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

Annemarie Peacock

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Automated Wetland Hydroperiod Mapping by Integrating Optical Satellite Imagery and Synthetic Aperture Radar

Alaska’s wetlands cover approximately one third of the state and provide a multitude of ecosystem services, including nutrient retention, water purification, and provision of habitat for fish, wildlife, and vegetation. The temporal variation in wetland inundation affects these ecosystem functions, and for effective wetland policy...

Principal Investigator

Enrique Vivoni

Project Description: An ongoing drought in the Colorado River Basin has reduced levels in Lake Mead to the extent of triggering a reduction in Arizona’s Colorado River supply allocation under the Drought Contingency Plan agreement. Arizona State University and the Central Arizona Project have partnered...

Principal Investigator

Philip Townsend

In wildlife management, perception is everything. Natural resource agencies are tasked with managing wildlife for a diverse group of constituents with interests ranging from hunting to conservation. As such, wildlife management is often burdened by disconnects between the public s perception of wildlife abundance and...
Principal Investigator

Erika Munshi

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At the base, Landsat 8 OLI displays an 8-day NDWI composite using 2020 imagery in false color; light hues represent higher presence of water. Howard County slope displayed in black and white; white values indicate steep areas and emphasize water transport efficiency in Ellicott City, MD (center) joining the Patapsco River. NASA Daymet precipitation from May 2018 flash flood event displayed in rainbow; purple hues represent severe rainfall on right of image as storm recedes.   Keywords: precipitation, hydrology, forecast, early warning system, disaster preparedness​

As flood events in the United States grow in frequency and intensity, the uses of applied remote sensing analyses are increasingly necessary for effective flood monitoring and warning systems. The NASA DEVELOP Ellicott City Disasters III project investigated the use...

Principal Investigator

Hyongki Lee

Low-lying deltas in Indochina are vulnerable to water resources availability due to dense population and extensive irrigation. Inhabitants of the deltas depend heavily on groundwater to supplement surface water stocks for irrigation and domestic use, especially during the dry season. Over-exploitation of groundwater has led...
Principal Investigator

John Reager

Project description: The aim of this project is to develop a groundwater numerical model using groundwater depletion from GRACE, land subsidence from InSAR, and in situ hydrologic data from U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and California Department Water Resources (CA-DWR). The model, calibrated to GRACE groundwater...

Principal Investigator

Natasha Sadoff and Amy Leibrand

This project aimed to strengthen connections between the Earth science community and electric utility data end users, as well as build capacity for domestic electric utility stakeholders to access and apply Earth observation (EO) information in resilience and renewable energy program planning.  Over the course...

Principal Investigator

M. Colin Marvin

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Nearshore turbidity created with 2020 Landsat 8 OLI red band (B3). Assateague Island, our study site, is located off the coast of Virginia and Maryland. Red shades suggest high turbidity, light green and yellow shades suggest moderate turbidity and blue and purple shades show low turbidity. Knowing the extent of turbidity allows the team to examine how natural longshore currents are moving sediment deposited by the US Army Corps of Engineers. This is important for both the geological integrity of the island and threatened species depend on sediment replenishment.  Keywords: Turbidity, ORCAA, ocean color, bathymetry, sediment transport

Assateague Island is located off the coast of Maryland and Virginia and serves as a home to sensitive species and habitats. However, infrastructure development disrupted the natural sediment transport processes of the barrier island, which accelerated erosion of the island’s...

Principal Investigator

Brandon Crawford

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Characterizing Vegetation Type at Pre- and Post-wildfire Periods Using NASA Earth Observations

Wildfire is a key driver of ecosystem progression in the sagebrush steppe-dominated landscapes of southern Idaho. Fire-related disturbances can facilitate the propagation of invasive vegetation, threatening native wildlife and shaping a fire regime that is increasingly hazardous to adjacent urban development. Applying the methodology created...

Principal Investigator

Roger Ly

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This image is a composite of radiometrically terrain corrected UAVSAR L-band imagery over the Agua Salud Project area in the Panama Canal Watershed, collected on February 2nd, 2010 and March 13th, 2015 from the NASA Gulfstream III Jet. The image is composed of several images, with different temporal combinations of the HV backscatter. Darker colors show an increase in volume scattering over time, indicating increased biomass. These images were used to discern land cover change.  Keywords: UAVSAR, RTC, Agua Salud Project, STRI

The Panama Canal Watershed (PCW) is a major socioeconomic resource. The PCW provides potable water to surrounding cities and ensures the Panama Canal remains fully operational throughout each year. Over one million residents in Panama City, Colón, and San Miguelito...