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Sciences and Exploration Directorate (600) Highlights

Science Highlights


Atmospheric Science Highlights

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  • – Improving Simulated Radar Signatures in the Goddard Cloud Model
  • – Saharan Dust Prevents Phosphorus Depletion in the Amazon Rainforest
  • – Is the Antarctic Ozone Hole Beginning to Recover?

Hydrospheric and Biospheric Sciences Highlights

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  • – Arctic Sea Ice Maximum and Minimum Extent 1979-2015
  • – Algodones Dunes characterization campaign 2015
  • – Timely and accurate winter wheat production forecasts for major producers using MODIS data and growing degree day information
  • – Climate Data Initiative Releases Human Health Theme
See Directorate Science Highlights Archive »

Press Releases & Feature Stories

Central America on Fire

The whole of Central America has been captured on fire in this image from April 23, 2015 by the Aqua satellite.

Calbuco Volcano Erupts

On April 22, 2015, Cabulco volcano in southern Chilé began erupting for the first time since 1972.

NASA Unveils Celestial Fireworks as Official Image for Hubble 25th Anniversary

The brilliant tapestry of young stars flaring to life resemble a glittering fireworks display in the 25th anniversary NASA Hubble Space Telescope image.
See Directorate Press Releases & Feature Stories Archive »


Sheer luck: How I stumbled my way through a fantastic scientific career [03/31/2015]

Dr. Eugenia Kalnay, Distinguished University Professor and the first woman to get a doctorate in Meteorology from MIT, presented a Maniac Talk entitled, "Sheer luck: How I stumbled my way through a fantastic scientific career." Eugenia shared her life and times at the University of Buenos Aires, MIT, NASA, NOAA and University of Maryland, infused with dreams from her mother.

Presented by: Dr. Eugenia Kalnay

Some pretty good rules for a career: Newman’s Own Lessons [02/25/2015]

NASA climate scientist Dr. Paul Newman presented a Maniac Talk entitled "Some pretty good rules for a career: Newman's own lessons." Paul traced his journey from middle of Seattle, where he grew up, moved to rural Iowa for graduate school, and made his way to NASA/GSFC in 1984, and discussed lessons to be learned from the ozone depletion story.

Presented by: Dr. Paul Newman

How much first-principle physics do we need in remote-sensing and atmospheric-radiation research? [01/26/2015]

NASA climate scientist Dr. Michael I. Mishchenko presented a Maniac Talk entitled "How much first-principle physics do we need in remote-sensing and atmospheric-radiation research." Michael explained his skepticism and how it has shaped his contributions to the disciplines of electromagnetic scattering, radiative transfer, and remote sensing, which have found widespread use.

Presented by: Dr. Michael Mishchenko
See Directorate Presentations Archive »


ASD Annual Report 2013

Astrophysics Science Division Annual Report (2013)

A summary of awards, research, projects, missions, and education/public outreach activities of the Astrophysics Science Division at Goddard Space Flight Center.
Download ASDAnnualReport2013.pdf
Still from Paint by Particle simulation of the atmosphere that captured how winds move aerosols around the world

GMAO Annual Report & Research Highlights 2011-2012

Over the last year, the Global Modeling and Assimilation Office (GMAO) has continued to advance our GEOS-5-based systems, updating products for both weather and climate applications.
Download GMAO_2011-2012Highlights.pdf
See Directorate Reports Archive »

Local News

Dr. Colleen Hartman will assume the leadership of the SED on Mar 31

Colleen Harman profile photo Dr. Colleen Hartman will assume the leadership of the Sciences and Exploration Directorate as its director, on March 31, 2015.

Colleen has served as SED's acting director since February 2014, as well as Goddard’s deputy director for science, operations and performance since July 2012. She has a long and distinguished career with NASA, NOAA, the White House and in academia, having held a variety of leadership posts, including the acting associate administrator, deputy associate administrator, planetary division director in the Science Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters, and deputy associate administrator at NOAA.

Through her impressive career, Colleen has served as NASA program manager for dozens of missions, built and launched scientific balloon payloads, and worked on robotic vision. She has been instrumental in developing innovative approaches to powering space probes, including in-space propulsion and nuclear power. By gaining White House and congressional approval, she spearheaded the creation of a whole new line of planetary missions called New Frontiers. We are privileged that Colleen brings with her this extensive scientific expertise and breadth of experience as she takes on the vital mission role of director, Sciences and Exploration Directorate.
See Directorate News Archive »


Colorful and Plankton-Full Patagonian Waters

Late spring and summer weather brings blooms of color to the Atlantic Ocean off of South America, at least from a satellite view.

Retreat of the Columbia Glacier

Scientists have long studied Alaska's fast-moving Columbia Glacier, a tidewater glacier descending through the Chugach Mountains into Prince William Sound. Yet the river of ice continues to surprise.

Ocean Data Shows 'Climate Dance' of Plankton

The greens and blues of the ocean color from NASA satellite data have provided new insights into how climate and ecosystem processes affect the growth cycles of phytoplankton.
See Directorate Image Archive »
NASA Logo, National Aeronautics and Space Administration