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2005 AGU Conference: NASA Tip Sheet
NASA Announces American Geophysical Union Presentation

NASA researchers will present findings on a variety of Earth and space science topics at the 2005 Annual Fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union. The meeting runs Monday through Friday at the Moscone Convention Center West, 800 Howard Street, San Francisco. Sessions are open to the media.

NASA Presentations:

Lecture: Sagan Lecture -- Spirit, Opportunity, and Exploration of the Red Planet
Time: Mon., Dec., 5, 11 a.m. EST (8 a.m. PST), Marriott Salon 8
Session: P11D
Mars Exploration Rovers: One Martian Year of In Situ Planetary Geology I
Time: Mon., Dec., 5, 12 p.m. EST (9 a.m. PST), Marriott Salon 8
Session: P11E
Mars Exploration Rovers: One Martian Year of In Situ Planetary Geology II
Time: Mon., Dec., 5, 1:20 p.m. EST (10:20 a.m. PST), Marriott Salon 8
Session: P12A
NASA's Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, are finishing a full Martian year of operations on the surface of Mars, more than 22 months into a mission that was originally planned for three months. Opportunity examined a stack of exposed sedimentary layers that bear evidence of periods of blowing sand and shallow surface water. Spirit has identified an assortment of compositions in outcrop exposures on a hill that it is now descending.

Integration of Geospatial Technologies and Enhancing Science Initiatives in the North Dakota Tribal Colleges
Time: Dec. 5, 11:00 a.m. EST (8:00 a.m. PST), MCC 3000
Session: ED23B-01
NASA is working with a consortium of Tribal Colleges and Universities in cooperation with other Federal agencies to establish engineering degree programs at these schools. This session will explore NASA’s initial collaboration with Salish Kootenai College, Pablo, Mont.

Real-Time Monitoring and Payload Control Using Sample/ISC and Reveal in Atmospheric Electricity Research
Time: Dec. 5, 11:00 a.m. EST (8:00 a.m. PST), MCC Level 2
Session: IN21B-1184
This session discusses how NASA's Storm Airborne Monitor for Precipitation, Lightning and Environment, using Intelligent Sensor Control (SAMPLE/ISC), integrates aircraft payload, communications and data recording components with ground-based applications. SAMPLE/ISC allows researchers to track aircraft status in addition to real-time radar, lightning and satellite data.

Software and Hardware for Suborbital Telepresence: UAVs on the Web
Time: Mon., Dec. 5, 11:00 a.m. EST (8:00 a.m. PST), MCC Level 2
Session: IN21B-1185
This session spotlights NASA-developed Research Environment for Vehicle-Embedded Analysis on Linux (REVEAL) software, a self-configuring framework for real-time distributed data systems. REVEAL systems serve as a data transmission and communications gateway for internet-based experimenters and are well suited for long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicles. The systems provide traditional Earth sciences platform data systems configured for each experimenter and allow efficient distribution of data across the Internet.

Space-Borne Observations of Aerosols
Time: Mon., Dec. 5, 11:05 a.m. EST (8:05 a.m. PST) MCC 2004
Session: A11D-01
NASA satellites are an essential component of space-based aerosol observations. In this session, NASA’s Yoram Kaufman will offer an historical perspective on the study of aerosols from space, a discipline that aids in improved air quality forecasts worldwide.

Lidar Measurements From Space: New Global Results on Cloud and Aerosol Distribution and Overlap, PBL Height and Elevated Aerosol
Time: Mon., Dec. 5, 11:30 a.m. EST (8:30 a.m. PST), MCC 2004
Session: A11D-02
NASA's Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS), launched in 2003, uses a laser beam to explore Earth. It measures the presence and height of cloud layers and aerosol layers such as dust and pollution. NASA’s Jim Spinhirne will discuss how this instrument is enabling researchers to detect the thinnest clouds and haze thereby providing first-ever insight into how dust and pollution are transported.

Lecture: Earth's Energy Balance From Space: A 35-Year Perspective
Time: Mon., Dec., 5, 12 p.m. EST (9 a.m. PST), MCC 2004
Session: A11D-04
In this session, NASA’s Bruce Wielicki offers a history of the dramatic progress that has occurred over more than three decades in measuring planetary radiation, or Earth’s energy, from space with NASA’s Earth-orbiting satellites.

Increasing the Engineering Workforce Pipeline Through Hands-On Student Instrument Programs II
Time: Mon., Dec., 5, 4:40 p.m. EST (1:40 p.m. PST), MCC Level 2
Poster Session: ED13D
This poster session offers options for increasing student pursuit of engineering careers, including sessions on preparing students at minority institutions for work on NASA missions through student programs, and using ionospheric monitoring to engage students.

Lecture: Scientific Results of the ESA Mission Mars Express I and Express II
Time for Express I: Mon., Dec. 5, 4:40 p.m. EST (1:40 p.m. PST), MCC 3004
Time for Express II: Mon., Dec. 5, 7 p.m. EST (4 p.m. PST) MCC 3004
Session: P13C, P14A
This session reveals results from the European Space Agency's Mars Express orbiter, that include observations by the radar instrument, Mars Advanced Radar for Subsurface and Ionospheric Sounding, that NASA helped provide. This radar instrument has detected a semi-circular underground structure that scientists believe to be a buried crater partially filled with a thick layer of possibly ice-rich material. The instrument has also revealed an unexpectedly lumpy and complex shape of Mars' ionosphere, a radio-reflective layer at the top of the atmosphere.

Hydrology from Space I and II
Time: Mon., Dec. 5, 4:40 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. EST (1:40 p.m.-3:30 p.m. PST) MCC 3002
Session: H13J
Time: Mon., Dec. 5, 7:00 p.m. - 8:45 p.m. EST (4:00 p.m. – 5:45 p.m. PST) MCC 3002
Session: H14B
These two sessions on “Hydrology from Space” will highlight space-based findings on environmental change in the global water cycle. Data from NASA and other satellites contributed to related research developments, including the evolution of surface water extent in central Siberia; near real-time monitoring of African surface water; and a new strategy for integrated water cycle observations. Presenters include Dennis Lettenmaier, University of Washington, Seattle, and Larry Smith, University of California, Los Angeles.

Monitoring Volcanic Plumes and Clouds with NASA Earth Observing System
Time: Tues., Dec. 6, 11 a.m. EST (8 a.m. PST), MCC Level 1
Poster Session: V21E-0663
The NASA series of Earth Observing System satellites present volcanologists with a complimentary new set of tools for studying the content and transport of volcanic plumes and clouds. This presentation focuses on the analyses of data from the Terra and Aqua spacecraft, including a data time-series from the 2002-03 eruption of Mount Etna, as well as more recent eruptions in Russia's Kamchatka Penninsula and the Mariana Islands.

Thermal Infrared Remote Sensing of Mars from TES and THEMIS I
Time: Tues, Dec. 6, 11:00 a.m. EST (8:00 a.m. PST), MCC Level 1
Poster Session: P21C
This presentation reveals information about the composition of Mars' surface, as seen by the Thermal Infrared Spectrometer on NASA's Mars Global Surveyor and the Thermal Emission Imaging System on NASA's Mars Odyssey.

Using MISR and MODIS Data for Detection and Analysis of Smoke Plume Injection Heights Over North America During Summer 2005
Time: Tues., Dec. 6, 11 a.m. EST (8 a.m. PST), MCC Level 2
Poster Session: A21B-0853
This session investigates the relationship between climate, fires and air quality in order to predict the effect of possible future climate changes on North American air quality. Partial results from an ongoing five-year study that uses data from NASA's Terra spacecraft to gather statistics on smoke plumes from North American fires will be presented.

KU-Band Radar Observations of Extreme Surface Water Conditions
Time: Tues., Dec. 6, 11:00 a.m. EST (8 a.m. PST), MCC Level 2
Poster Session: H21D-1381
This presentation gives an overview of how spaceborne Ku-band radars such as NASA's QuikScat satellite scatterometer can measure extreme conditions of liquid and solid surface water on land, ice and oceans. Results include data from Hurricanes Katrina and Ivan, last winter's record-breaking California rains, drought in the U.S. Midwest and Kenya, and cold lands data from Greenland, the Arctic and Antarctica.

Teacher Professional Development Programs for Monitoring Authentic Scientific Research in the Classroom III
Time: Tues., Dec. 6, 11:00 a.m. EST (8:00 a.m. PST), MCC Level 2
Poster Session: ED23A
This series of posters highlight a plethora of professional development programs to improve teacher knowledge of and ability to instruct in the sciences, including a session on the NASA-sponsored “GLOBE at Night” program (Session ED23A-1238).

Satellite Measurements of Coupled Ocean-Atmospheric Interaction
Time: Tues., Dec. 6, 11:15 a.m. EST (8:15 a.m. PST) MCC 3012
Session: OS21D-02
Based on research using data from NASA’s QuikSCAT and Aqua satellites, this presentation highlights seminal findings on the interaction between ocean currents and surface winds at previously undetected scales.

High-Resolution Mapping of the Arctic Sea Ice Cover With Radarsat and ICESat for Climate and Process Studies
Time: Tues., Dec. 6, 11:45 a.m. EST (8:45 a.m. PST), MCC 3012
Session: OS21D-04
In this session, researchers will discuss how NASA’s ICESat and RADARSAT satellite data were used to examine changes in Arctic sea ice and shed light on the current trend in sea ice reduction due to climate change.

Mid-Depth Circulation of the World's Oceans: A First Look at the Argo Array
Time: Tues., Dec. 6, 12:15 p.m. EST (9:15 a.m. PST) MCC 3012
Session: OS21D-06
This presentation highlights a technological breakthrough expected to have profound impact on oceanography and climate research. The scientists used radar altimeters, NASA satellite-based devices in their research. The radar altimeters provide the first direct measurements of ocean flow by capturing vertical measurements of land and sea surfaces.

An Exploratory Study of the Impact of Pyro-Cumulonibus Injections of Aerosol on the Upper Troposphere and Lower Stratosphere Cilmate During Northern Hemisphere Summer
Time: Tues. Dec. 6, 1:20 p.m. EST (10:20 a.m. PST), MCC 2004
Session: A22B-01
The direct transport of forest fire smoke into the stratosphere by pyro-cumulonimbus clouds provides a dramatic example of the rapid rise of dust and particles from the lower atmosphere. This presentation will discuss the role of these events in aerosols in the lower stratosphere and its effect on the circulation of the atmosphere as seen in computer model simulations.

Chlorophyll Blooms in the Oligotropic Gyres: Ocean Oases?
Time: Tues., Dec. 6, 1:35 p.m. EST (10:35 a.m. PST), MCC 3012
Session: OS22B-02
This session discusses NASA’s SeaWIFS satellite observations, which show large unexplained phytoplankton blooms in the Pacific Ocean that can be as large as the state of California. The blooms develop in a part of the ocean with low nutrients that would seem incapable of supporting them. A second talk, “Western Pacific Modulation of Large Phytoplankton Blooms in the Central and Eastern Equatorial Pacific,” at 2:35 p.m. EST (11:35 a.m. PST) on Tuesday (Session OS22B-06), details a recently discovered pattern of large blooms following El Niños and examines a hypothesis for their existence more than 6,214 miles away.

Southern Ocean "Superbloom" of 2000
Time: Tues., Dec. 6, 4:40 p.m. EST (1:40 p.m. PST), MCC 3012
Session: OS23B-01
This presentation offers a valuable glimpse into seasonal and inter-annual fluctuations in ocean carbon cycling in the Antarctic’s Southern Ocean, an area responsible for removal of a large fraction of atmospheric CO2. This study finds these high fluctuation rates have implications for the world’s marine ecosystems and the global carbon cycle.

A Decade-Long Record of Global Sea-Surface Height From Satellite Altimetry: Status and Outlook
Time: Tues., Dec. 6, 8:20 p.m. EST (5:20 p.m. PST), MCC 3001
Session: U24A-03
This session presents findings from the long-term data record of the sea-surface height of Earth's ocean, which is revealing basin-wide changes in the circulation patterns of the oceans and how they affect atmospheric variability.

Smoking Pyrocumulonimbus: Analysis of a Major Canadian Boreal Fire Blowup From Satellite and Ground Measurements
Time: Wed., Dec. 7, 12:40 p.m. EST (9:40 a.m. PST), MCC 2002
Session: A31C-07
An August 2003 Canadian forest fire exploded into a pyro-cumulonimbus cloud, creating a distinct plume of smoke. This presenations focuses on the use of NASA satellites to study the life cycle of this plume, cloud-top changes, and the transport of smoke from the lower atmosphere through to the stratosphere.

Teleconnection Over the Atlantic: The Bodele Depression, A Single Dust Source is Responsible to Most of the Wellbeing of the Amazon Rainforest
Time: Wed., Dec. 7, 4:40 p.m. EST (1:40 p.m. PST), MCC Level 2
Session: A33C-0920
Saharan dust, suggested to be the main mineral source that fertilizes the Amazon basin, is generally carried on the westward trade winds from Africa between November and March. Using a combination of data from three satellite instruments, this presentation will show that the emissions and transport of Saharan dust to the Amazon originate mostly from a small source northeast of Lake Chad.

Did Plio-Pleistocene Warm Events Cause Destabilization of Ice Sheets, or Vice-Versa?
Time: Thurs., Dec. 8, 6:25 p.m. EST (3:25 p.m. PST), MCC 3006
Session: PP43C-08
Historically, short duration, apparently climate-changing events occurred during the Pliocene and early Pleistocene eras. Emerging evidence suggests that major changes also took place in the Greenland and West Antarctic ice sheets at the same time as these events. In this talk, NASA researchers explore physical processes and mechanisms at play. They also argue the sources for the global signals we interpret as "warm events," and how we can better understand what, if any, implications there may be for future behavior of the ice sheets.

A Landsat Record of North American Forest Disturbance
Time: Fri., Dec. 8, 11 a.m. EST (8 a.m. PST), MCC Level 1
Session: B51C-0220
Analysis of Landsat satellite data has proven useful in diagnosing forest disturbance, growth and recovery. This presentation examines regions with high rates of biomass loss (disturbance) or gains (recovery) and finds a strong correlation between areas of harvesting and fire activity, such as the southeastern U.S., Maine and the Pacific Northwest.

Observed Trends of NDVI and Climate Over the Amazon Basin
Time: Thurs., Dec. 8, 4:40 p.m. EST (1:40 p.m. PST), MCC Level 1
Session: B43B-0269
The carbon balance of Amazon rainforests plays a key role in the global carbon budget. NASA-funded researchers suggest a possible increasing trend in the growth rate of these forests. This presentation will discuss the probability that an increasing vegetation trend could be due to the rise in short-wave radiation that is enhancing growth in these light-limited ecosystems.

For information about the American Geophysical Union 2005 Joint Assembly Meeting, on the Web, visit:

For more information about other NASA presentations at the AGU meeting, on the Web, please visit:

Rob Gutro
Goddard Space Flight Center