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Recent Results From The Nasa Earth Science Terra Mission and Future PossibilitiesThe NASA Earth Sciences Enterprise has made some remarkable strides in recent times in using developing, implementing, and utilizing spaceborne observations to better understand how the Earth works as a coupled, interactive system of the land, ocean, and atmosphere. Notable examples include the Upper Atmosphere Research (UARS) Satellite, the Topology Ocean Experiment (TOPEX) mission, Landsat-7, SeaWiFS, the Tropical Rainfall Monitoring Mission (TRMM), Quickscatt, the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM), and, quite recently, the Terra'/Earth Observing System-1 mission. The Terra mission, for example, represents a major step forward in providing sensors that offer considerable advantages and progress over heritage instruments. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS), the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR), the Measurements of Pollution in the Troposphere (MOPITT), the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emissions and Reflections (ASTER) radiometer, and the Clouds and Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) radiometer are the instruments involved. Early indications in March indicate that each of these instruments are working well and will be augmenting data bases from heritage instruments as well as producing new, unprecedented observations of land, ocean, and atmosphere features. Several missions will follow the Terra mission as the Earth Observing mission systems complete development and go into operation. These missions include EOS PM-1/'Aqua', Icesat, Vegetation Canopy Lidar (VCL), Jason/TOPEX Follow-on, the Chemistry mission, etc. As the Earth Observing systems completes its first phase in about 2004 a wealth of data enabling better understanding of the Earth and the management of its resources will have been provided. Considerable thought is beginning to be placed on what advances in technology can be implemented that will enable further advances in the early part of the 21st century; e.g., in the time from of 2020. Concepts such as 'constellation' missions or 'formation flying' with 'sensorcraft', 'sensor webs', autonomous operation of satellites, more on-board processing and delivery to individual users, data synthesis and analysis in real-time, etc. are being considered. With the data now having been and soon to be received plus the very real possibilities of further advances in use and applicability of data the potential for very significant gains in knowledge for Earth studies and applications looks quite high in the next decade or two.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Goddard Space Flight Center
Document Type
Conference Paper
Salomonson, Vincent V.
(NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD United States)
Date Acquired
August 19, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2000
Subject Category
Earth Resources And Remote Sensing
Meeting Information
Meeting: Space 2000 Conference and Exhibition
Location: Long Beach, CA
Country: United States
Start Date: September 19, 2000
End Date: September 21, 2000
Sponsors: American Inst. of Aeronautics and Astronautics
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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