – a few feet away. An image of the sun will be seen on the screen. Projected images of the sun's crescent during an eclipse may even be seen on the ground in the small openings created by interlacing fingers, or in the dappled sunlight beneath a leafy tree. You can also use binoculars to project a magnified image of the sun on a white card. However, you must never look through the binoculars at the sun.

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

Credit: T. Ruen #nasagoddard #solareclipse #sun #sky
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nasagoddard Comet Siding Spring Mars Flyby

On October 19, Comet Siding Spring will pass within 88,000 miles of Mars – just one third of the distance from the Earth to the Moon! Traveling at 33 miles per second and weighing as much as a small mountain, the comet hails from the outer fringes of our solar system, originating in a region of icy debris known as the Oort cloud. Comets from the Oort cloud are both ancient and rare. Since this is Comet Siding Spring’s first trip through the inner solar system, scientists are excited to learn more about its composition and the effects of its gas and dust on the Mars upper atmosphere. NASA will be watching closely before, during, and after the flyby with its entire fleet of Mars orbiters and rovers, along with the Hubble Space Telescope and dozens of instruments on Earth. The encounter is certain to teach us more about Oort cloud comets, the Martian atmosphere, and the solar system’s earliest ingredients.

Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center #nasagoddard #MarsComet #mars
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nasagoddard Hubble's View of Comet Siding Spring

Comet Siding Spring is plunging toward the Sun along a roughly 1-million-year orbit. The comet, discovered in 2013, was within the radius of Jupiter's orbit when the Hubble Space Telescope photographed it on March 11, 2014. Hubble resolves two jets of dust coming from the solid icy nucleus. These persistent jets were first seen in Hubble pictures taken on Oct. 29, 2013. The feature should allow astronomers to measure the direction of the nucleus's pole, and hence, rotation axis. The comet will make its closest approach to our Sun on Oct. 25, 2014, at a distance of 130 million miles, well outside Earth's orbit. On its inbound leg, Comet Siding Spring will pass within 84,000 miles of Mars on Oct. 19, 2014, which is less than half the Moon's distance from Earth. The comet is not expected to become bright enough to be seen by the naked eye.

Credit: NASA, ESA, and J.-Y. Li (Planetary Science Institute) #nasagoddard #MarsComet
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nasagoddard Hurricane Watch in Effect for Bermuda

Hurricane Gonzalo is moving toward the northwest near 12 mph. A turn toward the north-northwest and then north is expected during the next day or so, followed by a north northeastward acceleration by late Thursday. Maximum sustained winds are near 130 mph making Gonzalo a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Tropical storm conditions are possible on Bermuda by late Thursday night, with hurricane conditions possible on Friday. Large swells generated by Gonzalo will reach much of the U.S. east coast and Bermuda on Thursday. These swells are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions. This image was taken by GOES 13 at 1607 UTC on October 16, 2014.

Caption: NOAA Image Credit: NOAA/NASA GOES Project #nasagoddard #Hurricane #Gonzalo #Bermuda #weather
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nasagoddard The Turbulent Bering Sea

Large blooms of phytoplankton (likely coccolithophores) surrounded the 51-kilometer-long St. Matthew Island in the Bering Sea on October 8, 2014 when the above Aqua-MODIS image was collected. The swirls and eddies of color give some indication of the turbulent nature of these waters. The reflective blooms have been visible from orbit for a few months now.

Credit: NASA/Goddard/Aqua/MODIS #nasagoddard
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nasagoddard There’s more than one way to study the impact of biofuels. For NASA scientists, it means trailing an aircraft from as little as 300 feet behind while flying 34,000 feet in the air.

Earlier this year, a NASA-led team conducted a series of carefully choreographed flights over California in order to sniff out how aircraft emissions differ when using petroleum fuels or biofuels. Early results from the Alternative Fuel Effects on Contrails and Cruise Emissions (ACCESS II) experiment confirm that blended biofuel is the cleaner-burning fuel.
"Our findings show we definitely see a 50 percent reduction in soot emissions from the DC-8 when it burns the blended fuel as opposed to jet fuel alone," said Bruce Anderson, ACCESS principal investigator from NASA's Langley Research Center.

The DC-8 is a NASA science workhorse: a flying laboratory equipped to collect—or, in this case, produce—data for basic Earth science research. During the ACESS experiment, scientists took advantage of the aircraft's segregated fuel tank. On the fly, the pilot switched the fuel type sent to each of the four engines. The engines burned either jet fuel, or a 50-50 blend of jet fuel and a renewable alternative produced from camelina plant oil. With each change of fuel, three other instrumented aircraft took turns lining up in the DC-8's wake and flying anywhere from 90 meters (300 feet) to more than 30 kilometers (20 miles) behind to catch a sniff.

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

Credit: NASA Earth Observatory #nasagoddard
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nasagoddard Boo!

Active regions on the sun combined to look something like a jack-o-lantern’s face on Oct. 8, 2014. The active regions appear brighter because those are areas that emit more light and energy — markers of an intense and complex set of magnetic fields hovering in the sun’s atmosphere, the corona. This image blends together two sets of wavelengths at 171 and 193 Angstroms, typically colorized in gold and yellow, to create a particularly Halloween-like appearance.

Credit: NASA/Goddard/SDO #nasagoddard #boo #halloween #sun
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nasagoddard 2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the launch of NASA’s first Nimbus spacecraft. Seven Nimbus satellites were launched in the ‘60s and ‘70s to conduct air, land and ocean research. These satellites played a key role in testing new instruments and technology used on today’s search and rescue, weather and earth research satellites.

You can read more about it here: http://bit.ly/1nZE5bu

Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center #nasagoddard
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nasagoddard Topography of Earth's moon generated from data collected by the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter, aboard NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, with the gravity anomalies bordering the Procellarum region superimposed in blue. The border structures are shown using gravity gradients calculated with data from NASA's Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission. These gravity anomalies are interpreted as ancient lava-flooded rift zones buried beneath the volcanic plains (or maria) on the nearside of the Moon.

Credit: NASA/Colorado School of Mines/MIT/GSFC/Scientific Visualization Studio

#nasagoddard #moon #map #LRO
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nasagoddard At first glance a dry lake bed in the southern California desert seems like the last place to prepare to study ice. But on Oct. 2, 2014, NASA’s Operation IceBridge carried out a ground-based GPS survey of the El Mirage lake bed in California’s Mojave Desert. Members of the IceBridge team are currently at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center, preparing instruments aboard the DC-8 research aircraft for flights over Antarctica.

Part of this preparation involves test flights over the desert, where researchers verify their instruments are working properly. El Mirage serves as a prime location for testing the mission’s laser altimeter, the Airborne Topographic Mapper, because the lake bed has a flat surface and reflects light similarly to snow and ice.

This photo, taken shortly after the survey, shows the GPS-equipped survey vehicle and a stationary GPS station (left of the vehicle) on the lake bed with the constellation Ursa Major in the background. By driving the vehicle in parallel back and forth lines over a predefined area and comparing those GPS elevation readings with measurements from the stationary GPS, researchers are able to build an elevation map that will be used to precisely calibrate the laser altimeter for ice measurements.

Credit: NASA/John Sonntag #nasagoddard
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nasagoddard Inside NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center's giant clean room in Greenbelt, Md., JWST Optical Engineer Larkin Carey examines two test mirror segments recently placed on a black composite structure. This black composite structure is called the James Webb Space Telescope's “Pathfinder” and acts as a spine supporting the telescope's primary mirror segments. The Pathfinder is a non-flight prototype. "Getting this right is critical to proving we are ready to start assembling the flight mirrors onto the flight structure next summer," said Lee Feinberg, NASA's Optical Telescope Element Manager at NASA Goddard. "This is the first space telescope that has ever been built with a light-weighted segmented primary mirror, so learning how to do this is a groundbreaking capability for not only the Webb telescope but for potential future space telescopes." Credit: NASA/Chris Gunn #nasagoddard #jwst #Webb 3w

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nasagoddard After 17 years, NASA’s Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite has indicated it is at the end of its fuel supply. TRMM has advanced our understanding of rainfall, tropical cyclones and the occurrence of floods and droughts. As it slowly descends towards Earth in the next two to three years, it will continue to collect useful data.
Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center #nasagoddard #earth #weather
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nasagoddard The Sun just spewed a twisting blob of plasma
A twisted blob of solar material – a hot, charged gas called plasma – can be seen erupting off the side of the sun on Sept. 26, 2014. The image is from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, focusing in on ionized Helium at 60,000 degrees C.
Credit: NASA/Goddard/SDO #nasagoddard #sun #plasma #space
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nasagoddard This new image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope shows NGC 7793, a spiral galaxy in the constellation of Sculptor some 13 million light-years away from Earth. NGC 7793 is one of the brightest galaxies in the Sculptor Group, one of the closest groups of galaxies to the Local Group — the group of galaxies containing our galaxy, the Milky Way and the Magellanic Clouds.

The image shows NGC 7793’s spiral arms and small central bulge. Unlike some other spirals, NGC 7793 doesn’t have a very pronounced spiral structure, and its shape is further muddled by the mottled pattern of dark dust that stretches across the frame. The occasional burst of bright pink can be seen in the galaxy, highlighting stellar nurseries containing newly-forming baby stars.

Although it may look serene and beautiful from our perspective, this galaxy is actually a very dramatic and violent place. Astronomers have discovered a powerful micro-quasar within NGC 7793 — a system containing a black hole actively feeding on material from a companion star. A micro-quasar is an object that has some of the properties of quasars in miniature. While many full-sized quasars are known at the cores of other galaxies, it is unusual to find a quasar in a galaxy’s disk rather than at its center.

Image credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, Acknowledgement: D. Calzetti (University of Massachusetts) and the LEGUS Team #hubble #nasa #nasaoddard #space
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nasagoddard NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft has obtained its first observations of the extended upper atmosphere surrounding Mars.

The Imaging Ultraviolet Spectrograph (IUVS) instrument obtained these false-color images eight hours after the successful completion of Mars orbit insertion by the spacecraft at 10:24 p.m. EDT Sunday, Sept. 21, after a 10-month journey.
The image shows the planet from an altitude of 36,500 km in three ultraviolet wavelength bands. Blue shows the ultraviolet light from the sun scattered from atomic hydrogen gas in an extended cloud that goes to thousands of kilometers above the planet’s surface. Green shows a different wavelength of ultraviolet light that is primarily sunlight reflected off of atomic oxygen, showing the smaller oxygen cloud. Red shows ultraviolet sunlight reflected from the planet’s surface; the bright spot in the lower right is light reflected either from polar ice or clouds.

The oxygen gas is held close to the planet by Mars’ gravity, while lighter hydrogen gas is present to higher altitudes and extends past the edges of the image. These gases derive from the breakdown of water and carbon dioxide in Mars’ atmosphere. Over the course of its one-Earth-year primary science mission, MAVEN observations like these will be used to determine the loss rate of hydrogen and oxygen from the Martian atmosphere. These observations will allow us to determine the amount of water that has escaped from the planet over time.
MAVEN is the first spacecraft dedicated to exploring the tenuous upper atmosphere of Mars.

Credit: Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, University of Colorado; NASA
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nasagoddard 2014 Arctic Sea Ice Minimum Sixth Lowest on Record -- Sea ice acts as an air conditioner for the planet, reflecting energy from the Sun. On Sept. 17, the Arctic sea ice it reached its minimum extent for 2014. At 1.94 million square miles (5.02 million square kilometers), it’s the sixth lowest extent of the satellite record. With warmer temperatures and thinner, less resilient ice, the Arctic sea ice is on a downward trend.

Read more: http://1.usa.gov/1mpF3ga

Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center #nasagoddard #climate #actonclimate
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nasagoddard Dust and Clouds Dance Over the Sahara -- More dust blows out of the Sahara Desert and into the atmosphere than from any other desert in the world, and more than half of the dust deposited in the ocean lifts off from these arid North African lands. Saharan dust influences the fertility of Atlantic waters and soils in the Americas. It blocks or reflects sunlight and affects the formation of clouds. By way of the dry Saharan air layer, dust either promotes or suppresses the development of Atlantic hurricanes, an enigma that scientists are trying to sort out.

In early September 2014, it looked like this sandy landscape had changed places with the sky. The photograph above was taken by astronaut Alex Gerst on September 8, 2014, from the International Space Station. The ISS was over Libya at the time, and Gerst was looking south-southwest over a storm that stretched hundreds of kilometers across the sand seas of the Sahara.

Credit: NASA #nasagoddard
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Amaro NASA Goddard
nasagoddard #Mars science superstars 1mon

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