TJ2.5 Cloud Observation as an Entry Point to Remote Sensing Education

Monday, 23 January 2017: 5:00 PM
308 (Washington State Convention Center )
Sarah A. McCrea, SSAI, Hampton, VA; and M. A. McKeown, L. H. Chambers, K. Bedka, and T. M. Rogerson

Clouds are a familiar and friendly part of our environment, yet are also key to understanding our planet’s weather and climate.  For 20 years, NASA’s Students’ Cloud Observations On-Line (S’COOL) Project has engaged participants of all ages in cloud observation tied to overpasses of Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System (CERES) satellite instruments.  Participants then receive satellite imagery for the time and place of their observation, and are invited to further exploration and analysis.  The process introduces participants to satellite imagery through exploration of imagery that contains familiar features – both on the ground and in the clouds that they observed.  In this way they are able to better appreciate the strengths (and weaknesses) of remote sensing.

The GLOBE Program also includes cloud observation protocols among the environmental measurement options that it invites students and the public worldwide to conduct in order to contribute meaningfully to our understanding of the Earth system and global environment.

After 20 years of existing in parallel, S’COOL and GLOBE are teaming up to create a larger community of cloud observers exploring satellite data and contributing to our understanding of clouds and the Earth’s energy budget. 

This presentation will provide an overview of the new, combined cloud observation protocol, highlight new e-training and related implementation resources, and present upcoming opportunities.  It will also summarize S’COOL participation patterns to date and highlight some key insights obtained from S’COOL observations.

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