Hydrological Sciences (617) Local News Archive

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Earth Expeditions Blog: SnowEx Scientist Finds her Love of Snow Science on the Slopes

Being a snow scientist is an interesting career. Growing up in a small town in Montana, I was immersed in snow. But I saw it as one set thing—a blanket, unmoving, a cold, white mass. Only far later in life did I learn what a changing and integral role snow plays in our day-to-day life. Snow drives the winter economies of most Western states, acts as water reservoirs for those same regions and far beyond and is a fundamental part of life—whether we see it fall on our city streets or not.

Cho and Vuyovich Receive Editors' Choice Award

Congratulations to Eunsang Cho (617/UMD) and Carrie Vuyovich (617) for receiving the Water Resources Research Editors’ Choice Award, which was highlighted at the AGU Hydrology Section business meeting at the AGU Fall meeting.

Kim Member of Team Awarded NOAA Bronze Medal Award

A multi-agency group including Edward Kim (617) was recently awarded a NOAA Bronze Medal, the highest honor that can be granted by NOAA's administrator. The group also included Karen St. Germain, our new HQ Earth Science Division Director, Harry Cikanek, the Director of the NOAA Center for Satellite Applications and Research, Mitch Goldberg, JPSS Program Scientist, and Jeff Piepmeier (555), among others. The team was nominated by the Office of Under Secretary "for conducting a study on the potential effects of 5G interference on the 24GHz remote sensing band, and working closely with the NOAA Acting Administrator and Department of Commerce leadership to communicate the risks to satellite remote sensing and weather prediction if safeguards are not in place."

Earth Day Countdown Blog: T-8–Water for Crops

As the climate of our home planet changes, some places are drying out and others are getting wetter, including the land producing the food we eat.

Earth Day Countdown: T-20–Monitoring Drought from Space

NASA researchers have partnered with the University of Nebraska, which works with U.S. and international groups, to develop and distribute tools for monitoring drought from space.

Coronavirus Impacts Field Work

Goddard Space Flight Center airborne campaigns are highlighted in a recent Capital Weather Gang article in The Washington Post. The article describes the novel coronavirus's impact on scientific research and field campaigns.

Earth Expeditions: A Breathtaking View – Literally

After visiting with part of the SnowEx 2020 airborne team, we headed up the mountain to rendezvous with the ground team, stationed at Grand Mesa Lodge.

Earth Expeditions: Snow Science Two Miles in the Sky

At a majestic 10,500 feet elevation, Grand Mesa is the world’s tallest mesa, or flat-topped mountain. It’s also the site of an intense month of data collection by NASA’s SnowEx 2020, a ground and airborne campaign testing a variety of instruments that measure the water contained in winter snowpack.

Bolten Interviewed on ABC Radio National

John Bolten gave a live interview for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) Radio National Late Night Live story, "Disappearing Water." He discussed the efforts by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center and NASA's Applied Sciences Program to monitor and address the Australian wildfires. He also discussed SMAP and GRACE applications for improved water resource management and activities by NASA's Earth Science Division to study changing climate and extreme events.

United States Hydrologic trends (1980-2015) data product released using the National Climate Assessment - Land Data Assimilation Version 2.0 (NCA-LDAS V2.0)

The Hydrological Sciences Laboratory and the Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Services Center (GES DISC) has released the National Climate Assessment - Land Data Assimilation Version 2.0 (NCA-LDAS V2.0) hydrologic trends data product. The data product consists of annual trends in 15 terrestrial water and energy balance components over the conterminous U.S., created using the NCA-LDAS v2.0 daily dataset for the water years 1980-2015.

ICESat-2’s Inland Water Data Product (ATL13), Version 2, released

ICESat-2’s most recent Inland Water Data Product (ATL13 v2) was released in December 2019. ATL13 v2 now provides water height statistics, significant wave height, and associated subsurface data for global water bodies including lakes, reservoirs, estuaries, bays, and a 7 km near-shore buffer. In addition to more accurate products, ATL13 v2 further includes a new coarse resolution water depth product, where meteorology and water properties permit. Data products and supporting technical information are available from the National Snow and Ice Data Center.

Rodell selected as Associate Deputy Director for Hydrosphere, Biosphere, and Geophysics

Congratulations to Laboratory Chief Matthew Rodell on his selection as the new Associate Deputy Director for Hydrosphere, Biosphere, and Geophysics (HBG) in the Earth Sciences Division. His appointment is effective December 8, 2019.

LIS and SMAP Teams Transition to Operations

Congratulations to the LIS and SMAP teams on the successful transition to operations. LIS version 7.2 went operational on November 19, 2019, at the U.S. Air Force, which enables the near real-time assimilation of SMAP data in their operations.

2019 Clarivate Analytics Highly Cited Researchers

Several 610 researchers were named to the annual list identifying scientists and social scientists who produced multiple papers ranking in the top 1% of citations for their field and year of publication. Congratulations to Greg Faluvegi (611/CU), Cynthia Rosenzweig (611), Alex Ruane (611), Joanna Joiner (614), Matthew Rodell (617), Jeffrey Masek (618), Douglas Morton (618), and Benjamin Poulter (618),

Laboratory Scientists Participate in NASA–Rio Partnership

NASA and the city of Rio de Janeiro are working together to connect the use of Earth observation to the urban scale for disaster modeling, crisis response, and city management.

FY2019 SECP graduates

Goddard’s Science and Engineering Collaboration Program (SECP) serves as a training ground for future lead engineers and principal investigators. The SECP was created to bridge the gap between the GSFC scientific and engineering communities to strengthen engineers’ understanding of the programs and culture within Code 600, increase scientists’ understanding of the resources available within Code 500 for developing new concepts, and to foster collaboration between Code 500 and Code 600 on new space flight technology ideas and concepts. William Brinckerhoff (690) and Rajat Bindlish (617) “graduated” from the program on October 9.
photo of Brinckerhoff receiving certificate photo of Bindlish receiving certificate

Bolten Receives a 2018 Arthur S. Flemming Award


L to R: Dr. John Bolten with Mr. Lawrence Friedl, director of the Applied Sciences Program within the Earth Science Division at NASA Headquarters.

Congratulations to Dr. John Bolten of the Hydrological Sciences Laboratory for his 2018 Arthur S. Flemming Award. Named in honor of Arthur S. Flemming, who served in government for more than six decades spanning seven administrations and including service as the secretary of health, education and welfare under President Dwight D. Eisenhower, awardees are recognized for excellence in federal service. Dr. Bolten was recognized in the category of "Applied Science & Engineering" for his work in applying satellite remote sensing, land surface modeling and data assimilation to water resources management, agricultural forecasting and flood monitoring. Dr. Bolten is a Physical Scientist in the Hydrological Sciences Laboratory and also the Associate Program Manager for NASA’s Applied Sciences – Water Resources Program.

Poster Blowout 2019 is in the books!

photo of people at the poster party

Photos from this year's Poster Blowout are available now. Congratulations to everyone, especially this year's winners!

Newman and Kirschbaum are President-elects

Congratulations to Paul Newman (610) and Dalia Kirschbaum (617) on being elected president-elect for the American Geophysical Union Atmospheric Sciences and Natural Hazards sections, respectively. They will begin their terms on January 1, 2019, and serve for 2 years.

Bolten Quoted in Business Insider Article

"I think rivers are treated as a renewable resource when they're really not," John Bolten, a hydrologist and the associate program manager of water resources at NASA's Applied Sciences Program, told Business Insider. "It's remarkable how many people are dependent on access to clean water. If rivers are not conserved and used properly, it's a detriment to everyone." That's well worth considering on World Rivers Day, held annually at the end of September.

Blog: Was Washington DC really in a flash drought?

Members of the Hydrological Sciences Laboratory recently published a blog post as a a written response to a Capital Weather Gang article identifying the early July dry spell in the DC region as a flash drought. The post provides the definition of a flash drought as defined in recent publications, and includes figures from the North American Land Data Assimilation System (NLDAS) and the U.S. Drought Monitor to show that the region had not quite entered into drought conditions before the rain over the last week.

Blog: Making a map of water and ice

Hydrologist Matt Rodell at NASA's Goddard Spaceflight Center has been living with first-of-its-kind data from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) for 16 years. That data shows big changes of mass in specific spots on Earth, primarily the result of the movement of water and ice, but it doesn’t tell them what causes those changes. That's where Matt and the GRACE team come in, painstakingly connecting these observed changes to the loss of ice sheets, depleting aquifers, and climate change. It's a problem they're still working on, getting closer every day. Matt explains the years-long process in his own words.

Landslide Viewer displayed at GIS Conference Map Gallery

The GIS web application Landslide Viewer, which was developed by Caroline Juang (617/SSAI), Dalia Kirschbaum (617), Thomas Stanley (617/USRA), and Jim Shute (606.2/CSC), and which maps landslide event data from the Global Landslide Catalog (GLC), was displayed in the 2018 Esri Federal GIS Conference’s Map Gallery, in Washington, DC, March 20-21.

Poster Blowout 2018

Note from the Director:
I would like to thank the Director’s Science Committee for putting on an amazingly successful event where scientists and engineers across Goddard shared their work and made new contacts. The interdisciplinary interactions were especially exciting and crossed all four science disciplines.

Click the title of this news item or the image below for more images from the poster party. scientists standing in front of a poster

Kirschbaum Awarded a 2016 Arthur S. Flemming Award


L to R: Mr. Gene Dodaro (Comptroller General of the United States, U.S. Government Accountability Office), Dr. Dalia Kirschbaum, and Dr. Kathryn Newcomer (Director of Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration, The George Washington University).

Congratulations to Dr. Dalia Kirschbaum of the Hydrological Sciences Laboratory for her 2016 Arthur S. Flemming Award. Named in honor of Arthur S. Flemming, whose civil service spanned seven decades and 11 presidencies, awardees are recognized for excellence in federal service. Dr. Kirschbaum was recognized in the category of Applied Science & Engineering. Her citation reads, "Dr. Kirschbaum works on evaluating rainfall-triggered landslides around the world. She applied satellite-based surface and rainfall information within landslide hazard models to support situational awareness of these hazards in near real time. This technique has been used for disaster response by countries around the world as well as groups such as FEMA, the World Bank, the Pacific Disaster Center and others."
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