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
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Press Releases & Feature Stories

Wildfire Threatening Dominican Republic's Highest City

Wildfires in Valle Nuevo National Park are threatening the Dominican Republic's highest city, Constanza.

NASA Contributes To First Global Review Of Arctic Marine Mammals

NASA aids study of the population trends of Arctic marine mammals with research about Arctic sea ice cover.

Hubble Eyes Galactic Refurbishment

The smudge of stars at the center of this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image is a galaxy known as UGC 5797.
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Ozone has been very, very good to me! [04/22/2015]

NASA climate scientist Dr. Richard Stolarski presented a Maniac Talk entitled "Ozone has been very, very good to me!" Rich was a player and an eye witness to much of the historical development of our understanding of the stratospheric ozone layer from the 1970s to the present. He shared some of the lessons learned on this journey, including major scientific and political developments that led to the Montreal Protocol that bans the production of many ozone-depleting substances.

Presented by: Dr. Richard Stolarski

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
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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.
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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.
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NASA Logo, National Aeronautics and Space Administration