Identifying drought-prone areas and developing an early warning system for crop damage. Protecting biologically diverse areas of the National Park System with a trail monitoring tool. Confirming flooded areas to better inform decision-makers during a disaster.

Each program area supports a variety of projects that utilize Earth observations to identify challenges around the world and create innovative solutions. Our portfolio demonstrates the benefits of using NASA Earth observations to enhance decision-making and improve life on Earth.

Sort by program area to find specific projects or explore them all below.

 

Principal Investigator

Pamela Kanu

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Assessing the Feasibility of Using NASA Earth Observations to Monitor Trends in Runoff and Storm Water Discharge of the Biscayne Bay

Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV) is an important component of coastal ecosystems, and is vulnerable to increased turbidity in the water column. It provides stability and protection to sediment deposits, and offers food and shelter to economically valuable species of marine life. Recent urban development and...

Principal Investigator

Lisa Dong

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Imagery showing temperature change between day and night using 2019 ECOSTRESS surface temperature data from September 1st at 3:09 am and August 30th at 11:18 am (CT). The Tennessee River, which is used to cool the Browns Ferry and Sequoyah nuclear plants, is displayed. Light shades of blue represent negative or low increase in temperature and light shades of purple represent high temperature increases. Calculating temperature change allows stakeholders to analyze temperature variation over time.  Keywords: Temperature, Tennessee Valley Energy, Nuclear Power Plants

Aquatic ecosystems are susceptible to biodiversity loss due to increased water temperatures, which can select for heat-tolerant species and lead to a loss of locally adapted species that have a narrow temperature range. Regulations concerning heated effluent from nuclear power...

Principal Investigator

Suravi Shrestha

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Assessing Threats to River Water Quality and Mangrove Health Based on Watershed Land Use on the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica

The Osa Peninsula, located in the southern region of Costa Rica's Pacific Coast, is one of the most biologically-diverse places on Earth and is a popular ecotourism destination. However, the area faces watershed degradation and loss of biodiversity due to deforestation, pollution from agriculture, and...

Principal Investigator

Jonathan O'Brien

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Assessing Urban Heat as it Relates to Social Vulnerability and Land Use Changes in Las Cruces, New Mexico

Extreme heat during the summer months is a major public health issue in many cities worldwide. Local governments are increasing efforts to mitigate heat in cities through the implementation of infrastructure adaptations, including expansion of the urban tree canopy and white roofing, as well as...

Principal Investigator

Paxton LaJoie

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Median summer daytime land surface temperature (LST) imagery displaying Cincinnati, Ohio and Northern Kenton County, Kentucky using Landsat 8 OLI data from June – August of 2019 – 2020. LST was derived from the median NDVI, brightness temperature, emissivity, and thermal band. Lighter shades of yellow indicate lower median LST, whereas darker shades of brown indicate higher median LST. Areas of higher LST should be prioritized for heat mitigation efforts.  Keywords: urban heat island, land surface temperature

The Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect is a phenomenon characterized by urban areas experiencing temperatures that are, on average, warmer than surrounding suburban and rural regions. UHIs are fueled by expansive impervious surfaces, vehicle emissions, and insufficient urban green space...

Principal Investigator

Stephanie Kealy

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This image includes a false color composite of Landsat 5 TM imagery (August 8 to 16, 2011), high-resolution classified imagery from the City of Hampton (January 2018), and percent tree canopy cover from regression analysis for the Hampton Roads peninsula in Virginia. The yellow represents high tree canopy cover (80 to 100%) and the dark purple represents low cover (0 to 10%). Percent tree canopy cover allows for the City to visualize areas for improvement.

Hampton Roads’ 1.6 million residents thrive on bustling military, harbor, and environmental industries. The region’s stakeholders identified an increasing flood and water quality risk due to urbanization, a changing climate, and sea-level rise. These hazards threaten not only the livelihood...

Principal Investigator

Jacob Ramthun

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Assessing Vegetation and Precipitation Indices to Aid Bighorn Sheep Habitat Monitoring and Management

Desert bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis; BHS) habitat selection is influenced by the relationship between precipitation patterns and habitat vegetation availability. The ability to effectively measure habitat resource quality and availability, and understand mortality rates caused by disease and predation is needed to enhance BHS habitat...

Principal Investigator

Adelaide Schmidt

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6 month Standard Precipitation Index (SPI) derived from GPM-IMERG. This shows the areas of drought for July of 2018 in the dry corridor of Central America. The dark red is extreme drought conditions, while as it gets more towards yellow it becomes mild drought.  Keywords: SPI, GPM IMERG, Precipitation

The dry corridor resides primarily in the pacific region of Central America, which experiences severe drought during the El Niño Southern Oscillation cycle. El Niño causes severe climate variances in Central America that impact agriculture, livelihoods, and hydrological cycles. The...

Principal Investigator

Danielle Quick

 
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Assessing Water Clarity to Identify Potential Areas of Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV) in the Chesapeake Bay

Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV) is vitally important to the Chesapeake Bay, serving as one of the primary food sources for the organisms that inhabit the Bay. This project evaluated the efficacy of remote sensing applications as a tool to monitor water quality parameters, specifically...

Principal Investigator

Kathrene Garcia

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Assessing Water Quality in Thailand's Chao Phraya Watershed through Modeling Sediment Concentration and Urban Footprint

The Chao Phraya River and surrounding watershed has seen an extensive increase in urban development in the last century, while simultaneously experiencing significant degradation in water quality. Covering 30% of Thailand, the Chao Phraya watershed encompasses rural areas and major metropolitan centers, including Bangkok. The...