NASA climate scientist Dr. Anne Douglass presented a Maniac Talk entitled "Satellite Observations - the Touchstone of Atmospheric Modeling." Anne shared some of her scientific career that is filled with unexpected twists and turns and even a few blind alleys, but most important her passion in satellite measurements of ozone and other trace gases, which have been her touchstone.
NASA climate scientist Dr. Gail Skofronick Jackson presented a Maniac Talk entitled "Falling Snow Detective." Gail talked about her experiences growing up with hurricanes in Florida and how that shaped her excitement in the science of detecting falling snow from space. Using paper snowflakes and audience help, she explained why snow is important on Earth and why scientists love and hate snow.
Dr. Robert Cahalan gave an interesting and stimulating talk entitled ‘Angel Hair, Ice Cream Castles, Dripping Faucets & Euler Fractals’. He combined anecdotes from his life and career with insights into the world around us from symmetry, fractals, and chaotic systems.
Over the past 20 years, the entire weather enterprise has made revolutionary advances in the prediction of weather. Remarkably, even greater progress has been made in the prediction of extreme weather events out to 7 days in advance (in some cases). In this presentation, Dr. Louis W. Uccellini, Director of the National Weather Service’s National Centers for Environmental Prediction, will review the advancements that have been made in the prediction of extreme events. He will then trace the revolutionary transformation of forecasting from a subjective “art” in the 1940’s to the applied physical science that it is today.
NASA climate scientist Claire Parkinson presented a Maniac Talk entitled "From Math to Civil Rights to Sea Ice to Geoengineering." Claire shared some of the sea-ice science she has been involved in at Goddard over the past 34 years, as well as key moments on her route to becoming a NASA scientist and key factors influencing her perspective on climate change.
Dr. Mian Chin is a physical scientist at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. She is the lead of several projects involving global modeling of tropospheric aerosols and chemistry. In the series of Maniac Talks we’ve had so far, Mian's talk provides an important linkage between the observations and modeling world.
Passion, persistence, diligence, teamwork, and service were the integral parts Gene Carl Feldman's Maniac Talk. Gene, an oceanographer at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, did an incredible job of delivering both enthusiasm and the nitty-gritty of his successful science career.
Presented by: Dr. Gene Feldman
AeroStat: Online Platform for the Statistical Intercomparison of Aerosols
AeroStat was proposed to address the challenges of intercomparison of aerosol datasets, which include disparities in spatial coverage, spatial consistency, temporal consistency, diurnal coverage and sensitivity to a variety of observing conditions. AeroStat also addresses the challenge of using multiple datasets to get a complete picture of aerosol phenomena, such as dust storms. To these ends, AeroStat provides an online environment for convenient access to: satellite and ground-based aerosol data; quality information and provenance; and Calibration and validation data. It also provides multi-sensor services, including multi-sensor intercomparison, cross-sensor bias assessment and adjustment, and maps of merged Level 2 data. It is linked to a collaborative environment, gSocial for aerosol researchers to share ideas, workflows and results. Aerostat was successfully completed and released to the user community in March 2012 at http://giovanni.gsfc.nasa.gov/aerostat/.
NASA’s Scientific and Technical Information (STI)/Document Availability Authorization (DAA) Process
NASA has a mandate to make the results of its research available to the widest possible audience. Before this scientific and technical information (STI) is released to the public, paperwork must be completed. This talk explains what STI is, who needs to fill out the paperwork, and the process of completing and uploading the information to the Center for AeroSpace Information. This presentation is targeted at scientists and technicians who present their work primarily at conferences and in journals.
The SED Virtual Machine Environment: What is it and Why?
The Sciences & Exploration Directorate's Virtual Machine Environment (November, 2011)
What is a Virtual Machine Environment, why would anyone want to use one, and how do you bill for it? This informal presentation gives an overview of the current SED VME and addresses its operational status, benefits and lessons learned.
Scientific Software and Test Driven Development
While test driven development (TDD) is gaining wide acceptance in many professional software communities, numerical algorithms present several unique challenges that have cast some doubt on the relevance of the methodology to the development of scientific software. Such concerns range from the need for reliable error estimates for roundoff and truncation errors to the general lack of known analytic solutions for codes designed for fundamental research. Fortunately, approaches can be found that minimize and/or circumvent these issues.
Dr. Robert Bindschadler presented his Maniac Talk on May 21, 2012 at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Dr. Bindschadler is an Emeritus Scientist at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. In his ~30 years of career, he has led ~17 expeditions to the Antarctica and has been a part of several other expeditions around the world.
Richard Stolarski (Emeritus Scientist, NASA/GSFC) gave a historic account of ozone research in the past century and how its continued understanding led to avoiding one of the biggest global climate-health risks in today’s world. Yes, indeed, we are talking about the “Ozone Hole.”
Dr P. K. Bhartia. Dr. Bhartia has been involved with the remote sensing of ozone for many years. In this talk, he presented the history, science, and technicality behind satellite-based retrievals of total column ozone amount from the past 45 years.
Presented by: Dr. P. K. Bhartia
The Many Faces of Giovanni
Giovanni, the Goddard online visualization and analysis tool, brings together and provides easy ways to analyze data from many space-based sensors, models and ground-based stations. The presentation gives examples of atmospheric, ocean, and land studies along with slides showing interdisciplinary and educational aspects of Giovanni. Short descriptions of multiple projects and partnerships made possible by Giovanni are also presented.
Monitoring Riparian Buffer Zones along the Tar River Basin using EOS Land Products
Riparian buffer zones are vital to the ecological and biological health of watershed ecosystems. This project focused on a 26,000 km2 region of North Carolina, USA, including the Tar River. We acquired MODIS Collection V005 1.0km retrievals of LST, LAI, and GPP over the Upper Tar River study area and created 30m change detection composites from surface reflectance datasets obtained from the Landsat Ecosystem Disturbance Adaptive Processing System (LEDAPS). Using ENVI and ArcGIS software, we then combined the satellite datasets with the North Carolina streams GIS Layer to monitor changes in the riparian buffer zone over a 10 year period (2000-2010). As a result of this research, which is planned to continue at least through 2013, the citizens of North Carolina will have access to new information and analysis that will provide insights into the state’s ongoing monitoring of the ecological functioning and biodiversity of the Tar River watershed.
Presented by: Jennith Thomas, Terence Goard, Shakeila Jones, and Ryan Wegener of Louisburg College, NC (USA)
Seasonal Influenza Dependency on Environmental and Meteorological Parameters
Influenza has affected the human race at least since the beginning of the written history. The earliest recorded influenza epidemic appears to be in 412 B.C. by Hippocrates, the Greek physician who is considered the father of western medicine. Influenza appears every year and almost everyone has had influenza one time or another. Although it is the most common disease, influenza inflicts considerable loss of human lives and productivity in societies each year. In each annual influenza epidemic, it is estimated that 5-15% of the populations are infected. For the U.S. alone, the annual economic cost may exceed $167 Billion.
Presented by: Jodi K. Haponski (GSSP Summer Program)
Ergonomics (or human factors) is the scientific discipline concerned with the understanding of interactions among humans and other elements of a system, and the profession that applies theory, principles, data and methods to design in order to optimize human well-being and overall system performance. In short, ergonomics is the science of fitting the workplace, furniture, tasks, tools and equipment to the worker.
Characterization of Aerosol Data Quality from MODIS for Coastal Regions
Characterization of Aerosol Data Quality from MODIS for Coastal Regions, by Jacob Anderson of U. Nebraska--Lincoln.
Summer intern Jacob Anderson characterized biases of MODIS aerosols relative to coastal Aeronet stations. Coastal sites can register MODIS aerosols computed with either the oceanic or land-based MODIS "dark-target" algorithms. In general, Land algorithm performs better than the Over-Ocean algorithm for coastal sites, with the disparity increasing as site location moves inland.
Giovanni in the Cloud, by Jane Campino of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Summer Intern Janie Campino presents her project to port the GES DISC Giovanni tool to the NASA Nebula Cloud. Cloud computing has the potential to accommodate the bursty performance requirements of user-demand-driven systems like Giovanni. Despite early termination of access to Nebula, the project was successful in demonstrating the ability to port a complex Web-based system such as Giovanni to Nebula.
Semantically Bridging Giovanni Data with Visualization
Summer intern Nick Del Rio presents his VisKo framework, which leverages the semantic web to automate visualization. VisKo can enable a plug and play visualization environment by using detailed descriptions of the data to drive the actual visualization using standard packages such as the Visualization Toolkit. Nick uses Giovanni to provide examples of real-life dataset visualization challenges.
Encouraging and Enabling Software Reuse in Earth Science at NASA
This talk will provide an introduction to the NASA Earth Science Data Systems Software Reuse Working Group. Its goals and charter will be reviewed, and the types of activities it undertakes summarized. Examples of its major activities and work products over the past few years will be presented, as well as the current plans for future work.
Working Toward an Earth Science Collaboratory
We propose the construction of an Earth Science Collaboratory within the Earth science community. It would consist of contributed and provisioned tools, services, data, workflows and experiments. Social networking features would make these contributions and the knowledge about them shareable and transparent, providing a rich data analysis environment for everyone from students to applications to science researchers.
MODIS Land Product Quality Assessment
This presentation describes methods employed by the Land Data Operational Product Evaluation (LDOPE) team to assess the quality of MODIS standard science products produced by the MODIS Adaptive Processing System (MODAPS). The methods include examining full resolution browse images and long-term trends of Level 3 ( gridded) products over ten 10 degree x 10 degree tiles situated over regions of the globe that cover representative land cover types and ecosystems. Additional topics in the talk include: the difference between quality assessment and validation of MODIS products; the process of how known issues in product quality are communicated and corrected; the role of the LDOPE team in assessing changes to algorithms before they are approved for use in the production system; and MODIS quality assessment tools developed by LDOPE and made available to the community.
Managing processing and storage for MODIS and OMI
MODIS and OMI data systems support a number of services: integration of science algorithms; Level 1 and Level 2 product development; science data production, reprocessing and quality assessment; and data archive and distribution. These systems are designed to meet varying demand for processing/distribution by shifting computing resources between clusters. Open source tools for monitoring performance and resources, provisioning accounts and rapidly updating software on over 1,000 servers simplify the task of maintaining and enhancing these systems.