Sample records for geoscience laser altimeter

  1. Geoscience Laser Altimeter System: Characteristics and Performance of the Altimeter Receiver (United States)

    Sun, Xiao-Li; Yi, Dong-Hui; Abshire, James B.


    The Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) on board ICESat spacecraft measures the surface height (altimetry) via the time of flight of its 1064 nm laser pulse. The GLAS laser transmitter produces 6 ns wide pulses with 70 mJ energy at 1064 nm at a 40 Hz rate. The altimeter receiver consists of a telescope, aft optics, a silicon avalanche photodiode, and electronic amplifiers. The transmitted and echo pulse waveforms are digitized at 1 GHz rate. The laser pulse time of flight is determined on the ground from the two digitized pulse waveforms and their positions in the full waveform record (about 5.4 ms ong) by computing the pulse centroids or by curve fitting. The GLAS receiver algorithms in on board software selects the two waveform segments containing the transmitted and the echo pulses and sends them to ground. The probability of echo pulse detection and the accuracy of time of flight measurement depend on the received signal level, the background light within the receiver field of view, the inherent detector and amplifier noise, the quantization of the digitizer, and some times by cloud obscurations. A receiver model has been developed to calculate the probability of detection and accuracy of the altimeter measurements with these noise sources. From prelaunch testing, the minimum detectable echo pulse energy for 90% detection probability was about 0.1 fj/pulse onto the detector. Such a receiver sensitivity allows GLAS to measure the surface height through clouds with optical density less than 2. The echo pulse energy required to achieve 10 cm ranging accuracy was found to be about 3 times higher than the minimum detectable signal level. The smallest single shot range measurement error, which was determined by ranging to a fixed target with strong echo pulses and no background light, was 2 to 3cm. The maximum linear response echo pulse energy was 10 fJ/pulse for the strongest echo signals, assuming a Lambertian scattering snow surface, clear sky atmosphere

  2. Regional applicability of forest height and aboveground biomass models for the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (United States)

    Dirk Pflugmacher; Warren B. Cohen; Robert E. Kennedy; Michael. Lefsky


    Accurate estimates of forest aboveground biomass are needed to reduce uncertainties in global and regional terrestrial carbon fluxes. In this study we investigated the utility of the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) onboard the Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite for large-scale biomass inventories. GLAS is the first spaceborne lidar sensor that will...

  3. In-Flight Thermal Performance of the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) Instrument (United States)

    Grob, Eric; Baker, Charles; McCarthy, Tom


    The Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) instrument is NASA Goddard Space Flight Center's first application of Loop Heat Pipe technology that provides selectable/stable temperature levels for the lasers and other electronics over a widely varying mission environment. GLAS was successfully launched as the sole science instrument aboard the Ice, Clouds, and Land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) from Vandenberg AFB at 4:45pm PST on January 12, 2003. After SC commissioning, the LHPs started easily and have provided selectable and stable temperatures for the lasers and other electronics. This paper discusses the thermal development background and testing, along with details of early flight thermal performance data.

  4. A sample design for globally consistent biomass estimation using lidar data from the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) (United States)

    Sean P. Healey; Paul L. Patterson; Sassan S. Saatchi; Michael A. Lefsky; Andrew J. Lister; Elizabeth A. Freeman


    Lidar height data collected by the Geosciences Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) from 2002 to 2008 has the potential to form the basis of a globally consistent sample-based inventory of forest biomass. GLAS lidar return data were collected globally in spatially discrete full waveform "shots," which have been shown to be strongly correlated with aboveground forest...

  5. Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) Loop Heat Pipes: An Eventual First Year On-Orbit (United States)

    Grob, E.; Baker, C.; McCarthy, T.


    Goddard Space Flight Center's Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) is the sole scientific instrument on the Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) that was launched on January 12, 2003 from Vandenberg AFB. A thermal control architecture based on propylene Loop Heat Pipe technology was developed to provide selectable/stable temperature control for the lasers and other electronics over the widely varying mission environment. Following a nominal LHP and instrument start-up, the mission was interrupted with the failure of the first laser after only 36 days of operation. During the 5-month failure investigation, the two GLAS LHPs and the electronics operated nominally, using heaters as a substitute for the laser heat load. Just prior to resuming the mission, following a seasonal spacecraft yaw maneuver, one of the LHPs deprimed and created a thermal runaway condition that resulted in an emergency shutdown of the GLAS instrument. This paper presents details of the LHP anomaly, the resulting investigation and recovery, along with on-orbit flight data during these critical events.

  6. Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) on the ICESat Mission: Science Measurement Performance since Launch (United States)

    Sun, X.; Abshire, J. B.; Riris, H.; McGarry, J.; Sirota, M.


    The Geoscience Laser Altimeter System is a space lidar and the primary instrument on NASA's ICESat mision. Since launch in January 2003 GLAS has produced about 544 million measurements of the Earth's surface and atmosphere. It has made global measurements of the Earth's icesheets, land topography and atmosphere with unprecedented vertical resolution and accuracy. GLAS was first activated for science measurements in February 2003. Since then its operation and performance has confirmed many pre-launch expectations and exceed a few of the most optimistic expectations in vertical resolution and sensitivity. However GLAS also suffered an unexpected failure with its first laser, and the GLAS measurements have yielded some surprises in other areas. This talk will give a post-launch assessment of the science measurement performance of the GLAS instrument, and compare the measurement environment and its science measurements to pre-launch expectations. It also will address some of what has been learned from the GLAS design, operations and measurements which may benefit future space lidar.

  7. Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) on the ICESat Mission: Initial Science Measurement Performance (United States)

    Abshire, J. B.; Sun, X.; Riris, H.; Sirota, M.; McGarry, J.; Palm, S.


    The Geoscience Laser Altimeter System is the space lidar on the NASA ICESat mision. Its design combines an altimeter with 5 cm precision with a laser pointing angle determination system and a dual wavelength cloud and aerosol lidar. GLAS measures the range to the Earth's surface with 1064 nm laser pulses. Each laser pulse produces a precision pointing measurement from the stellar reference system (SRS) and an echo pulse waveform, which permits range determination and waveform spreading analysis. The single shot ranging accuracy is < 10 cm for ice surfaces with slopes < 2 degrees. GLAS also measures atmospheric backscatter profiles at both 1064 and 532 nm. The 1064 nm measurements use an analog Si APD detector and measure the height and profile the backscatter signal from thicker clouds. The measurements at 532 nm use photon counting detectors, and will measure the vertical height distributions of optically thin clouds and aerosol layers Before launch, the measurement performance of GLAS was evaluated using a lidar test instrument called the Bench Check Equipment (BCE). The BCE was developed in parallel with GLAS and served as an inverse altimeter, inverse lidar and a stellar source simulator. It was used to simulate the range of expected optical inputs to the GLAS receiver by illuminating its telescope with simulated background light as well as laser echoes with known powers, energy levels, widths and delay times. The BCE also allowed monitoring of the transmitted laser energy, the angle measurements of the SRS, the co-alignment of the transmitted laser beam to the receiver line of sight, and performance of the flight science algorithms. Performance was evaluated during the GLAS development, before and after environmental tests, and after delivery to the spacecraft. The ICESat observatory was launched into a 94 degree inclination, 590 km altitude circular polar orbit on January 12, 2003. Beginning in early February, GLAS was powered on tested in stages. Its 1064 nm

  8. Testing of the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) Prototype Loop Heat Pipe (United States)

    Douglas, Donya; Ku, Jentung; Kaya, Tarik


    This paper describes the testing of the prototype loop heat pipe (LHP) for the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS). The primary objective of the test program was to verify the loop's heat transport and temperature control capabilities under conditions pertinent to GLAS applications. Specifically, the LHP had to demonstrate a heat transport capability of 100 W, with the operating temperature maintained within +/-2K while the condenser sink was subjected to a temperature change between 273K and 283K. Test results showed that this loop heat pipe was more than capable of transporting the required heat load and that the operating temperature could be maintained within +/-2K. However, this particular integrated evaporator-compensation chamber design resulted in an exchange of energy between the two that affected the overall operation of the system. One effect was the high temperature the LHP was required to reach before nucleation would begin due to inability to control liquid distribution during ground testing. Another effect was that the loop had a low power start-up limitation of approximately 25 W. These Issues may be a concern for other applications, although it is not expected that they will cause problems for GLAS under micro-gravity conditions.

  9. Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) Instrument: Flight Loop Heat Pipe (LHP) Acceptance Thermal Vacuum Test (United States)

    Baker, Charles; Butler, Dan; Ku, Jentung; Grob, Eric; Swanson, Ted; Nikitkin, Michael; Powers, Edward I. (Technical Monitor)


    Two loop heat pipes (LHPs) are to be used for tight thermal control of the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) instrument, planned for flight in late 2001. The LHPs are charged with Propylene as a working fluid. One LHP will be used to transport 110 W from a laser to a radiator, the other will transport 160 W from electronic boxes to a separate radiator. The application includes a large amount of thermal mass in each LHP system and low initial startup powers. The initial design had some non-ideal flight design compromises, resulted in a less than ideal charge level for this design concept with a symmetrical secondary wick. This less than ideal charge was identified as the source of inadequate performance of the flight LHPs during the flight thermal vacuum test in October of 2000. We modified the compensation chamber design, re-built and charged the LHPs for a final LHP acceptance thermal vacuum test. This test performed March of 2001 was 100% successful. This is the last testing to be performed on the LHPs prior to instrument thermal vacuum test. This sensitivity to charge level was shown through varying the charge on a Development Model Loop Heat Pipe (DM LHP) and evaluating performance at various fill levels. At lower fills similar to the original charge in the flight units, the same poor performance was observed. When the flight units were re-designed and filled to the levels similar to the initial successful DM LHP test, the flight units also successfully fulfilled all requirements. This final flight Acceptance test assessed performance with respect to startup, low power operation, conductance, and control heater power, and steady state control. The results of the testing showed that both LHPs operated within specification. Startup on one of the LHPs was better than the other LHP because of the starter heater placement and a difference in evaporator design. These differences resulted in a variation in the achieved superheat prior to startup. The LHP with

  10. Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS): Final Test Report of DM LHP TV Testing. Revised (United States)

    Baker, Charles


    The Demonstration Model (DM) Loop Heat Pipe (LHP) was tested at Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) during September and October, 1999. The LHP system was placed in the Dynavac 36 in. chamber in Building 4. The test lasted for about 6 weeks. The LHP was built, designed, and manufactured at Dynatherm Corporation, Inc. In Hunt Valley, MD according to GSFC specifications. The purpose of the test was to evaluate the performance of a propylene LHP for the Geoscience Laser Altimetry System (GLAS) instrument application.

  11. Retrievals of Thick Cloud Optical Depth from the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) by Calibration of Solar Background Signal (United States)

    Yang, Yuekui; Marshak, Alexander; Chiu, J. Christine; Wiscombe, Warren J.; Palm, Stephen P.; Davis, Anthony B.; Spangenberg, Douglas A.; Nguyen, Louis; Spinhirne, James D.; Minnis, Patrick


    Laser beams emitted from the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS), as well as other space-borne laser instruments, can only penetrate clouds to a limit of a few optical depths. As a result, only optical depths of thinner clouds (thick clouds using solar background light and treating GLAS as a solar radiometer. To do so we first calibrate the reflected solar radiation received by the photon-counting detectors of GLAS' 532 nm channel, which is the primary channel for atmospheric products. The solar background radiation is regarded as a noise to be subtracted in the retrieval process of the lidar products. However, once calibrated, it becomes a signal that can be used in studying the properties of optically thick clouds. In this paper, three calibration methods are presented: (I) calibration with coincident airborne and GLAS observations; (2) calibration with coincident Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) and GLAS observations of deep convective clouds; (3) calibration from the first principles using optical depth of thin water clouds over ocean retrieved by GLAS active remote sensing. Results from the three methods agree well with each other. Cloud optical depth (COD) is retrieved from the calibrated solar background signal using a one-channel retrieval. Comparison with COD retrieved from GOES during GLAS overpasses shows that the average difference between the two retrievals is 24%. As an example, the COD values retrieved from GLAS solar background are illustrated for a marine stratocumulus cloud field that is too thick to be penetrated by the GLAS laser. Based on this study, optical depths for thick clouds will be provided as a supplementary product to the existing operational GLAS cloud products in future GLAS data releases.

  12. A sample design for globally consistent biomass estimation using lidar data from the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Healey Sean P


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Lidar height data collected by the Geosciences Laser Altimeter System (GLAS from 2002 to 2008 has the potential to form the basis of a globally consistent sample-based inventory of forest biomass. GLAS lidar return data were collected globally in spatially discrete full waveform “shots,” which have been shown to be strongly correlated with aboveground forest biomass. Relationships observed at spatially coincident field plots may be used to model biomass at all GLAS shots, and well-established methods of model-based inference may then be used to estimate biomass and variance for specific spatial domains. However, the spatial pattern of GLAS acquisition is neither random across the surface of the earth nor is it identifiable with any particular systematic design. Undefined sample properties therefore hinder the use of GLAS in global forest sampling. Results We propose a method of identifying a subset of the GLAS data which can justifiably be treated as a simple random sample in model-based biomass estimation. The relatively uniform spatial distribution and locally arbitrary positioning of the resulting sample is similar to the design used by the US national forest inventory (NFI. We demonstrated model-based estimation using a sample of GLAS data in the US state of California, where our estimate of biomass (211 Mg/hectare was within the 1.4% standard error of the design-based estimate supplied by the US NFI. The standard error of the GLAS-based estimate was significantly higher than the NFI estimate, although the cost of the GLAS estimate (excluding costs for the satellite itself was almost nothing, compared to at least US$ 10.5 million for the NFI estimate. Conclusions Global application of model-based estimation using GLAS, while demanding significant consolidation of training data, would improve inter-comparability of international biomass estimates by imposing consistent methods and a globally coherent sample frame. The

  13. Laser altimeter of CE-1 payloads system

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    The design and operation of the Laser Altimeter of CE-1 Payloads System are presented in this paper.The paper includes the design of the system and spacecraft-level laser,the description of the emitting-system and receiving system,and the testing of the laser altimeter.The CE-1 laser altimeter is the first Chinese deep-space probe using a laser.It has one beam and operates at 1 Hz,with a nominal accuracy of 5 m.The laser altimeter has operated successfully in lunar orbit since November 28,2007.It has obtained 9120 thousand data values about the lunar altitude.

  14. Receiver Design, Performance Analysis, and Evaluation for Space-Borne Laser Altimeters and Space-to-Space Laser Ranging Systems (United States)

    Davidson, Frederic M.; Sun, Xiaoli; Field, Christopher T.


    This progress report consists of two separate reports. The first one describes our work on the use of variable gain amplifiers to increase the receiver dynamic range of space borne laser altimeters such as NASA's Geoscience Laser Altimeter Systems (GLAS). The requirement of the receiver dynamic range was first calculated. A breadboard variable gain amplifier circuit was made and the performance was fully characterized. The circuit will also be tested in flight on board the Shuttle Laser Altimeter (SLA-02) next year. The second report describes our research on the master clock oscillator frequency calibration for space borne laser altimeter systems using global positioning system (GPS) receivers.

  15. Robust Control for the Mercury Laser Altimeter (United States)

    Rosenberg, Jacob S.


    Mercury Laser Altimeter Science Algorithms is a software system for controlling the laser altimeter aboard the Messenger spacecraft, which is to enter into orbit about Mercury in 2011. The software will control the altimeter by dynamically modifying hardware inputs for gain, threshold, channel-disable flags, range-window start location, and range-window width, by using ranging information provided by the spacecraft and noise counts from instrument hardware. In addition, because of severe bandwidth restrictions, the software also selects returns for downlink.

  16. Simulation of Full-Waveform Laser Altimeter Echowaveform (United States)

    Lv, Y.; Tong, X. H.; Liu, S. J.; Xie, H.; Luan, K. F.; Liu, J.


    Change of globe surface height is an important factor to study human living environment. The Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) on ICESat is the first laser-ranging instrument for continuous global observations of the Earth. In order to have a comprehensive understanding of full-waveform laser altimeter, this study simulated the operating mode of ICESat and modeled different terrains' (platform terrain, slope terrain, and artificial terrain) echo waveforms based on the radar equation. By changing the characteristics of the system and the targets, numerical echo waveforms can be achieved. Hereafter, we mainly discussed the factors affecting the amplitude and size (width) of the echoes. The experimental results implied that the slope of the terrain, backscattering coefficient and reflectivity, target height, target position in the footprint and area reacted with the pulse all can affect the energy distribution of the echo waveform and the receiving time. Finally, Gaussian decomposition is utilized to decompose the echo waveform. From the experiment, it can be noted that the factors which can affect the echo waveform and by this way we can know more about large footprint full-waveform satellite laser altimeter.

  17. Laser Altimeter for Flight Simulator (United States)

    Webster, L. D.


    Height of flight-simulator probe above model of terrain measured by automatic laser triangulation system. Airplane simulated by probe that moves over model of terrain. Altitude of airplane scaled from height of probe above model. Height measured by triangulation of laser beam aimed at intersection of model surface with plumb line of probe.

  18. Diode-pumped laser altimeter (United States)

    Welford, D.; Isyanova, Y.


    TEM(sub 00)-mode output energies up to 22.5 mJ with 23 percent slope efficiencies were generated at 1.064 microns in a diode-laser pumped Nd:YAG laser using a transverse-pumping geometry. 1.32-micron performance was equally impressive at 10.2 mJ output energy with 15 percent slope efficiency. The same pumping geometry was successfully carried forward to several complex Q-switched laser resonator designs with no noticeable degradation of beam quality. Output beam profiles were consistently shown to have greater than 90 percent correlation with the ideal TEM(sub 00)-order Gaussian profile. A comparison study on pulse-reflection-mode (PRM), pulse-transmission-mode (PTM), and passive Q-switching techniques was undertaken. The PRM Q-switched laser generated 8.3 mJ pulses with durations as short as 10 ns. The PTM Q-switch laser generated 5 mJ pulses with durations as short as 5 ns. The passively Q-switched laser generated 5 mJ pulses with durations as short as 2.4 ns. Frequency doubling of both 1.064 microns and 1.32 microns with conversion efficiencies of 56 percent in lithium triborate and 10 percent in rubidium titanyl arsenate, respectively, was shown. Sum-frequency generation of the 1.064 microns and 1.32 microns radiations was demonstrated in KTP to generate 1.1 mJ of 0.589 micron output with 11.5 percent conversion efficiency.

  19. Waveform model of a laser altimeter for an elliptical Gaussian beam. (United States)

    Yue, Ma; Mingwei, Wang; Guoyuan, Li; Xiushan, Lu; Fanlin, Yang


    The current waveform model of a laser altimeter is based on the Gaussian laser beam of the fundamental mode, whose cross section is a circular spot, whereas some of the cross sections of Geoscience Laser Altimeter System lasers are closer to elliptical spots. Based on the expression of the elliptical Gaussian beam and the waveform theory of laser altimeters, the primary parameters of an echo waveform were derived. In order to examine the deduced expressions, a laser altimetry waveform simulator and waveform processing software were programmed and improved under the circumstance of an elliptical Gaussian beam. The result shows that all the biases between the theoretical and simulated waveforms were less than 0.5%, and the derived model of an elliptical spot is universal and can also be used for the conventional circular spot. The shape of the waveforms is influenced by the ellipticity of the laser spot, the target slope, and the "azimuth angle" between the major axis and the slope direction. This article provides the waveform theoretical basis of a laser altimeter under an elliptical Gaussian beam.

  20. ZY3-02 Laser Altimeter Footprint Geolocation Prediction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junfeng Xie


    Full Text Available Successfully launched on 30 May 2016, ZY3-02 is the first Chinese surveying and mapping satellite equipped with a lightweight laser altimeter. Calibration is necessary before the laser altimeter becomes operational. Laser footprint location prediction is the first step in calibration that is based on ground infrared detectors, and it is difficult because the sample frequency of the ZY3-02 laser altimeter is 2 Hz, and the distance between two adjacent laser footprints is about 3.5 km. In this paper, we build an on-orbit rigorous geometric prediction model referenced to the rigorous geometric model of optical remote sensing satellites. The model includes three kinds of data that must be predicted: pointing angle, orbit parameters, and attitude angles. The proposed method is verified by a ZY3-02 laser altimeter on-orbit geometric calibration test. Five laser footprint prediction experiments are conducted based on the model, and the laser footprint prediction accuracy is better than 150 m on the ground. The effectiveness and accuracy of the on-orbit rigorous geometric prediction model are confirmed by the test results. The geolocation is predicted precisely by the proposed method, and this will give a reference to the geolocation prediction of future land laser detectors in other laser altimeter calibration test.

  1. 20,000 Photons Under the Snow: Subsurface Scattering of Visible Laser Light and the Implications for Laser Altimeters (United States)

    Greeley, A.; Kurtz, N. T.; Shappirio, M.; Neumann, T.; Cook, W. B.; Markus, T.


    Existing visible light laser altimeters such as ATM (Airborne Topographical Mapper) with NASA's Operation IceBridge and NASA's MABEL (Multiple Altimeter Beam Experimental Lidar; a simulator for NASA's ICESat-2 mission) are providing scientists with a view of Earth's ice sheets, glaciers, and sea ice with unprecedented detail. Measuring how these surfaces evolve in the face of a rapidly changing climate requires the utmost attention to detail in the design and calibration of these instruments, as well as understanding the changing optical properties of these surfaces. As single photon counting lidars, MABEL and NASA's ATLAS (Advanced Topographic Laser Altimeter System) on the upcoming ICESat-2 mission provide fundamentally different information compared with waveform lidars such as ATM, or GLAS (Geoscience Laser Altimeter System) on NASA's previous ICESat-1 mission. By recording the travel times of individual photons, more detailed information about the surface, and potentially the subsurface, are available and must be considered in elevation retrievals from the observed photon cloud. Here, we investigate possible sources of uncertainty associated with monochromatic visible light scattering in subsurface snow, which may affect the precision and accuracy of elevation estimates. We also explore the capacity to estimate snow grain size in near surface snow using experimental visible light laser data obtained in laboratory experiments.

  2. Shuttle Laser Altimeter (SLA): A pathfinder for space-based laser altimetry and lidar (United States)

    Bufton, Jack; Blair, Bryan; Cavanaugh, John; Garvin, James


    The Shuttle Laser Altimeter (SLA) is a Hitchhiker experiment now being integrated for first flight on STS-72 in November 1995. Four Shuttle flights of the SLA are planned at a rate of about a flight every 18 months. They are aimed at the transition of the Goddard Space Flight Center airborne laser altimeter and lidar technology to low Earth orbit as a pathfinder for operational space-based laser remote sensing devices. Future alser altimeter sensors such as the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS), an Earth Observing System facility instrument, and the Multi-Beam Laser Altimeter (MBLA), the land and vegetation laser altimeter for the NASA TOPSAT (Topography Satellite) Mission, will utilize systems and approaches being tested with SLA. The SLA Instrument measures the distance from the Space Shuttle to the Earth's surface by timing the two-way propagation of short (approximately 10 na noseconds) laser pulses. laser pulses at 1064 nm wavelength are generated in a laser transmitter and are detected by a telescope equipped with a silicon avalanche photodiode detector. The SLA data system makes the pulse time interval measurement to a precision of about 10 nsec and also records the temporal shape of the laser echo from the Earth's surface for interpretation of surface height distribution within the 100 m diam. sensor footprint. For example, tree height can be determined by measuring the characteristic double-pulse signature that results from a separation in time of laser backscatter from tree canopies and the underlying ground. This is accomplished with a pulse waveform digitizer that samples the detector output with an adjustable resolution of 2 nanoseconds or wider intervals in a 100 sample window centered on the return pulse echo. The digitizer makes the SLA into a high resolution surface lidar sensor. It can also be used for cloud and atmospheric aerosol lidar measurements by lengthening the sampling window and degrading the waveform resolution. Detailed test

  3. Single photon laser altimeter data processing, analysis and experimental validation (United States)

    Vacek, Michael; Peca, Marek; Michalek, Vojtech; Prochazka, Ivan


    Spaceborne laser altimeters are common instruments on-board the rendezvous spacecraft. This manuscript deals with the altimeters using a single photon approach, which belongs to the family of time-of-flight range measurements. Moreover, the single photon receiver part of the altimeter may be utilized as an Earth-to-spacecraft link enabling one-way ranging, time transfer and data transfer. The single photon altimeters evaluate actual altitude through the repetitive detections of single photons of the reflected laser pulses. We propose the single photon altimeter signal processing and data mining algorithm based on the Poisson statistic filter (histogram method) and the modified Kalman filter, providing all common altimetry products (altitude, slope, background photon flux and albedo). The Kalman filter is extended for the background noise filtering, the varying slope adaptation and the non-causal extension for an abrupt slope change. Moreover, the algorithm partially removes the major drawback of a single photon altitude reading, namely that the photon detection measurement statistics must be gathered. The developed algorithm deduces the actual altitude on the basis of a single photon detection; thus, being optimal in the sense that each detected signal photon carrying altitude information is tracked and no altitude information is lost. The algorithm was tested on the simulated datasets and partially cross-probed with the experimental data collected using the developed single photon altimeter breadboard based on the microchip laser with the pulse energy on the order of microjoule and the repetition rate of several kilohertz. We demonstrated that such an altimeter configuration may be utilized for landing or hovering a small body (asteroid, comet).

  4. Receiver characteristics of laser altimeters with avalanche photodiodes (United States)

    Sun, Xiaoli; Davidson, Frederic M.; Boutsikaris, Leo; Abshire, James B.


    The receiver characteristics of a laser altimeter system containing an avalanche photodiode photodetector are analyzed using the Gaussian approximation, the saddle-point approximation, and a nearly exact analysis. The last two methods are shown to yield very similar results except when the background noise is extremely low and the probability of false alarm is high. However, the Gaussian approximation method is shown to cause significant errors even under relatively high levels of background noise and received signal energy.

  5. Lessons Learned from the Advanced Topographic Laser Altimeter System (United States)

    Garrison, Matt; Patel, Deepak; Bradshaw, Heather; Robinson, Frank; Neuberger, Dave


    The ICESat-2 Advanced Topographic Laser Altimeter System (ATLAS) instrument is an upcoming Earth Science mission focusing on the effects of climate change. The flight instrument passed all environmental testing at GSFC (Goddard Space Flight Center) and is now ready to be shipped to the spacecraft vendor for integration and testing. This presentation walks through the lessons learned from design, hardware, analysis and testing perspective. ATLAS lessons learned include general thermal design, analysis, hardware, and testing issues as well as lessons specific to laser systems, two-phase thermal control, and optical assemblies with precision alignment requirements.

  6. The BepiColombo Laser Altimeter BELA: Instrument Description (United States)

    Seiferlin, K.; Thomas, N.; Spohn, T.; Oberst, J.; Michaelis, H.; Gunderson, K.; Whitby, J. A.


    The BepiColombo Laser Altimeter (BELA) is among the instruments that have been selected for flight aboard the MPO of ESA's BepiColombo mission to Mercury. A consortium led by Physikalisches Institut Universitaet Bern, Switzerland) and Institut für Planetenforschung (DLR, Berlin, Germany) will develop the first European laser altimeter for planetary exploration. The instrument follows the classical principle of direct detection of the returned laser light using a 200 mm telescope. The receiver telescope is made of electroformed nickel in order to save mass. The transmitter is based on a longitudinally pumped ND:YAG laser with 50 mJ pulses and about 5 ns pulse duration, operating at 10 Hz. The range finding and pulse detection uses digital filtering of return pulse shapes. Operation is possible on the dayside as well as on the night side of Mercury, but limited to about 1200 km altitude. We will present the instrument concept as well as the set-up of new test, verification and calibration facilities that are required for this type of instrument.

  7. Laser altimeter observations from MESSENGER's first Mercury flyby. (United States)

    Zuber, Maria T; Smith, David E; Solomon, Sean C; Phillips, Roger J; Peale, Stanton J; Head, James W; Hauck, Steven A; McNutt, Ralph L; Oberst, Jürgen; Neumann, Gregory A; Lemoine, Frank G; Sun, Xiaoli; Barnouin-Jha, Olivier; Harmon, John K


    A 3200-kilometers-long profile of Mercury by the Mercury Laser Altimeter on the MESSENGER spacecraft spans approximately 20% of the near-equatorial region of the planet. Topography along the profile is characterized by a 5.2-kilometer dynamic range and 930-meter root-mean-square roughness. At long wavelengths, topography slopes eastward by 0.02 degrees , implying a variation of equatorial shape that is at least partially compensated. Sampled craters on Mercury are shallower than their counterparts on the Moon, at least in part the result of Mercury's higher gravity. Crater floors vary in roughness and slope, implying complex modification over a range of length scales.

  8. The OSIRIS-REx Laser Altimeter (OLA) Investigation and Instrument (United States)

    Daly, M. G.; Barnouin, O. S.; Dickinson, C.; Seabrook, J.; Johnson, C. L.; Cunningham, G.; Haltigin, T.; Gaudreau, D.; Brunet, C.; Aslam, I.; Taylor, A.; Bierhaus, E. B.; Boynton, W.; Nolan, M.; Lauretta, D. S.


    The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) has contributed to the Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft the OSIRIS-REx Laser Altimeter (OLA). The OSIRIS-REx mission will sample asteroid 101955 Bennu, the first B-type asteroid to be visited by a spacecraft. Bennu is thought to be primitive, carbonaceous, and spectrally most closely related to CI and/or CM meteorites. As a scanning laser altimeter, the OLA instrument will measure the range between the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft and the surface of Bennu to produce digital terrain maps of unprecedented spatial scales for a planetary mission. The digital terrain maps produced will measure ˜7 cm per pixel globally, and ˜3 cm per pixel at specific sample sites. In addition, OLA data will be used to constrain and refine the spacecraft trajectories. Global maps and highly accurate spacecraft trajectory estimates are critical to infer the internal structure of the asteroid. The global and regional maps also are key to gain new insights into the surface processes acting across Bennu, which inform the selection of the OSIRIS-REx sample site. These, in turn, are essential for understanding the provenance of the regolith sample collected by the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft. The OLA data also are important for quantifying any hazards near the selected OSIRIS-REx sample site and for evaluating the range of tilts at the sampling site for comparison against the capabilities of the sample acquisition device.

  9. Crossover Analysis of CHANG'E-1 Laser Altimeter Data (United States)

    Hu, W.; Yue, Z.; Di, K.


    This paper presents a preliminary result of crossover analysis and adjustment of Chang'E-1(CE-1) Laser Altimeter (LAM) data of the Moon for global and regional mapping applications. During the operation of Chang'E-1 from November 28, 2007 to December 4, 2008, the laser altimeter acquired 1400 orbital profiles with about 9.12 million altimetric points. In our experiment, we derived more than 1.38 million crossovers from 1395 ground tracks covering the entire lunar surface after eliminating outliers of orbits and altimetric points. A method of least-squares crossover adjustment with a series of basis functions of time (trigonometric functions and polynomials) is developed to reconcile the LAM data by minimizing the crossover residuals globally. The normal equations are very large but sparse; therefore they are stored and solved using sparse matrix technique. In a test area (0°N~60°N, 50°W~0°W), the crossover residuals are reduced from 62.1m to 32.8m, and the quality of the DEM generated from the adjusted LAM data is improved accordingly. We will optimize the method for the global adjustment to generate a high precision consistent global DEM, which can be used as absolute control for lunar mapping with orbital images.

  10. Development of the Laser Altimeter (LIDAR) for Hayabusa2 (United States)

    Mizuno, T.; Kase, T.; Shiina, T.; Mita, M.; Namiki, N.; Senshu, H.; Yamada, R.; Noda, H.; Kunimori, H.; Hirata, N.; Terui, F.; Mimasu, Y.


    Hayabusa2 was launched on 3 December 2014 on an H-IIA launch vehicle from the Tanegashima Space Center, and is, at the time of writing, cruising toward asteroid 162137 Ryugu ( 1999JU3). After reaching the asteroid, it will stay for about 1.5 years to observe the asteroid and collect surface material samples. The light detection and ranging (LIDAR) laser altimeter on Hayabusa2 has a wide dynamic range, from 25 km to 30 m, because the LIDAR is used as a navigation sensor for rendezvous, approach, and touchdown procedures. Since it was designed for use in planetary explorers, its weight is a low 3.5 kg. The LIDAR can serve not only as a navigation sensor, but also as observation equipment for estimating the asteroid's topography, gravity and surface reflectivity (albedo). Since Hayabusa2 had a development schedule of just three years from the start of the project to launch, minimizing development time was a particular concern. A key to shortening the development period of Hayabusa2's LIDAR system was heritage technology from Hayabusa's LIDAR and the SELENE lunar explorer's LALT laser altimeter. Given that the main role of Hayabusa2's LIDAR is to serve as a navigation sensor, we discuss its development from an engineering viewpoint. However, detailed information about instrument development and test results is also important for scientific analysis of LIDAR data and for future laser altimetry in lunar and planetary exploration. Here we describe lessons learned from the Hayabusa LIDAR, as well as Hayabusa2's hardware, new technologies and system designs based on it, and flight model evaluation results. The monolithic laser used in the laser module is a characteristic technology of this LIDAR. It was developed to solve issues with low-temperature storage that were problematic when developing the LIDAR system for the first Hayabusa mission. The new module not only solves such problems but also improves reliability and miniaturization by reducing the number of parts.

  11. Test Port for Fiber-Optic-Coupled Laser Altimeter (United States)

    Ramos Izquierdo, Luis; Scott, V. Stanley; Rinis, Haris; Cavanaugh, John


    A test port designed as part of a fiber optic coupled laser altimeter receiver optical system allows for the back-illumination of the optical system for alignment verification, as well as illumination of the detector(s) for testing the receiver electronics and signal-processing algorithms. Measuring the optical alignment of a laser altimeter instrument is difficult after the instrument is fully assembled. The addition of a test port in the receiver aft-optics allows for the back-illumination of the receiver system such that its focal setting and boresight alignment can be easily verified. For a multiple-detector receiver system, the addition of the aft-optics test port offers the added advantage of being able to simultaneously test all the detectors with different signals that simulate the expected operational conditions. On a laser altimeter instrument (see figure), the aft-optics couple the light from the receiver telescope to the receiver detector(s). Incorporating a beam splitter in the aft-optics design allows for the addition of a test port to back-illuminate the receiver telescope and/or detectors. The aft-optics layout resembles a T with the detector on one leg, the receiver telescope input port on the second leg, and the test port on the third leg. The use of a custom beam splitter with 99-percent reflection, 1-percent transmission, and a mirrored roof can send the test port light to the receiver telescope leg as well as the detector leg, without unduly sacrificing the signal from the receiver telescope to the detector. The ability to test the receiver system alignment, as well as multiple detectors with different signals without the need to disassemble the instrument or connect and reconnect components, is a great advantage to the aft-optics test port. Another benefit is that the receiver telescope aperture is fully back-illuminated by the test port so the receiver telescope focal setting vs. pressure and or temperature can be accurately measured (as

  12. The Rigorous Geometric Model of Satellite Laser Altimeter and Preliminarily Accuracy Validation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    TANG Xinming


    Full Text Available It has been paid attention to improving the elevation accuracy of satellite stereo images aided by laser altimeter. The GF-7 satellite scheduled to launch in 2018 will be equipped with optical stereo cameras and a laser altimeter. ICESat (Ice, Cloud, and land Elevation Satellite with GLAS(Geo-science Laser Altimeter System is the first and still only laser altimeter satellite for earth observation until now. In this paper, the comprehensively analysis about the rigorous geometric model and accuracy analysis of laser altimeter is presented. The error induced by laser pointing aberration and mounting is proposed, and the data processing workflow of ICESat/GLAS from level 0 to level 2 is introduced. What's more, the geo-location accuracy between this paper and GLAS product is compared and the model is validated by the result that the accuracy based on the model is about 3 cm and 11 cm in the horizontal and vertical direction, respectively. The laser altimeter data loaded on the ZY3-02 satellite has been processed and validated preliminarily. The conclusion of this paper is valuable and can be viewed as reference for the subsequent domestic laser altimeter satellites.

  13. Vertical Accuracy Assessment of ZY-3 Digital Surface Model Using Icesat/glas Laser Altimeter Data (United States)

    Li, G.; Tang, X.; Yuan, X.; Zhou, P.; Hu, F.


    The Ziyuan-3 (ZY-3) satellite, as the first civilian high resolution surveying and mapping satellite in China, has a very important role in national 1 : 50,000 stereo mapping project. High accuracy digital surface Model (DSMs) can be generated from the three line-array images of ZY-3, and ZY-3 DSMs of China can be produced without using any ground control points (GCPs) by selecting SRTM (Shuttle Radar Topography Mission) and ICESat/GLAS (Ice, Cloud, and land Elevation Satellite, Geo-science Laser Altimeter System) as the datum reference in the Satellite Surveying and Mapping Application Center, which is the key institute that manages and distributes ZY-3 products. To conduct the vertical accuracy evaluation of ZY-3 DSMs of China, three representative regions were chosen and the results were compared to ICESat/GLAS data. The experimental results demonstrated that the root mean square error (RMSE) elevation accuracy of the ZY-3 DSMs was better than 5.0 m, and it even reached to less than 2.5 m in the second region of eastern China. While this work presents preliminary results, it is an important reference for expanding the application of ZY-3 satellite imagery to widespread regions. And the satellite laser altimetry data can be used as referenced data for wide-area DSM evaluation.

  14. In-Flight Performance of the Mercury Laser Altimeter Laser Transmitter (United States)

    Yu, Anthony W.; Sun, Xiaoli; Li, Steven X.; Cavanaugh, John F.; Neumann, Gregory A.


    The Mercury Laser Altimeter (MLA) is one of the payload instruments on the MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) spacecraft, which was launched on August 3, 2004. MLA maps Mercury's shape and topographic landforms and other surface characteristics using a diode-pumped solid-state laser transmitter and a silicon avalanche photodiode receiver that measures the round-trip time of individual laser pulses. The laser transmitter has been operating nominally during planetary flyby measurements and in orbit about Mercury since March 2011. In this paper, we review the MLA laser transmitter telemetry data and evaluate the performance of solid-state lasers under extended operation in a space environment.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Li


    Full Text Available ZY-3 is the first civilian high resolution stereo mapping satellite, which has been launched on 9th, Jan, 2012. The aim of ZY-3 satellite is to obtain high resolution stereo images and support the 1:50000 scale national surveying and mapping. Although ZY-3 has very high accuracy for direct geo-locations without GCPs (Ground Control Points, use of some GCPs is still indispensible for high precise stereo mapping. The GLAS (Geo-science Laser Altimetry System loaded on the ICESat (Ice Cloud and land Elevation Satellite, which is the first laser altimetry satellite for earth observation. GLAS has played an important role in the monitoring of polar ice sheets, the measuring of land topography and vegetation canopy heights after launched in 2003. Although GLAS has ended in 2009, the derived elevation dataset still can be used after selection by some criteria. In this paper, the ICESat/GLAS laser altimeter data is used as height reference data to improve the ZY-3 height accuracy. A selection method is proposed to obtain high precision GLAS elevation data. Two strategies to improve the ZY-3 height accuracy are introduced. One is the conventional bundle adjustment based on RFM and bias-compensated model, in which the GLAS footprint data is viewed as height control. The second is to correct the DSM (Digital Surface Model straightly by simple block adjustment, and the DSM is derived from the ZY-3 stereo imaging after freedom adjustment and dense image matching. The experimental result demonstrates that the height accuracy of ZY-3 without other GCPs can be improved to 3.0 meter after adding GLAS elevation data. What’s more, the comparison of the accuracy and efficiency between the two strategies is implemented for application.

  16. Improve the ZY-3 Height Accuracy Using Icesat/glas Laser Altimeter Data (United States)

    Li, Guoyuan; Tang, Xinming; Gao, Xiaoming; Zhang, Chongyang; Li, Tao


    ZY-3 is the first civilian high resolution stereo mapping satellite, which has been launched on 9th, Jan, 2012. The aim of ZY-3 satellite is to obtain high resolution stereo images and support the 1:50000 scale national surveying and mapping. Although ZY-3 has very high accuracy for direct geo-locations without GCPs (Ground Control Points), use of some GCPs is still indispensible for high precise stereo mapping. The GLAS (Geo-science Laser Altimetry System) loaded on the ICESat (Ice Cloud and land Elevation Satellite), which is the first laser altimetry satellite for earth observation. GLAS has played an important role in the monitoring of polar ice sheets, the measuring of land topography and vegetation canopy heights after launched in 2003. Although GLAS has ended in 2009, the derived elevation dataset still can be used after selection by some criteria. In this paper, the ICESat/GLAS laser altimeter data is used as height reference data to improve the ZY-3 height accuracy. A selection method is proposed to obtain high precision GLAS elevation data. Two strategies to improve the ZY-3 height accuracy are introduced. One is the conventional bundle adjustment based on RFM and bias-compensated model, in which the GLAS footprint data is viewed as height control. The second is to correct the DSM (Digital Surface Model) straightly by simple block adjustment, and the DSM is derived from the ZY-3 stereo imaging after freedom adjustment and dense image matching. The experimental result demonstrates that the height accuracy of ZY-3 without other GCPs can be improved to 3.0 meter after adding GLAS elevation data. What's more, the comparison of the accuracy and efficiency between the two strategies is implemented for application.

  17. On retrieving sea ice freeboard from ICESat laser altimeter (United States)

    Khvorostovsky, Kirill; Rampal, Pierre


    Sea ice freeboard derived from satellite altimetry is the basis for the estimation of sea ice thickness using the assumption of hydrostatic equilibrium. High accuracy of altimeter measurements and freeboard retrieval procedure are, therefore, required. As of today, two approaches for estimating the freeboard using laser altimeter measurements from Ice, Cloud, and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat), referred to as tie points (TP) and lowest-level elevation (LLE) methods, have been developed and applied in different studies. We reproduced these methods for the ICESat observation periods (2003-2008) in order to assess and analyse the sources of differences found in the retrieved freeboard and corresponding thickness estimates of the Arctic sea ice as produced by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). Three main factors are found to affect the freeboard differences when applying these methods: (a) the approach used for calculation of the local sea surface references in leads (TP or LLE methods), (b) the along-track averaging scales used for this calculation, and (c) the corrections for lead width relative to the ICESat footprint and for snow depth accumulated in refrozen leads. The LLE method with 100 km averaging scale, as used to produce the GSFC data set, and the LLE method with a shorter averaging scale of 25 km both give larger freeboard estimates comparing to those derived by applying the TP method with 25 km averaging scale as used for the JPL product. Two factors, (a) and (b), contribute to the freeboard differences in approximately equal proportions, and their combined effect is, on average, about 6-7 cm. The effect of using different methods varies spatially: the LLE method tends to give lower freeboards (by up to 15 cm) over the thick multiyear ice and higher freeboards (by up to 10 cm) over first-year ice and the thin part of multiyear ice; the higher freeboards dominate. We show that the freeboard underestimation

  18. Space-qualified laser system for the BepiColombo Laser Altimeter. (United States)

    Kallenbach, Reinald; Murphy, Eamonn; Gramkow, Bodo; Rech, Markus; Weidlich, Kai; Leikert, Thomas; Henkelmann, Reiner; Trefzger, Boris; Metz, Bodo; Michaelis, Harald; Lingenauber, Kay; DelTogno, Simone; Behnke, Thomas; Thomas, Nicolas; Piazza, Daniele; Seiferlin, Karsten


    The space-qualified design of a miniaturized laser for pulsed operation at a wavelength of 1064 nm and at repetition rates up to 10 Hz is presented. This laser consists of a pair of diode-laser pumped, actively q-switched Nd:YAG rod oscillators hermetically sealed and encapsulated in an environment of dry synthetic air. The system delivers at least 300 million laser pulses with 50 mJ energy and 5 ns pulse width (FWHM). It will be launched in 2017 aboard European Space Agency's Mercury Planetary Orbiter as part of the BepiColombo Laser Altimeter, which, after a 6-years cruise, will start recording topographic data from orbital altitudes between 400 and 1500 km above Mercury's surface.

  19. Baseline Design and Performance Analysis of Laser Altimeter for Korean Lunar Orbiter (United States)

    Lim, Hyung-Chul; Neumann, Gregory A.; Choi, Myeong-Hwan; Yu, Sung-Yeol; Bang, Seong-Cheol; Ka, Neung-Hyun; Park, Jong-Uk; Choi, Man-Soo; Park, Eunseo


    Korea’s lunar exploration project includes the launching of an orbiter, a lander (including a rover), and an experimental orbiter (referred to as a lunar pathfinder). Laser altimeters have played an important scientific role in lunar, planetary, and asteroid exploration missions since their first use in 1971 onboard the Apollo 15 mission to the Moon. In this study, a laser altimeter was proposed as a scientific instrument for the Korean lunar orbiter, which will be launched by 2020, to study the global topography of the surface of the Moon and its gravitational field and to support other payloads such as a terrain mapping camera or spectral imager. This study presents the baseline design and performance model for the proposed laser altimeter. Additionally, the study discusses the expected performance based on numerical simulation results. The simulation results indicate that the design of system parameters satisfies performance requirements with respect to detection probability and range error even under unfavorable conditions.

  20. The OSIRIS-REx laser altimeter (OLA): Development progress (United States)

    Daly, M.; Barnouin, O.; Johnson, C.; Bierhaus, E.; Seabrook, J.; Dickinson, C.; Haltigin, T.; Gaudreau, D.; Brunet, C.; Cunningham, G.; Lauretta, D.; Boynton, W.; Beshore, E.


    Introduction: The NASA New Frontiers Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) mission will be the first to sample the B-type asteroid (101955) Bennu [1]. This asteroid is thought to be primitive and carbonaceous, and is probably closely related to CI and/or CM meteorites [2]. The OSIRIS-REx mission hopes to better understand both the physical and geochemical origin and evolution of carbonaceous asteroids through its investigation of Bennu. The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft will launch in September 2016, and arrive at Bennu two years later. The Canadian Space Agency is contributing a scanning lidar system known as the OSIRIS-REx Laser Altimeter (OLA), to the OSIRIS-REx Mission. The OLA instrument is part of suite of onboard instruments [3] including cameras (OCAMS) [4], a visible and near- infrared spectrometer (OVIRS) [5], a thermal emission spectrometer (OTES), and an X-ray imaging spectrometer (REXIS) [6]. OLA Objectives: The OLA instrument has a suite of scientific and mission operations purposes. At a global scale, it will update the shape and mass of Bennu to provide insights on the geological origin and evolution of Bennu, by, for example, further refining constraints on its bulk density. With a carefully undertaken geodesy campaign, OLA-based precision ranges, constraints from radio science (2-way tracking) data and stereo OCAMS images, it will yield broad-scale, quantitative constraints on any internal heterogeneity of Bennu and hence provide further clues to Bennu's origin and subsequent collisional evolution. OLA-derived global asteroid maps of slopes, elevation relative to the asteroid geoid, and vertical roughness will provide quantitative insights on how local-regional surfaces on Bennu evolved subsequent to the formation of the asteroid. In addition, OLA data and derived products support the assessment of the safety and sampleability of potential sample sites. At the sample-site scale, the OLA instrument

  1. A digital elevation model of the Greenland ice sheet and validation with airborne laser altimeter data (United States)

    Bamber, Jonathan L.; Ekholm, Simon; Krabill, William B.


    A 2.5 km resolution digital elevation model (DEM) of the Greenland ice sheet was produced from the 336 days of the geodetic phase of ERS-1. During this period the altimeter was operating in ice-mode over land surfaces providing improved tracking around the margins of the ice sheet. Combined with the high density of tracks during the geodetic phase, a unique data set was available for deriving a DEM of the whole ice sheet. The errors present in the altimeter data were investigated via a comparison with airborne laser altimeter data obtained for the southern half of Greenland. Comparison with coincident satellite data showed a correlation with surface slope. An explanation for the behavior of the bias as a function of surface slope is given in terms of the pattern of surface roughness on the ice sheet.

  2. Improving maps of ice-sheet surface elevation change using combined laser altimeter and stereoscopic elevation model data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fredenslund Levinsen, Joanna; Howat, I. M.; Tscherning, C. C.


    laser altimeters have relatively low errors but are spatially limited to the ground tracks, while DEMs have larger errors but provide spatially continuous surfaces. The principle of our method is to fit the DEM surface to the altimeter point clouds in time and space to minimize the DEM errors and use......We combine the complementary characteristics of laser altimeter data and stereoscopic digital elevation models (DEMs) to construct high-resolution (_100 m) maps of surface elevations and elevation changes over rapidly changing outlet glaciers in Greenland. Measurements from spaceborne and airborne...... that surface to extrapolate elevations away from altimeter flight lines. This reduces the DEM registration errors and fills the gap between the altimeter paths. We use data from ICESat and ATM as well as SPOT 5 DEMs from 2007 and 2008 and apply them to the outlet glaciers Jakobshavn Isbræ (JI...

  3. A BP neural network model for sea state recognition using laser altimeter (United States)

    Shi, Chun-bo; Jia, Xiao-dong; Li, Sheng; Wang, Zhen


    A BP neural network method for the recognition of sea state in laser altimeter is presented in this paper. Sea wave is the typical stochastic disturbance factor of laser altimeter effecting on low-altitude defense penetration of the intelligent antiship missiles, the recognition of sea state is studied in order to satisfy the practical needs of flying over the ocean. The BP neural network fed with the feature vector of laser range-measurement presents the analysis of features and outputs the estimation result of sea state. The two most distinguishing features are the mean and the variance of the sea echo, which are extracted from the distance characteristics of sea echo using general theory of statistics. The use of a feedforward network trained with the back-propagation algorithm is also investigated. The BP neural network is trained using sample data set to the neural network, and then the BP neural network trained is tested to recognize the sea state waiting for the classification. The network output shows the recognition accuracy of the model can up to 88%, and the results of tests show that the BP neural network model for the recognition of sea state is feasible and effective.

  4. Polarimetric, Two-Color, Photon-Counting Laser Altimeter Measurements of Forest Canopy Structure (United States)

    Harding, David J.; Dabney, Philip W.; Valett, Susan


    Laser altimeter measurements of forest stands with distinct structures and compositions have been acquired at 532 nm (green) and 1064 nm (near-infrared) wavelengths and parallel and perpendicular polarization states using the Slope Imaging Multi-polarization Photon Counting Lidar (SIMPL). The micropulse, single photon ranging measurement approach employed by SIMPL provides canopy structure measurements with high vertical and spatial resolution. Using a height distribution analysis method adapted from conventional, 1064 nm, full-waveform lidar remote sensing, the sensitivity of two parameters commonly used for above-ground biomass estimation are compared as a function of wavelength. The results for the height of median energy (HOME) and canopy cover are for the most part very similar, indicating biomass estimations using lidars operating at green and near-infrared wavelengths will yield comparable estimates. The expected detection of increasing depolarization with depth into the canopies due to volume multiple-scattering was not observed, possibly due to the small laser footprint and the small detector field of view used in the SIMPL instrument. The results of this work provide pathfinder information for NASA's ICESat-2 mission that will employ a 532 nm, micropulse, photon counting laser altimeter.

  5. The accuracy of satellite radar altimeter data over the Greenland ice sheet determined from airborne laser data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bamber, J.L.; Ekholm, Simon; Krabill, W.


    The 336 days of the geodetic phase of ERS-1 provides dense coverage, by satellite radar altimetry, of the whole of the Greenland ice sheet. These data have been used to produce a digital elevation model of the ice sheet. The errors present in the altimeter data were investigated via a comparison...... with airborne laser altimeter data an absolute accuracy typically in the range 2-10 cm +/- 10 cm. Comparison of differences between the radar and laser derived elevations, showed a correlation with surface slope. The difference between the two data sets ranged from 84 cm +/- 79 cm for slopes below 0.1 degrees...

  6. The BepiColombo Laser Altimeter (BeLA) power converter module (PCM): Concept and characterisation (United States)

    Rodrigo, J.; Gasquet, E.; Castro, J.-M.; Herranz, M.; Lara, L.-M.; Muñoz, M.; Simon, A.; Behnke, T.; Thomas, N.


    This paper presents the principal considerations when designing DC-DC converters for space instruments, in particular for the power converter module as part of the first European space laser altimeter: "BepiColombo Laser Altimeter" on board the European Space Agency-Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) mission BepiColombo. The main factors which determine the design of the DC-DC modules in space applications are printed circuit board occupation, mass, DC-DC converter efficiency, and environmental-survivability constraints. Topics included in the appropriated DC-DC converter design flow are hereby described. The topology and technology for the primary and secondary stages, input filters, transformer design, and peripheral components are discussed. Component selection and design trade-offs are described. Grounding, load and line regulation, and secondary protection circuitry (under-voltage, over-voltage, and over-current) are then introduced. Lastly, test results and characterization of the final flight design are also presented. Testing of the inrush current, the regulated output start-up, and the switching function of the power supply indicate that these performances are fully compliant with the requirements.

  7. Lunar topographic model CLTM-s01 from Chang'E-1 laser altimeter

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    PING JinSong; HUANG Qian; YAN JianGuo; CAO JianFeng; TANG GeShi; SHU Rong


    More than 3 million range measurements from the Chang'E-1 Laser Altimeter have been used to pro-duce a global topographic model of the Moon with improved accuracy. Our topographic model, a 360th degree and order spherical harmonic expansion of the lunar radii, is designated as Chang'E-1 Lunar Topography Model s01 (CLTM-s01). This topographic field, referenced to a mean radius of 1738 km, has an absolute vertical accuracy of approximately 31 m and a spatial resolution of 0.25° (~7.5 km). This new lunar topographic model has greatly improved previous models in spatial coverage, accuracy and spatial resolution, and also shows the polar regions with the altimeter results for the first time. From CLTM-s01, the mean, equatorial, and polar radii of the Moon are 1737103, 1737646, and 1735843 m, re-spectively. In the lunar-fixed coordinate system, this model shows a COM/COF offset to be (-1.777, -0.730, 0.237) km along the x, y, and z directions, respectively. All the basic lunar shape parameters derived from CLTM-s01 are in agreement with the results of Clementine GLTM2, but CLTM-s01 offers higher accuracy and reliability due to its better global samplings.

  8. Lunar topographic model CLTM-s01 from Chang’E-1 laser altimeter

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    More than 3 million range measurements from the Chang’E-1 Laser Altimeter have been used to produce a global topographic model of the Moon with improved accuracy. Our topographic model, a 360th degree and order spherical harmonic expansion of the lunar radii, is designated as Chang’E-1 Lunar Topography Model s01 (CLTM-s01). This topographic field, referenced to a mean radius of 1738 km, has an absolute vertical accuracy of approximately 31 m and a spatial resolution of 0.25o (~7.5 km). This new lunar topographic model has greatly improved previous models in spatial coverage, accuracy and spatial resolution, and also shows the polar regions with the altimeter results for the first time. From CLTM-s01, the mean, equatorial, and polar radii of the Moon are 1737103, 1737646, and 1735843 m, respectively. In the lunar-fixed coordinate system, this model shows a COM/COF offset to be (-1.777, -0.730, 0.237) km along the x, y, and z directions, respectively. All the basic lunar shape parameters derived from CLTM-s01 are in agreement with the results of Clementine GLTM2, but CLTM-s01 offers higher accuracy and reliability due to its better global samplings.

  9. The development of the CHANG'`E-1 lunar explorer laser altimeter (United States)

    Shu, R.; Wang, J. Y.; Hu, Y. H.; Jia, J. J.

    According to Chinese fable CHANG prime E is the name of a peri who lives in the moon with a white rabbit The CHANG prime E-1 lunar explorer will be launched in April 2007 The Lunar Explorer Laser Altimeter LELA is one of the 6 payloads in Chang prime E-1 which is developed by Shanghai Institute of Technical Physics Chinese Academy of Sciences The data of LELA will be used with the Optical Imager for acquiring the three dimension image of the moon surface The LELA transmits laser pulses determines their round trip times to the surface of the moon using a time interval counter and measures ranges between CHANG prime E-1 lunar explorer and the lunar surface in the nadir direction with 5m accuracy every 1 second for 1 year s mission period The acquired range data are transformed to the topography of the moon with the aid of position and attitude data of the CHANG prime E-1 lunar explorer obtained from the ground-based tracking and on board star sensor respectively The mean distances between Chang prime E-1 and the surface of moon is 200Km The LELA utilizes a laser diode LD pumped Q-switched Nd YAG laser that has a wavelength of 1064nm a pulse width of 10ns The output beam divergence is improved to 0 6mrad by Galileo refractor-type collimator which resulted in a moon surface spot size foot print of 120m The return pulses are captured by Cassegrain-type reflector and detected by Si-APD detector The prototype began from 2003 Until now the engineering model had been finished

  10. Status of the Ganymede Laser Altimeter (GALA) for ESA's Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE) (United States)

    Hussmann, Hauke; Luedicke, Fabian


    The Ganymede Laser Altimeter (GALA) is one of the instruments selected for ESA's Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE). A fundamental goal of any exploratory space mission is to characterize and measure the shape, topography, and rotation of the target bodies. A state of the art tool for this task is laser altimetry because it can provide absolute topographic height and position with respect to a body centered reference system. With respect to Ganymede, the GALA instrument aims at mapping of global, regional and local topography; confirming the global subsurface ocean and further characterization of the water-ice/liquid shell by monitoring the dynamic response of the ice shell to tidal forces; providing constraints on the forced physical librations and spin-axis obliquity; determining Ganymede's shape; obtaining detailed topographic profiles across the linear features of grooved terrain, impact structures, possible cryo-volcanic features and other different surface units; providing information about slope, roughness and albedo (at 1064nm) of Ganymede's surface. After several flyby's (Ganymede, Europa, Callisto) it is scheduled that the JUICE orbiter will enter first into an elliptical orbit (200 km x 10.000 km) for around 150 days and then into a circular orbit (500 km) around Ganymede for 130 days. Accordingly to the different orbits and trajectories, distances to the moons respectively, the spot size of the GALA laser varies between 21 m and 140 m. GALA uses the direct-detection (classical) approach of laser altimetry. Laser pulses are emitted at a wavelength of 1064 nm by using an actively Q-switched Nd:Yag laser. The pulse energy and pulse repetition frequency are 17 mJ at 30 Hz (nominal), respectively. For targeted observations and flybys the frequency can be switched to 50 Hz. The emission time of each pulse is measured by the detector. The beam is reflected from the surface and received at a 25 cm diameter telescope. The returning laser pulse is refocused onto

  11. Summary of the results from the lunar orbiter laser altimeter after seven years in lunar orbit (United States)

    Smith, David E.; Zuber, Maria T.; Neumann, Gregory A.; Mazarico, Erwan; Lemoine, Frank G.; Head, James W., III; Lucey, Paul G.; Aharonson, Oded; Robinson, Mark S.; Sun, Xiaoli; Torrence, Mark H.; Barker, Michael K.; Oberst, Juergen; Duxbury, Thomas C.; Mao, Dandan; Barnouin, Olivier S.; Jha, Kopal; Rowlands, David D.; Goossens, Sander; Baker, David; Bauer, Sven; Gläser, Philipp; Lemelin, Myriam; Rosenburg, Margaret; Sori, Michael M.; Whitten, Jennifer; Mcclanahan, Timothy


    In June 2009 the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) spacecraft was launched to the Moon. The payload consists of 7 science instruments selected to characterize sites for future robotic and human missions. Among them, the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) was designed to obtain altimetry, surface roughness, and reflectance measurements. The primary phase of lunar exploration lasted one year, following a 3-month commissioning phase. On completion of its exploration objectives, the LRO mission transitioned to a science mission. After 7 years in lunar orbit, the LOLA instrument continues to map the lunar surface. The LOLA dataset is one of the foundational datasets acquired by the various LRO instruments. LOLA provided a high-accuracy global geodetic reference frame to which past, present and future lunar observations can be referenced. It also obtained high-resolution and accurate global topography that were used to determine regions in permanent shadow at the lunar poles. LOLA further contributed to the study of polar volatiles through its unique measurement of surface brightness at zero phase, which revealed anomalies in several polar craters that may indicate the presence of water ice. In this paper, we describe the many LOLA accomplishments to date and its contribution to lunar and planetary science.

  12. A new lunar digital elevation model from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter and SELENE Terrain Camera (United States)

    Barker, M. K.; Mazarico, E.; Neumann, G. A.; Zuber, M. T.; Haruyama, J.; Smith, D. E.


    We present an improved lunar digital elevation model (DEM) covering latitudes within ±60°, at a horizontal resolution of 512 pixels per degree (∼60 m at the equator) and a typical vertical accuracy ∼3 to 4 m. This DEM is constructed from ∼ 4.5 ×109 geodetically-accurate topographic heights from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, to which we co-registered 43,200 stereo-derived DEMs (each 1° × 1°) from the SELENE Terrain Camera (TC) (∼1010 pixels total). After co-registration, approximately 90% of the TC DEMs show root-mean-square vertical residuals with the LOLA data of profiles (typically amounting to <10 m horizontally and <1 m vertically). By combining both co-registered datasets, we obtain a near-global DEM with high geodetic accuracy, and without the need for surface interpolation. We evaluate the resulting LOLA + TC merged DEM (designated as "SLDEM2015") with particular attention to quantifying seams and crossover errors.

  13. A New Lunar Digital Elevation Model from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter and SELENE Terrain Camera (United States)

    Barker, M. K.; Mazarico, E.; Neumann, G. A.; Zuber, M. T.; Haruyama, J.; Smith, D. E.


    We present an improved lunar digital elevation model (DEM) covering latitudes within +/-60 deg, at a horizontal resolution of 512 pixels per degree ( approx.60 m at the equator) and a typical vertical accuracy approx.3 to 4 m. This DEM is constructed from approx.4.5 ×10(exp 9) geodetically-accurate topographic heights from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, to which we co-registered 43,200 stereo-derived DEMs (each 1 deg×1 deg) from the SELENE Terrain Camera (TC) ( approx.10(exp 10) pixels total). After co-registration, approximately 90% of the TC DEMs show root-mean-square vertical residuals with the LOLA data of < 5 m compared to approx.50% prior to co-registration. We use the co-registered TC data to estimate and correct orbital and pointing geolocation errors from the LOLA altimetric profiles (typically amounting to < 10 m horizontally and < 1 m vertically). By combining both co-registered datasets, we obtain a near-global DEM with high geodetic accuracy, and without the need for surface interpolation. We evaluate the resulting LOLA + TC merged DEM (designated as "SLDEM2015") with particular attention to quantifying seams and crossover errors.

  14. Observations of the north polar region of Mars from the Mars orbiter laser altimeter (United States)

    Zuber, M. T.; Smith, D. E.; Solomon, S. C.; Abshire, J. B.; Afzal, R. S.; Aharonson, O.; Fishbaugh, K.; Ford, P. G.; Frey, H. V.; Garvin, J. B.; Head, J. W.; Ivanov, A. B.; Johnson, C. L.; Muhleman, D. O.; Neumann, G. A.; Pettengill, G. H.; Phillips, R. J.; Sun, X.; Zwally, H. J.; Banerdt, W. B.; Duxbury, T. C.


    Elevations from the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) have been used to construct a precise topographic map of the martian north polar region. The northern ice cap has a maximum elevation of 3 kilometers above its surroundings but lies within a 5-kilometer-deep hemispheric depression that is contiguous with the area into which most outflow channels emptied. Polar cap topography displays evidence of modification by ablation, flow, and wind and is consistent with a primarily H2O composition. Correlation of topography with images suggests that the cap was more spatially extensive in the past. The cap volume of 1.2 x 10(6) to 1.7 x 10(6) cubic kilometers is about half that of the Greenland ice cap. Clouds observed over the polar cap are likely composed of CO2 that condensed out of the atmosphere during northern hemisphere winter. Many clouds exhibit dynamical structure likely caused by the interaction of propagating wave fronts with surface topography.

  15. Martian Polar Region Impact Craters: Geometric Properties From Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) Observations (United States)

    Garvin, J. B.; Sakimoto, S. E. H.; Frawley, J. J.; Matias, A.


    The Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) instrument onboard the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) spacecraft has so far observed approximately 100 impact landforms in the north polar latitudes (>60 degrees N) of Mars. Correlation of the topography with Viking Orbiter images indicate that many of these are near-center profiles, and for some of the most northern craters, multiple data passes have been acquired. The northern high latitudes of Mars may contain substantial ground ice and be topped with seasonal frost (largely CO2 with some water), forming each winter. We have analyzed various diagnostic crater topologic parameters for this high-latitude crater population with the objective of characterizing impact features in north polar terrains, and we explore whether there is evidence of interaction with ground ice, frost, dune movement, or other polar processes. We find that there are substantial topographic variations from the characteristics of midlatitude craters in the polar craters that are not readily apparent from prior images. The transition from small simple craters to large complex craters is not well defined, as was observed in the midlatitude MOLA data (transition at 7-8 km). Additionally, there appear to be additional topographic complexities such as anomalously large central structures in many polar latitude impact features. It is not yet clear if these are due to target-induced differences in the formation of the crater or post-formation modifications from polar processes.

  16. Advanced topographic laser altimeter system (ATLAS) receiver telescope assembly (RTA) and transmitter alignment and test (United States)

    Hagopian, John; Bolcar, Matthew; Chambers, John; Crane, Allen; Eegholm, Bente; Evans, Tyler; Hetherington, Samuel; Mentzell, Eric; Thompson, Patrick L.; Ramos-Izquierdo, Luis; Vaughnn, David


    The sole instrument on NASA's ICESat-2 spacecraft shown in Figure 1 will be the Advanced Topographic Laser Altimeter System (ATLAS)1. The ATLAS is a Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) instrument; it measures the time of flight of the six transmitted laser beams to the Earth and back to determine altitude for geospatial mapping of global ice. The ATLAS laser beam is split into 6 main beams by a Diffractive Optical Element (DOE) that are reflected off of the earth and imaged by an 800 mm diameter Receiver Telescope Assembly (RTA). The RTA is composed of a 2-mirror telescope and Aft Optics Assembly (AOA) that collects and focuses the light from the 6 probe beams into 6 science fibers. Each fiber optic has a field of view on the earth that subtends 83 micro Radians. The light collected by each fiber is detected by a photomultiplier and timing related to a master clock to determine time of flight and therefore distance. The collection of the light from the 6 laser spots projected to the ground allows for dense cross track sampling to provide for slope measurements of ice fields. NASA LIDAR instruments typically utilize telescopes that are not diffraction limited since they function as a light collector rather than imaging function. The more challenging requirements of the ATLAS instrument require better performance of the telescope at the ¼ wave level to provide for improved sampling and signal to noise. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) contracted the build of the telescope to General Dynamics (GD). GD fabricated and tested the flight and flight spare telescope and then integrated the government supplied AOA for testing of the RTA before and after vibration qualification. The RTA was then delivered to GSFC for independent verification and testing over expected thermal vacuum conditions. The testing at GSFC included a measurement of the RTA wavefront error and encircled energy in several orientations to determine the expected zero gravity figure, encircled

  17. Analysis of global static and time-dependent topography from laser altimeter data records using a rectangular-grid method (United States)

    Koch, Ch.; Christensen, U. R.; Kallenbach, R.


    ABSTRACT BepiColombo is one of the cornerstone missions of ESA to investigate Mercury. The mission consists of two orbiters, one for studying Mercury's magnetosphere (MMO) and the other for investigating the planet itself (MPO). MPO includes the laser altimeter BELA whose main goals are the mapping of the long-wavelength topography and retrieving time-dependent variations of Mercury's surface. Due to its proximity to the Sun tidal elevations ofMercury's surface of order one meter are likely, if the planet's core is partly liquid. The tidal amplitude is characterized by the tidal Love number h2. Its quantity reveals information on the interior structure of Mercury such as the thickness of the liquid outer core. In previous simulations, Mercury's topography data from synthetic laser altimeter records have directly been decomposed into a spherical harmonic expansion. In this work, we test a decomposition of the data using a rectangular grid. In latitudinal direction, the basis functions are simple step functions which are only non-zero for a particular grid cell. In longitudinal direction, the basis functions are either step functions, linear functions, or more sophisticated interpolations. This choice of basis functions is well suited for the nearly polar orbit of MPO which makes laser shots very dense in latitudinal direction but less dense in longitudinal direction. We show first results on the extraction of the global topography and the tidal Love number h2.

  18. Lunar phase function at 1064 nm from Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter passive and active radiometry (United States)

    Barker, M. K.; Sun, X.; Mazarico, E.; Neumann, G. A.; Zuber, M. T.; Smith, D. E.


    We present initial calibration and results of passive radiometry collected by the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter over the course of 12 months. After correcting for time- and temperature-dependent dark noise and detector responsivity variations, the LOLA passive radiometry measurements are brought onto the absolute radiance scale of the SELENE Spectral Profiler. The resulting photometric precision is estimated to be ∼5%. We leverage the unique ability of LOLA to measure normal albedo to explore the 1064 nm phase function's dependence on various geologic parameters. On a global scale, we find that iron abundance and optical maturity (quantified by FeO and OMAT) are the dominant controlling parameters. Titanium abundance (TiO2), surface roughness on decimeter to decameter scales, and soil thermophysical properties have a smaller effect, but the latter two are correlated with OMAT, indicating that exposure age is the driving force behind their effects in a globally-averaged sense. The phase function also exhibits a dependence on surface slope at ∼300 m baselines, possibly the result of mass wasting exposing immature material and/or less space weathering due to reduced sky visibility. Modeling the photometric function in the Hapke framework, we find that, relative to the highlands, the maria exhibit decreased backscattering, a smaller opposition effect (OE) width, and a smaller OE amplitude. Immature highlands regolith has a higher backscattering fraction and a larger OE width compared to mature highlands regolith. Within the maria, the backscattering fraction and OE width show little dependence on TiO2 and OMAT. Variations in the phase function shape at large phase angles are observed in and around the Copernican-aged Jackson crater, including its dark halo, a putative impact melt deposit. Finally, the phase function of the Reiner Gamma Formation behaves more optically immature than is typical for its composition and OMAT

  19. Lunar Phase Function at 1064 Nm from Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter Passive and Active Radiometry (United States)

    Barker, M. K.; Sun, X.; Mazarico, E.; Neumann, G. A.; Zuber, M. T.; Smith, D. E.


    We present initial calibration and results of passive radiometry collected by the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter over the course of 12 months. After correcting for time- and temperature-dependent dark noise and detector responsivity variations, the LOLA passive radiometry measurements are brought onto the absolute radiance scale of the SELENE Spectral Profiler. The resulting photometric precision is estimated to be 5%. We leverage the unique ability of LOLA to measure normal albedo to explore the 1064 nm phase function's dependence on various geologic parameters. On a global scale, we find that iron abundance and optical maturity (quantified by FeO and OMAT) are the dominant controlling parameters. Titanium abundance (TiO2), surface roughness on decimeter to decameter scales, and soil thermo- physical properties have a smaller effect, but the latter two are correlated with OMAT, indicating that exposure age is the driving force behind their effects in a globally-averaged sense. The phase function also exhibits a dependence on surface slope at approximately 300 m baselines, possibly the result of mass wasting exposing immature material and/or less space weathering due to reduced sky visibility. Modeling the photometric function in the Hapke framework, we find that, relative to the highlands, the maria exhibit decreased backscattering, a smaller opposition effect (OE) width, and a smaller OE amplitude. Immature highlands regolith has a higher backscattering fraction and a larger OE width compared to mature highlands regolith. Within the maria, the backscattering fraction and OE width show little dependence on TiO2 and OMAT. Variations in the phase function shape at large phase angles are observed in and around the Copernican-aged Jackson crater, including its dark halo, a putative impact melt deposit. Finally, the phase function of the Reiner Gamma Formation behaves more optically immature than is typical for its composition

  20. The Reflectivity of Mars at 1064 nm: Derivation from Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter Data and Application to Climatology and Meteorology

    CERN Document Server

    Heavens, Nicholas G


    The Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) on board Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) made $\\gg 10^{8}$ measurements of the reflectivity of Mars at 1064 nm ($R_{1064}$) by both active sounding and passive radiometry. Past studies of $R_{1064}$ neglected the effects of atmospheric opacity and viewing geometry on both active and passive measurements and also identified a potential calibration issue with passive radiometry. Therefore, as yet, there exists no acceptable reference $R_{1064}$ to derive a column opacity product from surface returns during active sounding for the purposes of atmospheric studies. Here, such a reference $R_{1064}$ is derived by seeking $R^{M,N}_{1064}$: a Minnaert-corrected normal albedo under clear conditions and assuming minimal phase angle dependence. Over darker surfaces, $R^{M,N}_{1064}$ and the absolute level of atmospheric opacity were estimated from active sounding. Over all surfaces, the opacity derived from active sounding were used to filter out the cloudiest passive radiometry measur...

  1. Low-amplitude topographic features and textures on the Moon: Initial results from detrended Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) topography (United States)

    Kreslavsky, Mikhail A.; Head, James W.; Neumann, Gregory A.; Zuber, Maria T.; Smith, David E.


    Global lunar topographic data derived from ranging measurements by the Lunar Oribter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) onboard LRO mission to the Moon have extremely high vertical precision. We use detrended topography as a means for utilization of this precision in geomorphological analysis. The detrended topography was calculated as a difference between actual topography and a trend surface defined as a median topography in a circular sliding window. We found that despite complicated distortions caused by the non-linear nature of the detrending procedure, visual inspection of these data facilitates identification of low-amplitude gently-sloping geomorphic features. We present specific examples of patterns of lava flows forming the lunar maria and revealing compound flow fields, a new class of lava flow complex on the Moon. We also highlight the identification of linear tectonic features that otherwise are obscured in the images and topographic data processed in a more traditional manner.

  2. Recent Data Campaigns and Results from the Laser Vegetation Imaging Sensor (LVIS): An Airborne, Medium-Footprint, Full-Waveform, Swath Mapping Laser Altimeter System (United States)

    Blair, J. B.; Hofton, M. A.; Rabine, D. L.; Luthcke, S. B.; Greim, H.


    The Laser Vegetation Imaging Sensor (LVIS) is an airborne, medium-sized footprint laser altimeter system. By digitally recording the shape of the returning laser pulse (waveform), LVIS provides a precise and accurate view of the vertical structure within each footprint/pixel including both the sub-canopy and canopy-top topography. Applications of LVIS data include biomass estimation for a wide variety of forest types, ground surface change detection for tectonic studies, mapping sea surface topography to assist in coastal hazard assessment, and hydrology studies utilizing sub-canopy topography in densely forested regions. Since 1998, LVIS data have been collected in various areas of New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, California, Maryland, Panama and Costa Rica. The data calibration and geolocation processing system utilizes a formal Bayesian least-squares-estimation of pointing, ranging and timing parameters based on a batch reduction of altimeter range residuals. Data are released publicly on the LVIS website at Results show data precisions of landcover type and study site location. Comparisons between LVIS and ICESat will also be presented.

  3. Crater Morphometry and Crater Degradation on Mercury: Mercury Laser Altimeter (MLA) Measurements and Comparison to Stereo-DTM Derived Results (United States)

    Leight, C.; Fassett, C. I.; Crowley, M. C.; Dyar, M. D.


    Two types of measurements of Mercury's surface topography were obtained by the MESSENGER (MErcury Surface Space ENvironment, GEochemisty and Ranging) spacecraft: laser ranging data from Mercury Laser Altimeter (MLA) [1], and stereo imagery from the Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS) camera [e.g., 2, 3]. MLA data provide precise and accurate elevation meaurements, but with sparse spatial sampling except at the highest northern latitudes. Digital terrain models (DTMs) from MDIS have superior resolution but with less vertical accuracy, limited approximately to the pixel resolution of the original images (in the case of [3], 15-75 m). Last year [4], we reported topographic measurements of craters in the D=2.5 to 5 km diameter range from stereo images and suggested that craters on Mercury degrade more quickly than on the Moon (by a factor of up to approximately 10×). However, we listed several alternative explanations for this finding, including the hypothesis that the lower depth/diameter ratios we observe might be a result of the resolution and accuracy of the stereo DTMs. Thus, additional measurements were undertaken using MLA data to examine the morphometry of craters in this diameter range and assess whether the faster crater degradation rates proposed to occur on Mercury is robust.

  4. A new, high-resolution digital elevation model of Greenland fully validated with airborne laser altimeter data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bamber, J.L.; Ekholm, Simon; Krabill, W.B.


    A new digital elevation model of the Greenland ice sheet and surrounding rock outcrops has been produced at 1-km postings from a comprehensive suite of satellite remote sensing and cartographic data sets. Height data over the ice sheet were mainly from ERS-1 and Geosat radar altimetry. These data...... coverage existed. The data were interpolated onto a regular grid with a spacing of similar to1 km. The accuracy of the resultant digital elevation model over the ice sheet was assessed using independent and spatially extensive measurements from an airborne laser altimeter that had an accuracy of between 10...... and 12 cm. In a comparison with the laser altimetry the digital elevation model was found to have a slope-dependent accuracy ranging from -1.04 +/-1.98 m to -0.06 +/- 14.33 m over the ice sheet for a slope range of 0.0-1.0 degrees. The mean accuracy over the whole ice sheet was -0.33 +/-6.97 m. Over...

  5. Extraction of the tidal amplitude from synthetic topography data of the BepiColombo laser altimeter in the polar regions of Mercury (United States)

    Koch, Ch.; Christensen, U. R.; Kallenbach, R.


    ABSTRACT BepiColombo is one of the cornerstone missions of ESA to investigate Mercury which is the least investigated planet in the Solar System. The weak magnetic field observed by Mariner 10 in 1974 can be explained by a partly liquid core. The tidal Love number h2 reveals information on the thickness of the liquid outer core. The BepiColombo laser altimeter (BELA) on board the MPO spacecraft will map the entire surface of Mercury and should in principle allow for the retrieval of the tidal elevation of order one meter caused by solar gravitation. The highest density of BELA data are to be expected in the polar regions of Mercury because MPO orbits Mercury on a nearly polar trajectory. In previous simulations, we have tested whether it is possible to retrieve the tidal Love number h2 simultaneously with a spherical harmonic analysis of the global static topography of Mercury. Here, the analysis of orbit crossing points is presented. This analysis contains three main sources of uncertainty: a) instrumental and spacecraft positioning uncertainties, b) uncertainties due to the small-scale topography between two laser altimeter measurements, and c) uncertainties from the interpolation between laser altimeter measurement points. It can be shown that the uncertainty of the Love number can be reduced to about 3% using the crossing-point method. This is sufficient to test present theoretical models on the interior structure of Mercury.

  6. Altimeter Setting Indicator (United States)

    Department of Transportation — The Altimeter Setting Indicator (ASI) is an aneroid system used at airports to provide an altimeter setting for aircraft altimeters. This indicator may be an analog...

  7. High Resolution Airborne InSAR DEM of Bagley Ice Valley, South-central Alaska: Geodetic Validation with Airborne Laser Altimeter Data (United States)

    Muskett, R. R.; Lingle, C. S.; Echelmeyer, K. A.; Valentine, V. B.; Elsberg, D.


    Bagley Ice Valley, in the St. Elias and Chugach Mountains of south-central Alaska, is an integral part of the largest connected glacierized terrain on the North American continent. From the flow divide between Mt. Logan and Mt. St. Elias, Bagley Ice Valley flows west-northwest for some 90 km down a slope of less than 1o, at widths up to 15 km, to a saddle-gap where it turns south-west to become Bering Glacier. During 4-13 September 2000, an airborne survey of Bagley Ice Valley was performed by Intermap Technologies, Inc., using their Star-3i X-band SAR interferometer. The resulting digital elevation model (DEM) covers an area of 3243 km2. The DEM elevations are orthometric heights, in meters above the EGM96 geoid. The horizontal locations of the 10-m postings are with respect to the WGS84 ellipsoid. On 26 August 2000, 9 to 18 days prior to the Intermap Star-3i survey, a small-aircraft laser altimeter profile was acquired along the central flow line for validation. The laser altimeter data consists of elevations above the WGS84 ellipsoid and orthometric heights above GEOID99-Alaska. Assessment of the accuracy of the Intermap Star-3i DEM was made by comparison of both the DEM orthometric heights and elevations above the WGS84 ellipsoid with the laser altimeter data. Comparison of the orthometric heights showed an average difference of 5.4 +/- 1.0 m (DEM surface higher). Comparison of elevations above the WGS84 ellipsoid showed an average difference of -0.77 +/- 0.93 m (DEM surface lower). This indicates that the X-band Star-3i interferometer was penetrating the glacier surface by an expected small amount. The WGS84 comparison is well within the 3 m RMS accuracy quoted for GT-3 DEM products. Snow accumulation may have occurred, however, on Bagley Ice Valley between 26 August and 4-13 September 2000. This will be estimated using a mass balance model and used to correct the altimeter-derived surface heights. The new DEM of Bagley Ice Valley will provide a reference

  8. Development and validation of a microchip pulsed laser for ESA space altimeters (United States)

    Couto, Bruno; Abreu, Hernâni; Gordo, Paulo; Amorim, António


    The development and validation of small size laser sources for space based range finding is of crucial importance to the development of miniature LIDAR devices for European space missions, particularly for planet lander probes. In this context, CENTRA-SIM is developing a passively q-switched microchip laser in the 1.5μm wavelength range. Pulses in the order of 2 ns and 100μJ were found to be suitable for range finding for small landing platforms. Both glass and crystalline Yb-Er doped active media are commonly available. Crystalline media present higher thermal conductivity and hardness, which allows for higher pumping intensities. However, glass laser media present longer laser upper-state lifetime and 99% Yb-Er transfer efficiency make phosphate glasses the typically preferred host for this type of application. In addition to this, passively q-switched microchip lasers with Yb-Er doped phosphate glass have been reported to output >100μJ pulses while their crystalline host counterparts achieve a few tens of μJ at best. Two different types of rate equation models have been found: microscopic quantities based models and macroscopic quantities based models. Based on the works of Zolotovskaya et al. and Spühler et al, we have developed a computer model that further exploits the equivalence between the two types of approaches. The simulation studies, using commercial available components allowed us to design a compact laser emitting 80μJ pulses with up to 30kW peak power and 1 to 2 ns pulse width. We considered EAT14 Yb-Er doped glass as active medium and Co2+:MgAl2O4 as saturable absorber. The active medium is pumped by a 975nm semiconductor laser focused into a 200μm spot. Measurements on an experimental test bench to validate the numerical model were carried out. Several different combinations of, saturable absorber length and output coupling were experimented.

  9. Detecting volcanic resurfacing of heavily cratered terrain: Flooding simulations on the Moon using Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) data (United States)

    Whitten, Jennifer L.; Head, James W.


    Early extrusive volcanism from mantle melting marks the transition from primary to secondary crust formation. Detection of secondary crust is often obscured by the high impact flux early in solar system history. To recognize the relationship between heavily cratered terrain and volcanic resurfacing, this study documents how volcanic resurfacing alters the impact cratering record and models the thickness, area, and volume of volcanic flood deposits. Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) data are used to analyze three different regions of the lunar highlands: the Hertzsprung basin; a farside heavily cratered region; and the central highlands. Lunar mare emplacement style is assumed to be similar to that of terrestrial flood basalts, involving large volumes of material extruded from dike-fed fissures over relatively short periods of time. Thus, each region was flooded at 0.5 km elevation intervals to simulate such volcanic flooding and to assess areal patterns, thickness, volumes, and emplacement history. These simulations show three primary stages of volcanic flooding: (1) Initial flooding is largely confined to individual craters and deposits are thick and localized; (2) basalt flows breach crater rim crests and are emplaced laterally between larger craters as thin widespread deposits; and (3) lateral spreading decreases in response to regional topographic variations and the deposits thicken and bury intermediate-sized and larger craters. Application of these techniques to the South Pole-Aitken basin shows that emplacement of ∼1-2 km of cryptomaria can potentially explain the paucity of craters 20-64 km in diameter on the floor of the basin relative to the distribution in the surrounding highlands.

  10. Lunar Impact Basins: Stratigraphy, Sequence and Ages from Superposed Impact Crater Populations Measured from Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) Data (United States)

    Fassett, C. I.; Head, J. W.; Kadish, S. J.; Mazarico, E.; Neumann, G. A.; Smith, D. E.; Zuber, M. T.


    Impact basin formation is a fundamental process in the evolution of the Moon and records the history of impactors in the early solar system. In order to assess the stratigraphy, sequence, and ages of impact basins and the impactor population as a function of time, we have used topography from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) on the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) to measure the superposed impact crater size-frequency distributions for 30 lunar basins (D = 300 km). These data generally support the widely used Wilhelms sequence of lunar basins, although we find significantly higher densities of superposed craters on many lunar basins than derived by Wilhelms (50% higher densities). Our data also provide new insight into the timing of the transition between distinct crater populations characteristic of ancient and young lunar terrains. The transition from a lunar impact flux dominated by Population 1 to Population 2 occurred before the mid-Nectarian. This is before the end of the period of rapid cratering, and potentially before the end of the hypothesized Late Heavy Bombardment. LOLA-derived crater densities also suggest that many Pre-Nectarian basins, such as South Pole-Aitken, have been cratered to saturation equilibrium. Finally, both crater counts and stratigraphic observations based on LOLA data are applicable to specific basin stratigraphic problems of interest; for example, using these data, we suggest that Serenitatis is older than Nectaris, and Humboldtianum is younger than Crisium. Sample return missions to specific basins can anchor these measurements to a Pre-Imbrian absolute chronology.

  11. Engineering study for pallet adapting the Apollo laser altimeter and photographic camera system for the Lidar Test Experiment on orbital flight tests 2 and 4 (United States)

    Kuebert, E. J.


    A Laser Altimeter and Mapping Camera System was included in the Apollo Lunar Orbital Experiment Missions. The backup system, never used in the Apollo Program, is available for use in the Lidar Test Experiments on the STS Orbital Flight Tests 2 and 4. Studies were performed to assess the problem associated with installation and operation of the Mapping Camera System in the STS. They were conducted on the photographic capabilities of the Mapping Camera System, its mechanical and electrical interface with the STS, documentation, operation and survivability in the expected environments, ground support equipment, test and field support.

  12. Photon-counting spaceborne altimeter simulator (United States)

    Blazej, Josef


    We are presenting of a photon counting laser altimeter simulator. The simulator is designed to be a theoretical and numerical complement for a Technology Demonstrator of the space born laser altimeter for planetary studies built on our university. The European Space Agency has nominated the photon counting altimeter as one of the attractive devices for planetary research. The device should provide altimetry in the range 400 to 1400 km with one meter range resolution under rough conditions - Sun illumination, radiation, etc. The general altimeter concept expects the photon counting principle laser radar. According to this concept, the simulator is based on photon counting radar simulation, which has been enhanced to handle planetary surface roughness, vertical terrain profile and its reflectivity. The simulator is useful complement for any photon counting altimeter both for altimeter design and for measured data analysis. Our simulator enables to model the orbital motion, range, terrain profile, reflectivity, and their influence on the over all energy budget and the ultimate signal to noise ratio acceptable for the altimetry. The simulator can be adopted for various air or space born application.

  13. Stratigraphy, Sequence, and Crater Populations of Lunar Impact Basins from Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) Data: Implications for the Late Heavy Bombardment (United States)

    Fassett, C. I.; Head, J. W.; Kadish, S. J.; Mazarico, E.; Neumann, G. A.; Smith, D. E.; Zuber, M. T.


    New measurements of the topography of the Moon from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA)[1] provide an excellent base-map for analyzing the large crater population (D.20 km)of the lunar surface [2, 3]. We have recently used this data to calculate crater size-frequency distributions (CSFD) for 30 lunar impact basins, which have implications for their stratigraphy and sequence. These data provide an avenue for assessing the timing of the transitions between distinct crater populations characteristic of ancient and young lunar terrains, which has been linked to the late heavy bombardment (LHB). We also use LOLA data to re-examine relative stratigraphic relationships between key lunar basins.

  14. Matter-wave laser Interferometric Gravitation Antenna (MIGA): New perspectives for fundamental physics and geosciences

    CERN Document Server

    Geiger, R; Bertoldi, A; Canuel, B; Chaibi, W; Danquigny, C; Dutta, I; Fang, B; Gaffet, S; Gillot, J; Holleville, D; Landragin, A; Merzougui, M; Riou, I; Savoie, D; Bouyer, P


    The MIGA project aims at demonstrating precision measurements of gravity with cold atom sensors in a large scale instrument and at studying the associated powerful applications in geosciences and fundamental physics. The firt stage of the project (2013-2018) will consist in building a 300-meter long optical cavity to interrogate atom interferometers and will be based at the low noise underground laboratory LSBB based in Rustrel, France. The second stage of the project (2018-2023) will be dedicated to science runs and data analyses in order to probe the spatio-temporal structure of the local gravity field of the LSBB region, which represents a generic site of hydrological interest. MIGA will also assess future potential applications of atom interferometry to gravitational wave detection in the frequency band 0.1-10 Hz hardly covered by future long baseline optical interferometers. This paper presents the main objectives of the project, the status of the construction of the instrument and the motivation for the...

  15. The matter-wave laser interferometer gravitation antenna (MIGA: New perspectives for fundamental physics and geosciences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Canuel B.


    Full Text Available We are building a hybrid detector of new concept that couples laser and matter-wave interferometry to study sub Hertz variations of the strain tensor of space-time and gravitation. Using a set of atomic interferometers simultaneously manipulated by the resonant optical field of a 200 m cavity, the MIGA instrument will allow the monitoring of the evolution of the gravitational field at unprecedented sensitivity, which will be exploited both for geophysical studies and for Gravitational Waves (GWs detection. This new infrastructure will be embedded into the LSBB underground laboratory, ideally located away from major anthropogenic disturbances and benefitting from very low background noise.

  16. Petroleum geoscience

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Rasoul Sorkhabi


    @@ Successful textbooks educate generations,and in a way define generations of scientists. As science and technology advance,textbooks become old and outdated. Nevertheless, each textbook serves as a foundation for the next, and thus a series of textbooks on a particular subject reflects the evolution of concepts, methods and data on the subject. As I write this review, there are eight textbooks on petroleum geology on my bookshelf: D. Hager's Practical Oil Geology (1915) (the first textbook of its kind); W.H. Emmons' Geology of Petroleum (1921), Cecil Lalicker's Principles of Petroleum Geology (1949); William Russell's Principles of Petroleum Geology (1951); Kenneth Landes' Petroleum Geology (1951); A. I. Levorsen's Geology of Petroleum (2nd ed., 1967); F. K. North's Petroleum Geology (1985); and Richard Selley's Elements of Petroleum Geology (2nd ed., 1998). Petroleum Geoscience by Gluyas and Swarbrick is a welcome addition to this list although its authors do not mention their predecessors.

  17. The transition from complex crater to peak-ring basin on the Moon: New observations from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) instrument (United States)

    Baker, David M. H.; Head, James W.; Fassett, Caleb I.; Kadish, Seth J.; Smith, Dave E.; Zuber, Maria T.; Neumann, Gregory A.


    Impact craters on planetary bodies transition with increasing size from simple, to complex, to peak-ring basins and finally to multi-ring basins. Important to understanding the relationship between complex craters with central peaks and multi-ring basins is the analysis of protobasins (exhibiting a rim crest and interior ring plus a central peak) and peak-ring basins (exhibiting a rim crest and an interior ring). New data have permitted improved portrayal and classification of these transitional features on the Moon. We used new 128 pixel/degree gridded topographic data from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) instrument onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, combined with image mosaics, to conduct a survey of craters >50 km in diameter on the Moon and to update the existing catalogs of lunar peak-ring basins and protobasins. Our updated catalog includes 17 peak-ring basins (rim-crest diameters range from 207 km to 582 km, geometric mean = 343 km) and 3 protobasins (137-170 km, geometric mean = 157 km). Several basins inferred to be multi-ring basins in prior studies (Apollo, Moscoviense, Grimaldi, Freundlich-Sharonov, Coulomb-Sarton, and Korolev) are now classified as peak-ring basins due to their similarities with lunar peak-ring basin morphologies and absence of definitive topographic ring structures greater than two in number. We also include in our catalog 23 craters exhibiting small ring-like clusters of peaks (50-205 km, geometric mean = 81 km); one (Humboldt) exhibits a rim-crest diameter and an interior morphology that may be uniquely transitional to the process of forming peak rings. A power-law fit to ring diameters ( Dring) and rim-crest diameters ( Dr) of peak-ring basins on the Moon [ Dring = 0.14 ± 0.10( Dr) 1.21±0.13] reveals a trend that is very similar to a power-law fit to peak-ring basin diameters on Mercury [ Dring = 0.25 ± 0.14( Drim) 1.13±0.10] [Baker, D.M.H. et al. [2011]. Planet. Space Sci., in press]. Plots of ring

  18. 用于月球着陆的激光高度计热控设计探讨%Optimization of thermal control design for laser altimeter used during lunar landing

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    宋馨; 张有为; 贾建军; 刘自军


    The Land-On-Moon Orbit has obvious transient characteristics. The optimization principle of the thermal control design plan for the laser equipment used on the Land-On-Moon Orbit is discussed through the thermal analysis. The best thermal control design plan is to use the heat capacity of the equipment, unless the laser equipment is required to operate for a long time. An application case is the thermal control design plan for the laser altimeter used on the Chang’e-3, which uses the heat capacity of the equipment. The remote measurement data show that the temperature restriction of the equipment is realized. The thermal control design method is shown to be practical.%文章对落月轨道的外热流进行了分析,比较了几种热控设计方案的优缺点,探讨了热控优化设计的原则,认为在落月轨道上激光设备的热控设计应首选热容热控方案,对于在其他飞行阶段有长期开机需求的情况再考虑散热面方案或热电致冷方案。“嫦娥三号”月面探测器激光高度计采用了热容热控设计,该设备热控设计能够满足不同阶段温度指标要求并且与热分析结果相一致,热控设计方案正确、优化原则合理可行。

  19. Estimates of forest height in the Amazon basin using radar altimeter data of SARIN mode onboard Cryosat-2 (United States)

    Yang, L.; Sun, G.; Liu, Q.


    Forest height is an important parameter for global carbon cycle studies. New technologies are required since the end of the operation ofGeoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) onboard The Ice, Cloud, and land Elevation Satellite (IceSat) in 2009. CryoSat-2 is a European Space Agencyenvironmental research satellite which was launched in April 2010.The SIRAL (SAR Interferometer Radar Altimeter) on board CryoSat-2 provides three operational modes for different observational requirements. Before the launch of Icesat2 around July 2016, CryoSat data represents a unique source of information on regional-to-global scale forest canopy height.We propose to use radar altimetry waveforms from the synthetic aperture/interferometric (SARin) mode to estimate canopy height in the Amazon basin. To understand the relation between canopy structure and the SIRAL waveform in Ku band, a 3D model was developed and implemented based on a Lidar model by introducingthe scattering items from crown, trunk and ground surface at Ku band. The vertical distribution of tree crown volume within a SIRAL footprint was calculated from its 3-D stand model by summing the volumes of all tree crown cells at the same height from the ground. The preliminary comparisons between simulated and measured SIRAL waveforms show that the model captures the major characteristics of the SIRAL signature. Cryosat waveform data of SARin mode and from June, 2011 to June, 2012 (cycle 04) is used to retrieve canopy height at Amazon basin under Cryosat groundtrack. The canopy height is derived by extracting the key points of vegetation and ground returns after noise estimation. Because of lack of field tree height measurement in 2012 at Amazon, we validated the results using the field measurements at four areas (the km 67 camp, the km 77 camp, Ruropolis, the Taoajos river) of Tapajos National Forest, Brazil in November 1999, and compared the results with the canopy height estimation from previous studies using Laser

  20. Geosciences projects FY 1985 listing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    This report, which updates the previous working group publication issued in February 1982, contains independent sections: (A) Summary Outline of DOE Geoscience and Related Studies, and (B) Crosscut of DOE Geoscience and Geoscience Related Studies. The FY 1985 funding levels for geoscience and related activities in each of the 11 programs within DOE are presented. The 11 programs fall under six DOE organizations: Energy Research Conservation and Renewable Energy; Fossil Energy; Defense Programs; Environmental, Safety, and Health; and Civilian radioactive Waste. From time to time, there is particular need for special interprogrammatic coordination within certain topical areas. section B of the report is intended to fill this need for a topical categorization of the Department's geoscience and related activities. These topical areas in Solid Earth Geosciences, Atmospheric Geosciences, Ocean Geosciences, Space and Solar/Terrestrial Geosciences, and Hydrological Geosciences are presented in this report.

  1. 高速铁路CPⅢ高程控制网测量方法研究%Methods to derive lunar DEM from Chang'E-1 laser altimeter data

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李书亮; 刘成龙; 倪先桃; 徐小左


    本文分析高速铁路CPⅢ高程控制网建网时普遍采用的德国测量方法,指出其存在的不足,在此基础上提出了技术上更为合理又适合我国国情的矩形法测量方法.通过对矩形法相邻点高差相对中误差和最弱点高程中误差的估算以及实验验证,认为矩形法可以用于CPⅢ高程网的建网测量.研究结果对于目前高速铁路工程测量相关规范的制订和在建高速铁路CPⅢ高程网的测量具有重要的参照价值.%High-resolution digital elevation models (DEMs) based on data from Laser Altimeter (LAM) of Chinese Chang'E-1 mission provide geospatial characterizations of lunar topography. The primary LAM elevation data are two-dimensional topographic profiles. Developing three-dimensional DEMs from these profile data requires the elimination of gross errors and the interpolation of a confinuous surface. To detect and remove the error ( pseudo elevation) data from LAM observations the paper suggested an improved linear filter based on empirical formula which adapts the lunar surface feature. And the key parameters for this filter were discussed. In the second part, it tested eight different techniques of spatial interpolation with the filtered data. After comparing and analyzing these interpolation methods by their accuracies, shaded-relief visualizations and topographic profiles, it found the Kriging method worked better than other seven methods in deriving DEM grid. At last, an effective procedure for processing CE-1 elevation data was outlined, and the corresponding parameters were suggested.

  2. GPS Survey of the salar de Uyuni, Bolivia, for Satellite Altimeter Calibration (United States)

    Borsa, A. A.; Fricker, H. A.; Bills, B. G.; Carabajal, C. C.; Quinn, K.; Minster, J. B.; Schutz, B.


    The salar de Uyuni, a 100km x 100km salt flat in the Andean Altiplano of southern Bolivia, is the largest dry lake on Earth. The size, high albedo and remarkable flatness of the salar make it an ideal reference surface for satellite-based altimeters - in particular, the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) to be flown on the Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) - especially with regard to range measurements and waveform analysis of return signals. A simple reference surface such as the salar can be mapped by ground-based surveying, although the sheer size of the area requires adaptations to standard survey techniques. We describe a survey of the salar de Uyuni carried out with car-mounted kinematic GPS over a seven-day period in September 2002. We divided the salar surface into a number of survey grids that were driven in multiple directions to yield redundant measurements and corresponding error statistics at grid crossover points. Adjacent grids were overlapped so we could also determine errors between grids and over multi-day time periods. In addition, we set up five fixed GPS sites on the salar to serve as local survey control in post-processing. These fixed sites will be used to map ionospheric effects and interpolate them to the roving GPS receivers. If successful, this will allow reprocessing of GPS solutions using L1 data only, with a corresponding reduction in noise compared to solutions using the standard ionosphere-free LC combination. We present our surveyed topography of the eastern half of the salar de Uyuni, comparing it to previously-published elevation measurements and to the best geoid model available for the region. We show the close relationship between the topography of the salar and the shape of the geoid, a result we had expected since the salar is flooded each austral summer to an almost uniform depth. We also demonstrate knowledge of the surface height of the salar to within the measurement error specified for the GLAS

  3. Web-based Altimeter Service (United States)

    Callahan, P. S.; Wilson, B. D.; Xing, Z.; Raskin, R. G.


    We have developed a web-based system to allow updating and subsetting of TOPEX data. The Altimeter Service will be operated by PODAAC along with their other provision of oceanographic data. The Service could be easily expanded to other mission data. An Altimeter Service is crucial to the improvement and expanded use of altimeter data. A service is necessary for altimetry because the result of most interest - sea surface height anomaly (SSHA) - is composed of several components that are updated individually and irregularly by specialized experts. This makes it difficult for projects to provide the most up-to-date products. Some components are the subject of ongoing research, so the ability for investigators to make products for comparison or sharing is important. The service will allow investigators/producers to get their component models or processing into widespread use much more quickly. For coastal altimetry, the ability to subset the data to the area of interest and insert specialized models (e.g., tides) or data processing results is crucial. A key part of the Altimeter Service is having data producers provide updated or local models and data. In order for this to succeed, producers need to register their products with the Altimeter Service and to provide the product in a form consistent with the service update methods. We will describe the capabilities of the web service and the methods for providing new components. Currently the Service is providing TOPEX GDRs with Retracking (RGDRs) in netCDF format that has been coordinated with Jason data. Users can add new orbits, tide models, gridded geophysical fields such as mean sea surface, and along-track corrections as they become available and are installed by PODAAC. The updated fields are inserted into the netCDF files while the previous values are retained for comparison. The Service will also generate SSH and SSHA. In addition, the Service showcases a feature that plots any variable from files in netCDF. The

  4. Geosciences for sustainability (United States)

    Ferreira, A. J. D.


    The world is facing overwhelming challenges with implications on the socio-economic performance and the quality of life around the planet. New solutions are needed to prevent, overcome or mitigate the turmoil processes caused by global change, resources exhaustion, and the procession of induced socio-economic impacts. To this end, solutions to optimize natural resources management, find new ways of using geophysical processes and properties as resources, and to use geosciences knowledge to find new, more sustainable ways to use earth resources, has to be sought for. This work is based on a literature review and on the building of a sustainable development strategy currently being prepared at the Portuguese Centro Region by the author, as part of a Research Centre strategy towards the improvement of environmental performance, of organizations, products and infrastructures. The strategy is based on the optimal use of environmental services, to which the role of geosciences and is a key element. Harnessing the abiotic milieu and processes and mimicking the multiple scale interactions of ecosystem to improve the organization and the productivity and value of man ventures. Geosciences provide the matrix where activities occur; therefore, their judicious management will optimise resources use, providing the best solutions. In addition, geosciences and their relation with ecosystem research can be managed to improve yields, by optimizing the agriculture and forestry practices. One way to proceed, that is in the forefront of research towards sustainability is by developing ways to include geosciences and ecosystems factors in novel Environmental Management tools such as Life Cycle Assessments or Environmental Management Systems. Furthermore, the knowledge on geosciences cycles and processes is of paramount importance in any planning process and in the design of infrastructures, which has a key direct or indirect role in the optimization of energy management.

  5. Improved retracking algorithm for oceanic altimeter waveforms

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lifeng Bao; Yang Lu; Yong Wang


    Over the deep oceans without land/ice interference, the waveforms created by the return altimeter pulse generally follow the ocean model of Brown, and the corresponding range can be properly determined using the result from an onboard tracker. In the case of com-plex altimeter waveforms corrupted due to a variety of reasons, the processor on the satellite cannot properly determine the center of the leading edge, and range observations can be in error. As an efficacious method to improve the precision of those altimeter observations with complex waveforms, waveform retracking is required to reprocess the original returning pulse. Based on basic altimeter theory and the geometric feature of altimeter waveforms, we developed a new altimeter waveform retracker, which is valid for all altimeter wave-forms once there exists a reasonable returning signal. The performances of the existing Beta-5 retracker, threshold retracker, improved threshold retracker, and the new retracker are assessed in the experimental regions (China Seas and its adjacent regions), and the improvements in the accuracy of sea surface height are investigated by the difference between retracked altimeter observations and ref-erenced geoid. The comparisons denote that the new algorithm gives the best performance in both the open ocean and coastal regions. Also, the new retracker presents a uniform performance in the whole test region. Besides, there is a significant improvement in the short-wavelength precision and the spatial resolution of sea surface height after retracking process.

  6. Geoscience on television

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hut, Rolf; Land-Zandstra, Anne M.; Smeets, Ionica; Stoof, Cathelijne R.


    Geoscience communication is becoming increasingly important as climate change increases the occurrence of natural hazards around the world. Few geoscientists are trained in effective science communication, and awareness of the formal science communication literature is also low. This can be chall

  7. Geoscience on television

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hut, Rolf; Land-Zandstra, Anne M.; Smeets, Ionica; Stoof, Cathelijne R.


    Geoscience communication is becoming increasingly important as climate change increases the occurrence of natural hazards around the world. Few geoscientists are trained in effective science communication, and awareness of the formal science communication literature is also low. This can be chall

  8. Creating Geoscience Leaders (United States)

    Buskop, J.; Buskop, W.


    The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization recognizes 21 World Heritage in the United States, ten of which have astounding geological features: Wrangell St. Elias National Park, Olympic National Park, Mesa Verde National Park, Chaco Canyon, Glacier National Park, Carlsbad National Park, Mammoth Cave, Great Smokey Mountains National Park, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, and Everglades National Park. Created by a student frustrated with fellow students addicted to smart phones with an extreme lack of interest in the geosciences, one student visited each World Heritage site in the United States and created one e-book chapter per park. Each chapter was created with original photographs, and a geological discovery hunt to encourage teen involvement in preserving remarkable geological sites. Each chapter describes at least one way young adults can get involved with the geosciences, such a cave geology, glaciology, hydrology, and volcanology. The e-book describes one park per chapter, each chapter providing a geological discovery hunt, information on how to get involved with conservation of the parks, geological maps of the parks, parallels between archaeological and geological sites, and how to talk to a ranger. The young author is approaching UNESCO to publish the work as a free e-book to encourage involvement in UNESCO sites and to prove that the geosciences are fun.

  9. Methods to derive lunar DEM from Chang'E-1 laser altimeter data%利用嫦娥一号激光高度计数据制作月球DEM的方法研究

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    邹小端; 刘建军; 任鑫; 王文睿; 牟伶俐; 李春来


    High-resolution digital elevation models (DEMs) based on data from Laser Altimeter (LAM) of Chinese Chang'E-1 mission provide geospatial characterizations of lunar topography. The primary LAM elevation data are two-dimensional topographic profiles. Developing three-dimensional DEMs from these profile data requires the elimination of gross errors and the interpolation of a continuous surface. To detect and remove the error ( pseudo elevation) data from LAM observations the paper suggested an improved linear filter based on empirical formula which adapts the lunar surface feature. And the key parameters for this filter were discussed. In the second part, it tested eight different techniques of spatial interpolation with the filtered data. After comparing and analyzing these interpolation methods by their accuracies, shaded-relief visualizations and topographic profiles, it found the Kriging method worked better than other seven methods in deriving DEM grid. At last, an effective procedure for processing CE-1 elevation data was outlined, and the corresponding parameters were suggested.%本文结合嫦娥一号卫星(CE-1)激光高度计产品数据,研究卫星激光测距数据处理和数字高程模型(DEM)制作的方法.通过滤波实验分析,构造了符合月球地形特征的经验滤波器,并确定了适合LAM数据的滤波窗口大小和地形滤波参数.结合实验结果改进了滤波流程,并对实验区滤波.利用滤波后的数据对八种基本的插值方法进行实验,通过计算插值精度、比较地形晕渲图以及地形剖面细节,评价和比较各方法的插值结果,由此得到结论,克里金插值方法较其他七种方法更适用于月球地形规则格网的生成.最后结合月海和高地两个典型区数据,验证了该套DEM提取方案对不同地形特征区域的适用性.从而,为利用CE-1激光高度计数据开展月球科学研究的科研人员.提供一套行之有效的地形数据处理参考方案.

  10. Writing fiction about geoscience (United States)

    Andrews, S.


    Employment in geology provides excellent preparation for writing mystery novels that teach geoscience. While doing pure research at the USGS under the mentorship of Edwin D. McKee, I learned that the rigors of the scientific method could be applied not only to scientific inquiry but to any search for what is true, including the art of storytelling (the oldest and still most potent form of communication), which in turn supports science. Geoscience constructs narratives of what has happened or what might happen; hence, to communicate my findings, I must present a story. Having developed my writing skills while preparing colleague-reviewed papers (which required that I learn to set my ego aside and survive brutal critiques), the many rounds of edits required to push a novel through a publishing house were a snap. My geoscience training for becoming a novelist continued through private industry, consultancy, and academia. Employment as a petroleum geologist added the pragmatism of bottom-line economics and working to deadlines to my skill set, and nothing could have prepared me for surviving publishers' rejections and mixed reviews better than having to pitch drilling projects to jaded oil patch managers, especially just before lunchtime, when I was all that stood between them and their first martinis of the day. Environmental consulting was an education in ignorant human tricks and the politics of resource consumption gone astray. When teaching at the college level and guest lecturing at primary and secondary schools, my students taught me that nothing was going to stick unless I related the story of geoscience to their lives. When choosing a story form for my novels, I found the mystery apropos because geoscientists are detectives. Like police detectives, we work with fragmentary and often hidden evidence using deductive logic, though our corpses tend to be much, much older or not dead yet. Throughout my career, I learned that negative stereotypes about scientists

  11. Geoscience Information Network (United States)

    Allison, M. L.; Gundersen, L. C.


    Geological surveys in the USA have an estimated 2,000-3,000 databases that represent one of the largest, long- term information resources on the geology of the United States and collectively constitute a national geoscience data "backbone" for research and applications. An NSF-supported workshop in February, 2007, among representatives of the Association of American State Geologists (AASG) and the USGS, recommended that "the nation's geological surveys develop a national geoscience information framework that is distributed, interoperable, uses open source standards and common protocols, respects and acknowledges data ownership, fosters communities of practice to grow, and develops new web services and clients." The AASG and USGS have formally endorsed the workshop recommendations and formed a joint Steering Committee to pursue design and implementation of the Geoscience Information Network (GIN). GIN is taking a modular approach in assembling the network: 1. Agreement on open-source standards and common protocols through the use of Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) standards. 2. A data exchange model utilizing the geoscience mark-up language GeoSciML, an OGC GML-based application. 3. A prototype data discovery tool (National Digital Catalogue - NDC) developing under the National Geological and Geophysical Data Preservation Program run by the USGS. 4. Data integration tools developed or planned by a number of independent projects. A broader NSF-sponsored workshop in March 2007 examined what direction the geoinformatics community in the US should take towards developing a National Geoinformatics System. The final report stated that, "It was clear that developing such a system should involve a partnership between academia, government, and industry that should be closely connected to the efforts of the U. S. Geological Survey and the state geological surveys..." The GIN is collaborating with 1-G Europe, a coalition of 27 European geological surveys in the One

  12. The Role of Geoscience Departments in Preparing Future Geoscience Professionals (United States)

    Ormand, C. J.; MacDonald, H.; Manduca, C. A.


    The Building Strong Geoscience Departments program ran a workshop on the role of geoscience departments in preparing geoscience professionals. Workshop participants asserted that geoscience departments can help support the flow of geoscience graduates into the geoscience workforce by providing students with information about jobs and careers; providing experiences that develop career-oriented knowledge, attitudes and skills; encouraging exploration of options; and supporting students in their job searches. In conjunction with the workshop, we have developed a set of online resources designed to help geoscience departments support their students’ professional development in these ways. The first step toward sending geoscience graduates into related professions is making students aware of the wide variety of career options available in the geosciences and of geoscience employment trends. Successful means of achieving this include making presentations about careers (including job prospects and potential salaries) in geoscience classes, providing examples of practical applications of course content, talking to advisees about their career plans, inviting alumni to present at departmental seminars, participating in institutional career fairs, and publishing a departmental newsletter with information about alumni careers. Courses throughout the curriculum as well as co-curricular experiences can provide experiences that develop skills, knowledge, and attitudes that will be useful for a range of careers. Successful strategies include having an advisory board that offers suggestions about key knowledge and skills to incorporate into the curriculum, providing opportunities for students to do geoscience research, developing internship programs, incorporating professional skills training (such as HazMat training) into the curriculum, and teaching professionalism. Students may also benefit from involvement with the campus career center or from conducting informational

  13. High Density GEOSAT/GM Altimeter Data (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The high density Geosat/GM altimeter data south of 30 S have finally arrived. In addition, ERS-1 has completed more than 6 cycles of its 35-day repeat track. These...

  14. Open Geoscience Database (United States)

    Bashev, A.


    Currently there is an enormous amount of various geoscience databases. Unfortunately the only users of the majority of the databases are their elaborators. There are several reasons for that: incompaitability, specificity of tasks and objects and so on. However the main obstacles for wide usage of geoscience databases are complexity for elaborators and complication for users. The complexity of architecture leads to high costs that block the public access. The complication prevents users from understanding when and how to use the database. Only databases, associated with GoogleMaps don't have these drawbacks, but they could be hardly named "geoscience" Nevertheless, open and simple geoscience database is necessary at least for educational purposes (see our abstract for ESSI20/EOS12). We developed a database and web interface to work with them and now it is accessible at In this database a result is a value of a parameter (no matter which) in a station with a certain position, associated with metadata: the date when the result was obtained; the type of a station (lake, soil etc); the contributor that sent the result. Each contributor has its own profile, that allows to estimate the reliability of the data. The results can be represented on GoogleMaps space image as a point in a certain position, coloured according to the value of the parameter. There are default colour scales and each registered user can create the own scale. The results can be also extracted in *.csv file. For both types of representation one could select the data by date, object type, parameter type, area and contributor. The data are uploaded in *.csv format: Name of the station; Lattitude(dd.dddddd); Longitude(ddd.dddddd); Station type; Parameter type; Parameter value; Date(yyyy-mm-dd). The contributor is recognised while entering. This is the minimal set of features that is required to connect a value of a parameter with a position and see the results. All the complicated data

  15. Accessible Geoscience - Digital Fieldwork (United States)

    Meara, Rhian


    Accessible Geoscience is a developing field of pedagogic research aimed at widening participation in Geography, Earth and Environmental Science (GEES) subjects. These subjects are often less commonly associated with disabilities, ethnic minorities, low income socio-economic groups and females. While advancements and improvements have been made in the inclusivity of these subject areas in recent years, access and participation of disabled students remains low. While universities are legally obligated to provide reasonable adjustments to ensure accessibility, the assumed incompatibility of GEES subjects and disability often deters students from applying to study these courses at a university level. Instead of making reasonable adjustments if and when they are needed, universities should be aiming to develop teaching materials, spaces and opportunities which are accessible to all, which in turn will allow all groups to participate in the GEES subjects. With this in mind, the Swansea Geography Department wish to enhance the accessibility of our undergraduate degree by developing digital field work opportunities. In the first instance, we intend to digitise three afternoon excursions which are run as part of a 1st year undergraduate module. Each of the field trips will be digitized into English- and Welsh-medium formats. In addition, each field trip will be digitized into British Sign Language (BSL) to allow for accessibility for D/deaf and hard of hearing students. Subtitles will also be made available in each version. While the main focus of this work is to provide accessible fieldwork opportunities for students with disabilities, this work also has additional benefits. Students within the Geography Department will be able to revisit the field trips, to revise and complete associated coursework. The use of digitized field work should not replace opportunities for real field work, but its use by the full cohort of students will begin to "normalize" accessible field

  16. Examining sexism in the geosciences (United States)

    Simarski, Lynn Teo

    Do women geoscientists face worse obstacles because of their gender than women in other sciences? A recent survey by the Committee on Professionals in Science and Technology showed that women with geoscience bachelor's degrees start off at only 68% of their male colleagues' salaries, much lower than women in biology (92%), engineering (102%), chemistry (103%), and physics (111%).Women still lag behind men in geoscience degrees as well. In 1990, women received about one-third of geoscience bachelor's degrees, one-quarter of masters, and about one-fifth of Ph.D.'s, reports the American Geological Institute. In the sciences overall, women received about half of bachelor's degrees, 42% of masters, and about a third of Ph.D.'s in 1989, according to the National Research Council.

  17. GIS in geoscience education- geomorphometric study

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Mahender, K.; Yogita, K.; Kunte, P.D.

    The educational institutions around the world have realised the possibility of using GIS in geosciences teaching along with in many other subjects. GIS is been used in a large number of geoscience applications viz. mapping, mineral and petroleum...

  18. Tracking the Health of the Geoscience Workforce (United States)

    Gonzales, L. M.; Keane, C. M.; Martinez, C. M.


    Increased demands for resources and environmental activities, relative declines in college students entering technical fields, and expectations of growth commensurate with society as a whole challenge the competitiveness of the U.S. geoscience workforce. Because of prior business cycles, more than 50% of the workforce needed in natural resource industries in 10 years is currently not in the workforce. This issue is even more acute in government at all levels and in academic institutions. Here, we present a snapshot of the current status of the geoscience profession that spans geoscientists in training to geoscience professionals in government, industry, and academia to understand the disparity between the supply of and demand for geoscientists. Since 1996, only 1% of high school SAT test takers plan to major in geosciences at college. Although the total number of geoscience degrees granted at community colleges have increased by 9% since 1996 , the number of geoscience undergraduate degrees has decreased by 7%. The number of geoscience master's and doctoral degrees have increased 4% and 14% respectively in the same time period. However, by 2005, 68 geoscience departments were consolidated or closed in U.S. universities. Students who graduate with geoscience degrees command competitive salaries. Recent bachelors geoscience graduates earned an average salary of 31,366, whereas recent master's recipients earned an average of 81,300. New geosciences doctorates commanded an average salary of 72,600. Also, fFederal funding for geoscience research has increase steadily from 485 million in 1970 to $3.5 billion in 2005. Economic indicators suggest continued growth in geoscience commodity output and in market capitalization of geoscience industries. Additionally, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 19% increase in the number of geoscience jobs from 2006 to 2016. Despite the increased demand for geoscientists and increase in federal funding of geoscience research

  19. Developing Geoscience Students' Quantitative Skills (United States)

    Manduca, C. A.; Hancock, G. S.


    Sophisticated quantitative skills are an essential tool for the professional geoscientist. While students learn many of these sophisticated skills in graduate school, it is increasingly important that they have a strong grounding in quantitative geoscience as undergraduates. Faculty have developed many strong approaches to teaching these skills in a wide variety of geoscience courses. A workshop in June 2005 brought together eight faculty teaching surface processes and climate change to discuss and refine activities they use and to publish them on the Teaching Quantitative Skills in the Geosciences website ( for broader use. Workshop participants in consultation with two mathematics faculty who have expertise in math education developed six review criteria to guide discussion: 1) Are the quantitative and geologic goals central and important? (e.g. problem solving, mastery of important skill, modeling, relating theory to observation); 2) Does the activity lead to better problem solving? 3) Are the quantitative skills integrated with geoscience concepts in a way that makes sense for the learning environment and supports learning both quantitative skills and geoscience? 4) Does the methodology support learning? (e.g. motivate and engage students; use multiple representations, incorporate reflection, discussion and synthesis) 5) Are the materials complete and helpful to students? 6) How well has the activity worked when used? Workshop participants found that reviewing each others activities was very productive because they thought about new ways to teach and the experience of reviewing helped them think about their own activity from a different point of view. The review criteria focused their thinking about the activity and would be equally helpful in the design of a new activity. We invite a broad international discussion of the criteria( Teaching activities can be found on the

  20. Summary outline of DOE geoscience and geoscience - related research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The Office of Basic Energy Sciences (OBES) supports long-range, basic research in those areas of the geosciences which are relevant to the nation's energy needs. The objective of the Geoscience program is to develop a quantitative and predictive understanding of geological, geophysical and geochemical structures and processes in the solid earth and in solar-terrestrial relationships. This understanding is to assure an effective knowledge base for energy resource recognition, evaluation and utilization in an environmentally acceptable manner. The work is carried out primarily in DOE laboratories and in universities, although some is conducted by other federal agencies and by the National Academy of Sciences. Principal areas of interest include: Geology, Geophysics, and Earth Dynamics; Geochemistry; Energy Resource Recognition, Evaluation and Utilization; Hydrologic and Marine Sciences; and Solar-Terrestrial/Atmospheric Interactions.

  1. A new approach to lightweight radar altimeters (United States)

    Levanon, N.; Stremler, F. G.; Suomi, V. E.


    Test results and key principles are given for a radar altimeter designed for meteorological balloons. The instrument, which weighs 160 g and consumes 0.7 W, will fill a gap in meteorological sensing using balloons - an area where pressure altitude was formerly the prevailing reference. The instrument is basically a delay-lock radar utilizing a superregenerative RF stage. Long-term absolute accuracy of plus or minus 10 m and short-term stability of better than 2 m rms were measured at altitudes of 20 km.

  2. Geoconservation as an emerging geoscience


    Henriques, Maria Helena; Reis, R. Pena dos; Brilha, J. B.; Mota, Teresa


    The main purpose of geoconservation is theconservation of geosites as basic units of the geological heritage through the implementation of specific inventory,evaluation, conservation, valuation and monitoring proce-dures. In this paper, geoconservation is characterised as anemergent geoscience within the Earth and Space Sciences where its scope and methods, as well as production andvalidation of knowledge can be recognised–thus definingBasic Geoconservation–, interrelations with other earth s...

  3. Quantitative Literacy: Geosciences and Beyond (United States)

    Richardson, R. M.; McCallum, W. G.


    Quantitative literacy seems like such a natural for the geosciences, right? The field has gone from its origin as a largely descriptive discipline to one where it is hard to imagine failing to bring a full range of mathematical tools to the solution of geological problems. Although there are many definitions of quantitative literacy, we have proposed one that is analogous to the UNESCO definition of conventional literacy: "A quantitatively literate person is one who, with understanding, can both read and represent quantitative information arising in his or her everyday life." Central to this definition is the concept that a curriculum for quantitative literacy must go beyond the basic ability to "read and write" mathematics and develop conceptual understanding. It is also critical that a curriculum for quantitative literacy be engaged with a context, be it everyday life, humanities, geoscience or other sciences, business, engineering, or technology. Thus, our definition works both within and outside the sciences. What role do geoscience faculty have in helping students become quantitatively literate? Is it our role, or that of the mathematicians? How does quantitative literacy vary between different scientific and engineering fields? Or between science and nonscience fields? We will argue that successful quantitative literacy curricula must be an across-the-curriculum responsibility. We will share examples of how quantitative literacy can be developed within a geoscience curriculum, beginning with introductory classes for nonmajors (using the Mauna Loa CO2 data set) through graduate courses in inverse theory (using singular value decomposition). We will highlight six approaches to across-the curriculum efforts from national models: collaboration between mathematics and other faculty; gateway testing; intensive instructional support; workshops for nonmathematics faculty; quantitative reasoning requirement; and individual initiative by nonmathematics faculty.

  4. Spatiotemporal Thinking in the Geosciences (United States)

    Shipley, T. F.; Manduca, C. A.; Ormand, C. J.; Tikoff, B.


    Reasoning about spatial relations is a critical skill for geoscientists. Within the geosciences different disciplines may reason about different sorts of relationships. These relationships may span vastly different spatial and temporal scales (from the spatial alignment in atoms in crystals to the changes in the shape of plates). As part of work in a research center on spatial thinking in STEM education, we have been working to classify the spatial skills required in geology, develop tests for each spatial skill, and develop the cognitive science tools to promote the critical spatial reasoning skills. Research in psychology, neurology and linguistics supports a broad classification of spatial skills along two dimensions: one versus many objects (which roughly translates to object- focused and navigation focused skills) and static versus dynamic spatial relations. The talk will focus on the interaction of space and time in spatial cognition in the geosciences. We are working to develop measures of skill in visualizing spatiotemporal changes. A new test developed to measure visualization of brittle deformations will be presented. This is a skill that has not been clearly recognized in the cognitive science research domain and thus illustrates the value of interdisciplinary work that combines geosciences with cognitive sciences. Teaching spatiotemporal concepts can be challenging. Recent theoretical work suggests analogical reasoning can be a powerful tool to aid student learning to reason about temporal relations using spatial skills. Recent work in our lab has found that progressive alignment of spatial and temporal scales promotes accurate reasoning about temporal relations at geological time scales.

  5. Designing a road map for geoscience workflows (United States)

    Duffy, Christopher; Gil, Yolanda; Deelman, Ewa; Marru, Suresh; Pierce, Marlon; Demir, Ibrahim; Wiener, Gerry


    Advances in geoscience research and discovery are fundamentally tied to data and computation, but formal strategies for managing the diversity of models and data resources in the Earth sciences have not yet been resolved or fully appreciated. The U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) EarthCube initiative (, which aims to support community-guided cyberinfrastructure to integrate data and information across the geosciences, recently funded four community development activities: Geoscience Workflows; Semantics and Ontologies; Data Discovery, Mining, and Integration; and Governance. The Geoscience Workflows working group, with broad participation from the geosciences, cyberinfrastructure, and other relevant communities, is formulating a workflows road map ( The Geoscience Workflows team coordinates with each of the other community development groups given their direct relevance to workflows. Semantics and ontologies are mechanisms for describing workflows and the data they process.

  6. Geoscience terminology for data interchange (United States)

    Richard, Stephen


    Workgroups formed by the Commission for the Management and Application of Geoscience Information (CGI), a Commission of the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS) have been developing vocabulary resources to promote geoscience information exchange. The Multilingual Thesaurus Working Group (MLT) was formed in 2003 to continue work of the Multhes working group of the 1990s. The Concept Definition Task Group was formed by the CGI Interoperability Working Group in 2007 to develop concept vocabularies for populating GeoSciML interchange documents. The CGI council has determined that it will be more efficient and effective to merge the efforts of these groups and has formed a new Geoscience Terminology Working Group (GTWG, Each GTWG member will be expected to shepherd one or more vocabularies. There are currently 31 vocabularies in the CGI portfolio, developed for GeoSciML interchange documents (e.g. see 201202/). Vocabulary development in both groups has been conducted first by gathering candidate terms in Excel spreadsheets because these are easy for text editing and review. When the vocabulary is mature, it is migrated into SKOS, an RDF application for encoding concepts with identifiers, definitions, source information, standard thesaurus type relationships, and language-localized labels. Currently there are 30 vocabularies still required for GeoSciML v3, and 38 proposed vocabularies for use with EarthResourceML ( In addition, a project to develop a lithogenetic map unit vocabulary to use for regional geologic map integration using OGC web map services is underway. Considerable work remains to be done to integrate multilingual geoscience terms developed by the MLT Working Group with existing CGI vocabularies to provide multilingual support, and to make the thesaurus compiled by the

  7. Mississippi State University’s Geoscience Education and Geocognition Research Program in the Department of Geosciences (United States)

    McNeal, K.; Clary, R. M.; Sherman-Morris, K.; Kirkland, B.; Gillham, D.; Moe-Hoffman, A.


    The Department of Geosciences at Mississippi State University offers both a MS in Geosciences and a PhD in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, with the possibility of a concentration in geoscience education. The department offers broad research opportunities in the geoscience sub-disciplines of Geology, Meteorology, GIS, and Geography. Geoscience education research is one of the research themes emphasized in the department and focuses on geoscience learning in traditional, online, field-based, and informal educational environments. Approximately 20% of the faculty are actively conducting research in geoscience education and incorporate both qualitative and quantitative research approaches in areas including: the investigation of effective teaching strategies, the implementation and evaluation of geoscience teacher professional development programs and diversity enhancement programs, the study of the history and philosophy of science in geoscience teaching, the exploration of student cognition and understanding of complex and dynamic earth systems, and the investigation of using visualizations to enhance learning in the geosciences. The inception and continued support of an active geoscience education research program is derived from a variety of factors including: (1) the development of the on-line Teachers in Geosciences (TIG) Masters Degree Program which is the primary teaching appointment for the majority of the faculty conducting geoscience education research, (2) the securing of federal funds to support geoscience education research, (3) the publication of high-quality peer-reviewed research papers in both geoscience education and traditional research domains, (4) the active contribution of the geoscience education faculty in their traditional research domains, (5) a faculty that greatly values teaching and recognizes the research area of geoscience education as a sub-domain of the broader geoscience disciplines, (6) the involvement of university faculty, outside

  8. Translational Geoscience: Converting Geoscience Innovation into Societal Impacts (United States)

    Schiffries, C. M.


    Translational geoscience — which involves the conversion of geoscience discovery into societal, economic, and environmental impacts — has significant potential to generate large benefits but has received little systematic attention or resources. In contrast, translational medicine — which focuses on the conversion of scientific discovery into health improvement — has grown enormously in the past decade and provides useful models for other fields. Elias Zerhouni [1] developed a "new vision" for translational science to "ensure that extraordinary scientific advances of the past decade will be rapidly captured, translated, and disseminated for the benefit of all Americans." According to Francis Collins, "Opportunities to advance the discipline of translational science have never been better. We must move forward now. Science and society cannot afford to do otherwise." On 9 July 2015, the White House issued a memorandum directing U.S. federal agencies to focus on translating research into broader impacts, including commercial products and decision-making frameworks [3]. Natural hazards mitigation is one of many geoscience topics that would benefit from advances in translational science. This paper demonstrates that natural hazards mitigation can benefit from advances in translational science that address such topics as improving emergency preparedness, communicating life-saving information to government officials and citizens, explaining false positives and false negatives, working with multiple stakeholders and organizations across all sectors of the economy and all levels of government, and collaborating across a broad range of disciplines. [1] Zerhouni, EA (2005) New England Journal of Medicine 353(15):1621-1623. [2] Collins, FS (2011) Science Translational Medicine 3(90):1-6. [3] Donovan, S and Holdren, JP (2015) Multi-agency science and technology priorities for the FY 2017 budget. Executive Office of the President of the United States, 5 pp.

  9. Testing relativity again, laser, laser, laser, laser

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Einstein, A.


    laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser, laser,

  10. A Geoscience Workforce Model for Non-Geoscience and Non-Traditional STEM Students (United States)

    Liou-Mark, J.; Blake, R.; Norouzi, H.; Vladutescu, D. V.; Yuen-Lau, L.


    The Summit on the Future of Geoscience Undergraduate Education has recently identified key professional skills, competencies, and conceptual understanding necessary in the development of undergraduate geoscience students (American Geosciences Institute, 2015). Through a comprehensive study involving a diverse range of the geoscience academic and employer community, the following professional scientist skills were rated highly important: 1) critical thinking/problem solving skills; 2) effective communication; 3) ability to access and integrate information; 4) strong quantitative skills; and 5) ability to work in interdisciplinary/cross cultural teams. Based on the findings of the study above, the New York City College of Technology (City Tech) has created a one-year intensive training program that focusses on the development of technical and non-technical geoscience skills for non-geoscience, non-traditional STEM students. Although City Tech does not offer geoscience degrees, the primary goal of the program is to create an unconventional pathway for under-represented minority STEM students to enter, participate, and compete in the geoscience workforce. The selected cohort of STEM students engage in year-round activities that include a geoscience course, enrichment training workshops, networking sessions, leadership development, research experiences, and summer internships at federal, local, and private geoscience facilities. These carefully designed programmatic elements provide both the geoscience knowledge and the non-technical professional skills that are essential for the geoscience workforce. Moreover, by executing this alternate, robust geoscience workforce model that attracts and prepares underrepresented minorities for geoscience careers, this unique pathway opens another corridor that helps to ameliorate the dire plight of the geoscience workforce shortage. This project is supported by NSF IUSE GEOPATH Grant # 1540721.

  11. International Convergence on Geoscience Cyberinfrastructure (United States)

    Allison, M. L.; Atkinson, R.; Arctur, D. K.; Cox, S.; Jackson, I.; Nativi, S.; Wyborn, L. A.


    There is growing international consensus on addressing the challenges to cyber(e)-infrastructure for the geosciences. These challenges include: Creating common standards and protocols; Engaging the vast number of distributed data resources; Establishing practices for recognition of and respect for intellectual property; Developing simple data and resource discovery and access systems; Building mechanisms to encourage development of web service tools and workflows for data analysis; Brokering the diverse disciplinary service buses; Creating sustainable business models for maintenance and evolution of information resources; Integrating the data management life-cycle into the practice of science. Efforts around the world are converging towards de facto creation of an integrated global digital data network for the geosciences based on common standards and protocols for data discovery and access, and a shared vision of distributed, web-based, open source interoperable data access and integration. Commonalities include use of Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) and ISO specifications and standardized data interchange mechanisms. For multidisciplinarity, mediation, adaptation, and profiling services have been successfully introduced to leverage the geosciences standards which are commonly used by the different geoscience communities -introducing a brokering approach which extends the basic SOA archetype. Principal challenges are less technical than cultural, social, and organizational. Before we can make data interoperable, we must make people interoperable. These challenges are being met by increased coordination of development activities (technical, organizational, social) among leaders and practitioners in national and international efforts across the geosciences to foster commonalities across disparate networks. In doing so, we will 1) leverage and share resources, and developments, 2) facilitate and enhance emerging technical and structural advances, 3) promote

  12. Study on Atmospheric Refraction Delay Correction for Satellite Laser Altimeter System%星载激光测高系统的大气折射延迟改正模型研究

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李松; 肖建明; 马跃; 周辉; 郭想


    星载激光测高仪通过测量从卫星平台发射的激光脉冲在卫星与地面激光脚点之间的渡越时间计算两者之间的距离.由于光束经过大气层时发生的折射,导致卫星激光测高系统典型的与大气延迟相关的测距误差在数米量级.讨论了大气折射延迟修正的理论与方法,分析比较了各种大气折射率模型,以全球首个对地观测星载激光测高仪系统GLAS系统为例,给出了各种折射率模型的计算偏差,发现在常见温度和湿度范围内Owens375模型是一种精度较高的简化折射率模型;计算了GLAS系统高度角偏离天顶方向不超过10°的情况下,使用简单映射函数与CfA2.2映射函数模型的值,发现其差异不超过0.5 mm.%Satellite laser altimetry system(SLR) measures the distance between the satellite and the surface of the earth by figuring out the transit time of laser pulse. The characteristics ranging error is few meters for a SLR because of the atmospheric refraction delay. The theory and method of atmospheric refraction delay correction are discussed. The various models of atmospheric refraction are analyzed and compared. The atmospheric refraction delay based on different models by using GLAS's parameters is calculated. It shows that the model of Owens 375 is with great precise and simplified in most temperature and humidity conditions. The refraction delay corrections in the condition that altitude angle within 10?are calculated by using a simplified mapping function and CfA2. 2, and diffrences between them is only 0. 5 mm.

  13. Summaries of physical research in the geosciences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The Department of Energy supports research in the geosciences in order to provide a sound foundation of fundamental knowledge in those areas of the geosciences which are germane to the Department of Energy's many missions. The Division of Engineering and Geosciences, part of the Office of Basic Energy Sciences of the Office of Energy Research, supports the Geosciences Research Program. The participants in this program include Department of Energy laboratories, industry, universities, and other governmental agencies. The summaries in this document, prepared by the investigators, briefly describe the scope of the individual programs. The Geosciences Research Program includes research in geology, petrology, geophysics, geochemistry, solar physics, solar-terrestrial relationships, aeronomy, seismology, and natural resource modeling and analysis, including their various subdivisions and interdisciplinary areas. All such research is related either directly or indirectly to the Department of Energy's long-range technological needs.

  14. Geoscience indexing at petroleum abstracts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Finnegan, M.A.


    Geoscience literature received by Petroleum Abstracts Information System is indexed by Scientist with field experience. The indexing consists of relating concepts produced by the author to a controlled vocabulary used at Petroleum Abstracts. The primary emphasis of selection of the literature at Petroleum Abstracts is petroleum-related, but not petroleum restricted. Geoscience literature indexed at Petroleum Abstracts comprises the following subjects: Geology, Geochemistry, Geophysics, and Mineral Commodities. The depth of indexing attributed to each article does in fact depend on the amount of petroleum-related subject matter in the article. Once the indexing is completed, the abstract is then cut to approximately 150 words. The scientist who indexes at Petroleum Abstracts is not expected to know or remember every detail or concept ever published. But he or she is expected to be able to go to an atlas, dictionary, or any other reference material available and apply the concepts to a controlled vocabulary. This is somewhat of a restriction on scientists, but it is the only way to maintain any kind of consistency in the indexing. Successful searching of the Petroleum Abstracts Information System can be accomplished with an understanding of the indexing strategy and the importance and necessity of referencing the thesauri controlled vocabulary. It may be more time-consuming, but will certainly be more accurate in the retrieval of the information.

  15. Introducing Undergraduates to Environmental Geoscience (United States)

    Stewart, R.


    We have developed an introductory course in environmental geoscience for undergraduates that draws on many years of experience in improving the teaching of geoscience. The course is recognized as an exemplary college course for Advanced Placement high-school courses in environmental science. To gain student's attention, we organized the course around local, regional, and global problems including global change, global warming, groundwater resources, land degradation, regional air quality, ozone depletion, and coastal issues. Homework assignments lead students to understand local problems, scientific data, and how personal actions influence the environment. Although science is the center of the course, we show students how science and public policy differ, and how they interact. All this was not easy. How can any one person learn the material? What to do when an extensive review of possible texts leads to a realization that none are very useful? Come watch over our shoulder as we show you how faculty from four departments developed a successful interdisciplinary course at a large public university.

  16. The Geoscience Internet of Things (United States)

    Lehnert, K.; Klump, J.


    Internet of Things is a term that refers to "uniquely identifiable objects (things) and their virtual representations in an Internet-like structure" (Wikipedia). We here use the term to describe new and innovative ways to integrate physical samples in the Earth Sciences into the emerging digital infrastructures that are developed to support research and education in the Geosciences. Many Earth Science data are acquired on solid earth samples through observations and experiments conducted in the field or in the lab. The application and long-term utility of sample-based data for science is critically dependent on (a) the availability of information (metadata) about the samples such as geographical location where the sample was collected, time of sampling, sampling method, etc. (b) links between the different data types available for individual samples that are dispersed in the literature and in digital data repositories, and (c) access to the samples themselves. Neither of these requirements could be achieved in the past due to incomplete documentation of samples in publications, use of ambiguous sample names, and the lack of a central catalog that allows researchers to find a sample's archiving location. New internet-based capabilities have been developed over the past few years for the registration and unique identification of samples that make it possible to overcome these problems. Services for the registration and unique identification of samples are provided by the System for Earth Sample Registration SESAR ( SESAR developed the International Geo Sample Number, or IGSN, as a unique identifier for samples and specimens collected from our natural environment. Since December 2011, the IGSN is governed by an international organization, the IGSN eV (, which endorses and promotes an internationally unified approach for registration and discovery of physical specimens in the Geoscience community and is establishing a new modular and

  17. Frontier geoscience program in action

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Davies, G.R.; Nassichuk, W.W.

    The authors have recently discovered oil shales deposited in a Carboniferous lake during the earliest stages of formation of the Sverdrup rift basins in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. The Geological Survey of Canada's Frontier Geoscience Program is designed to accelerate the study of sedimentary basins in Canada's frontier areas in anticipation of future exploration for oil and gas. Two specfic FGP objectives influenced the ISPG oil-shale project: to describe the tectonic and sedimentary evolution of oil- and gas-bearing basins, and to elucidate the processes governing generation, accumulation, and preservation of hydrocarbon resources. This article illustrates the significance of lacustrine sediments as petroleum source rocks and demonstrates that lacustrine sediments are commonly the oldest sequences deposited in evolving rift basins. 8 figs.

  18. Precise topography assessment of Lop Nur Lake Basin using GLAS altimeter (United States)

    Wang, Longfei; Gong, Huaze; Shao, Yun


    Lop Nur is a dried-up salt lake lying in the eastern part of Tarim basin, which used to be the second largest lagon in China. The "ear" rings in Lop Nur attract many interests and are regarded as the lake shorelines during its recession. The topography of the lake basin is important in understanding the formation of the "ear" rings. In this paper, elevation data along three transects obtained from laser altimeter were taken as the basic material of the topography in Lop Nur. Elevation data of laser altimeter show great consistency between adjacent passes. Orthometric height (OH) derived from altimetry data and the geoid model are used to analyze the elevation characteristic along "ear" rings. The result shows the "ear" rings are basically identical in elevation, supporting the statement that "ear" rings are former lake shorelines. A discrepancy of approximately 1 meter in OH is observed on the same "ear" ring, lower in the north and higher in the south, which is found for the first time. Possible explanations could be deformation of ground surface due to earthquake or tectonic movement after the "ear" rings are formed, or tilt of water surface due to wind stress or lake current during the formation of the rings.

  19. FPGA Sequencer for Radar Altimeter Applications (United States)

    Berkun, Andrew C.; Pollard, Brian D.; Chen, Curtis W.


    A sequencer for a radar altimeter provides accurate attitude information for a reliable soft landing of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL). This is a field-programmable- gate-array (FPGA)-only implementation. A table loaded externally into the FPGA controls timing, processing, and decision structures. Radar is memory-less and does not use previous acquisitions to assist in the current acquisition. All cycles complete in exactly 50 milliseconds, regardless of range or whether a target was found. A RAM (random access memory) within the FPGA holds instructions for up to 15 sets. For each set, timing is run, echoes are processed, and a comparison is made. If a target is seen, more detailed processing is run on that set. If no target is seen, the next set is tried. When all sets have been run, the FPGA terminates and waits for the next 50-millisecond event. This setup simplifies testing and improves reliability. A single vertex chip does the work of an entire assembly. Output products require minor processing to become range and velocity. This technology is the heart of the Terminal Descent Sensor, which is an integral part of the Entry Decent and Landing system for MSL. In addition, it is a strong candidate for manned landings on Mars or the Moon.

  20. Development of Software for a Lidar-Altimeter Processor (United States)

    Rosenberg, Jacob S.; Trujillo, Carlos


    A report describes the development of software for a digital processor that operates in conjunction with a finite-impulse-response (FIR) chip in a spaceborne lidar altimeter. Processing is started by a laser-fire interrupt signal that is repeated at intervals of 25 ms. For the purpose of discriminating between returns from the ground and returns from such things as trees, buildings, and clouds, the software is required to scan digitized lidar-return data in reverse of the acquisition sequence in order to distinguish the last return pulse from within a commanded ground-return range window. The digitized waveform information within this range window is filtered through 6 matched filters, in the hardware electronics, in order to maximize the probability of finding echoes from sloped or rough terrain and minimize the probability of selecting cloud returns. From the data falling past the end of the range window, there is obtained a noise baseline that is used to calculate a threshold value for each filter. The data from each filter is analyzed by a complex weighting scheme and the filter with the greatest weight is selected. A region around the peak of the ground return pulse associated with the selected filter is placed in telemetry, as well as information on its location, height, and other characteristics. The software requires many uplinked parameters as input. Included in the report is a discussion of major software-development problems posed by the design of the FIR chip and the need for the software to complete its process within 20 ms to fit within the overall 25-ms cycle.

  1. Effectiveness of Geosciences Exploration Summer Program (GeoX) for Increasing Awareness and Knowledge of Geosciences

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Chris Houser; Sonia Garcia; Janet Torres


      Summer research experiences are an increasingly popular means of increasing awareness of, and developing interest in, the geosciences and other science, technology, engineering, and math programs...

  2. Striving to Diversify the Geosciences Workforce (United States)

    Velasco, Aaron A.; Jaurrieta de Velasco, Edith


    The geosciences continue to lag far behind other sciences in recruiting and retaining diverse populations [Czujko and Henley, 2003; Huntoon and Lane, 2007]. As a result, the U.S. capacity for preparedness in natural geohazards mitigation, natural resource management and development, national security, and geosciences education is being undermined and is losing its competitive edge in the global market. Two key populations must be considered as the United States looks to build the future geosciences workforce and optimize worker productivity: the nation's youth and its growing underrepresented minority (URM) community. By focusing on both of these demographics, the United States can address the identified shortage of high-quality candidates for knowledge-intensive jobs in the geosciences, helping to develop the innovative enterprises that lead to discovery and new technology [see National Research Council (NRCd), 2007].

  3. Summaries of physical research in the geosciences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The Department of Energy supports research in the geosciences in order to provide a sound underlay of fundamental knowledge in those areas of the earth, atmospheric, and solar/terrestrial sciences that relate to the Department of Energy's many missions. The Division of Engineering, Mathematical and Geosciences, which is a part of the Office of Basic Energy Sciences and comes under the Director of Energy Research, supports under its Geosciences program major Department of Energy laboratories, industry, universities and other governmental agencies. The summaries in this document, prepared by the investigators, describe the overall scope of the individual programs and details of the research performed during 1979-1980. The Geoscience program includes research in geology, petrology, geophysics, geochemistry, hydrology, solar-terrestrial relationships, aeronomy, seismology and natural resource analysis, including the various subdivisions and interdisciplinary areas. All such research is related to the Department's technological needs, either directly or indirectly.

  4. Summaries of FY 1993 geosciences research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The Department of Energy supports research in the geosciences in order to provide a sound foundation of fundamental knowledge in those areas of the geosciences that are germane to the DOE`s many missions. The Geosciences Research Program is supported by the Office of Energy Research. The participants in this program include DOE laboratories, academic institutions, and other governmental agencies. These activities are formalized by a contract or grant between the DOE and the organization performing the work, providing funds for salaries, equipment, research materials, and overhead. The summaries in this document, prepared by the investigators, describe the scope of the individual programs. The Geosciences Research Program includes research in geophysics, geochemistry, resource evaluation, solar-terrestrial interactions, and their subdivisions including earth dynamics, properties of earth materials, rock mechanics, underground imaging, rock-fluid interactions, continental scientific drilling, geochemical transport, solar-atmospheric physics, and modeling, with emphasis on the interdisciplinary areas.

  5. Illuminate Knowledge Elements in Geoscience Literature (United States)

    Ma, X.; Zheng, J. G.; Wang, H.; Fox, P. A.


    There are numerous dark data hidden in geoscience literature. Efficient retrieval and reuse of those data will greatly benefit geoscience researches of nowadays. Among the works of data rescue, a topic of interest is illuminating the knowledge framework, i.e. entities and relationships, embedded in documents. Entity recognition and linking have received extensive attention in news and social media analysis, as well as in bioinformatics. In the domain of geoscience, however, such works are limited. We will present our work on how to use knowledge bases on the Web, such as ontologies and vocabularies, to facilitate entity recognition and linking in geoscience literature. The work deploys an un-supervised collective inference approach [1] to link entity mentions in unstructured texts to a knowledge base, which leverages the meaningful information and structures in ontologies and vocabularies for similarity computation and entity ranking. Our work is still in the initial stage towards the detection of knowledge frameworks in literature, and we have been collecting geoscience ontologies and vocabularies in order to build a comprehensive geoscience knowledge base [2]. We hope the work will initiate new ideas and collaborations on dark data rescue, as well as on the synthesis of data and knowledge from geoscience literature. References: 1. Zheng, J., Howsmon, D., Zhang, B., Hahn, J., McGuinness, D.L., Hendler, J., and Ji, H. 2014. Entity linking for biomedical literature. In Proceedings of ACM 8th International Workshop on Data and Text Mining in Bioinformatics, Shanghai, China. 2. Ma, X. Zheng, J., 2015. Linking geoscience entity mentions to the Web of Data. ESIP 2015 Summer Meeting, Pacific Grove, CA.

  6. Development of the Laser Altimeter (LIDAR) for Hayabusa2 (United States)

    Mizuno, T.; Kase, T.; Shiina, T.; Mita, M.; Namiki, N.; Senshu, H.; Yamada, R.; Noda, H.; Kunimori, H.; Hirata, N.; Terui, F.; Mimasu, Y.


    Hayabusa2 was launched on 3 December 2014 on an H-IIA launch vehicle from the Tanegashima Space Center, and is, at the time of writing, cruising toward asteroid 162137 Ryugu (1999JU3). After reaching the asteroid, it will stay for about 1.5 years to observe the asteroid and collect surface material samples.

  7. Defining the Geoscience Community through a Quantitative Perspective (United States)

    Wilson, C. E.; Keane, C. M.


    The American Geosciences Institute's (AGI) Geoscience Workforce Program collects and analyzes data pertaining to the changes in the supply, demand, and training of the geoscience workforce. These data cover the areas of change in the education of future geoscientists from K-12 through graduate school, the transition of geoscience graduates into early-career geoscientists, the dynamics of the current geoscience workforce, and the future predictions of the changes in the availability of geoscience jobs. The Workforce Program also considers economic changes in the United States and globally that can affect the supply and demand of the geoscience workforce. In order to have an informed discussion defining the modern geoscience community, it is essential to understand the current dynamics within the geoscience community and workforce. This presentation will provide a data-driven outlook of the current status of the geosciences in the workforce and within higher education using data collected by AGI, federal agencies and other stakeholder organizations. The data presented will highlight the various industries, including those industries with non-traditional geoscience jobs, the skills development of geoscience majors, and the application of these skills within the various industries in the workforce. This quantitative overview lays the foundation for further discussions related to tracking and understanding the current geoscience community in the United States, as well as establishes a baseline for global geoscience workforce comparisons in the future.

  8. Further development of an improved altimeter wind speed algorithm (United States)

    Chelton, Dudley B.; Wentz, Frank J.


    A previous altimeter wind speed retrieval algorithm was developed on the basis of wind speeds in the limited range from about 4 to 14 m/s. In this paper, a new approach which gives a wind speed model function applicable over the range 0 to 21 m/s is used. The method is based on comparing 50 km along-track averages of the altimeter normalized radar cross section measurements with neighboring off-nadir scatterometer wind speed measurements. The scatterometer winds are constructed from 100 km binned measurements of radar cross section and are located approximately 200 km from the satellite subtrack. The new model function agrees very well with earlier versions up to wind speeds of 14 m/s, but differs significantly at higher wind speeds. The relevance of these results to the Geosat altimeter launched in March 1985 is discussed.

  9. Geoscience on television: a review of science communication literature in the context of geosciences (United States)

    Hut, Rolf; Land-Zandstra, Anne M.; Smeets, Ionica; Stoof, Cathelijne R.


    Geoscience communication is becoming increasingly important as climate change increases the occurrence of natural hazards around the world. Few geoscientists are trained in effective science communication, and awareness of the formal science communication literature is also low. This can be challenging when interacting with journalists on a powerful medium like TV. To provide geoscience communicators with background knowledge on effective science communication on television, we reviewed relevant theory in the context of geosciences and discuss six major themes: scientist motivation, target audience, narratives and storytelling, jargon and information transfer, relationship between scientists and journalists, and stereotypes of scientists on TV. We illustrate each theme with a case study of geosciences on TV and discuss relevant science communication literature. We then highlight how this literature applies to the geosciences and identify knowledge gaps related to science communication in the geosciences. As TV offers a unique opportunity to reach many viewers, we hope this review can not only positively contribute to effective geoscience communication but also to the wider geoscience debate in society.

  10. NASA Ocean Altimeter Pathfinder Project. Report 1; Data Processing Handbook (United States)

    Koblinsky, C. J.; Beckley, Brian D.; Ray, Richard D.; Wang, Yan-Ming; Tsaoussi, Lucia; Brenner, Anita; Williamson, Ron


    The NOAA/NASA Pathfinder program was created by the Earth Observing System (EOS) Program Office to determine how satellite-based data sets can be processed and used to study global change. The data sets are designed to be long time-sedes data processed with stable calibration and community consensus algorithms to better assist the research community. The Ocean Altimeter Pathfinder Project involves the reprocessing of all altimeter observations with a consistent set of improved algorithms, based on the results from TOPEX/POSEIDON (T/P), into easy-to-use data sets for the oceanographic community for climate research. This report describes the processing schemes used to produce a consistent data set and two of the products derived f rom these data. Other reports have been produced that: a) describe the validation of these data sets against tide gauge measurements and b) evaluate the statistical properties of the data that are relevant to climate change. The use of satellite altimetry for earth observations was proposed in the early 1960s. The first successful space based radar altimeter experiment was flown on SkyLab in 1974. The first successful satellite radar altimeter was flown aboard the Geos-3 spacecraft between 1975 and 1978. While a useful data set was collected from this mission for geophysical studies, the noise in the radar measured and incomplete global coverage precluded ft from inclusion in the Ocean Altimeter Pathfinder program. This program initiated its analysis with the Seasat mission, which was the first satellite radar altimeter flown for oceanography.

  11. LIME: 3D visualisation and interpretation of virtual geoscience models (United States)

    Buckley, Simon; Ringdal, Kari; Dolva, Benjamin; Naumann, Nicole; Kurz, Tobias


    Three-dimensional and photorealistic acquisition of surface topography, using methods such as laser scanning and photogrammetry, has become widespread across the geosciences over the last decade. With recent innovations in photogrammetric processing software, robust and automated data capture hardware, and novel sensor platforms, including unmanned aerial vehicles, obtaining 3D representations of exposed topography has never been easier. In addition to 3D datasets, fusion of surface geometry with imaging sensors, such as multi/hyperspectral, thermal and ground-based InSAR, and geophysical methods, create novel and highly visual datasets that provide a fundamental spatial framework to address open geoscience research questions. Although data capture and processing routines are becoming well-established and widely reported in the scientific literature, challenges remain related to the analysis, co-visualisation and presentation of 3D photorealistic models, especially for new users (e.g. students and scientists new to geomatics methods). Interpretation and measurement is essential for quantitative analysis of 3D datasets, and qualitative methods are valuable for presentation purposes, for planning and in education. Motivated by this background, the current contribution presents LIME, a lightweight and high performance 3D software for interpreting and co-visualising 3D models and related image data in geoscience applications. The software focuses on novel data integration and visualisation of 3D topography with image sources such as hyperspectral imagery, logs and interpretation panels, geophysical datasets and georeferenced maps and images. High quality visual output can be generated for dissemination purposes, to aid researchers with communication of their research results. The background of the software is described and case studies from outcrop geology, in hyperspectral mineral mapping and geophysical-geospatial data integration are used to showcase the novel

  12. Career Paths for Geosciences Students (Invited) (United States)

    Bowers, T. S.; Flewelling, S. A.


    Current and future drivers of hiring in the geosciences include climate, environment, energy, georisk and litigation areas. Although climate is closely linked to the atmospheric sciences, hiring needs in the geosciences exist as well, in understanding potential impacts of climate change on coastal erosion and water resources. Where and how to consider carbon sequestration as a climate mitigation policy will also require geosciences expertise. The environmental sciences have long been a source of geosciences hiring, and have ongoing needs in the areas of investigation of contamination, and in fluid and chemical transport. The recent expansion of the energy sector in the U.S. is providing opportunities for the geosciences in oil and gas production, hydraulic fracturing, and in geothermal development. In georisk, expertise in earthquake and volcanic hazard prediction are increasingly important, particularly in population centers. Induced seismicity is a relatively new area of georisk that will also require geosciences skills. The skills needed in the future geosciences workforce are increasingly interdisciplinary, and include those that are both observational and quantitative. Field observations and their interpretation must be focused forward as well as backwards and include the ability to recognize change as it occurs. Areas of demand for quantitative skills include hydrological, geophysical, and geochemical modeling, math and statistics, with specialties such as rock mechanics becoming an increasingly important area. Characteristics that students should have to become successful employees in these sectors include strong communication skills, both oral and written, the ability to know when to stop "studying" and identify next steps, and the ability to turn research areas into solutions to problems.

  13. A geopotential model from satellite tracking, altimeter, and surface gravity data: GEM-T3 (United States)

    Lerch, F. J.; Nerem, R. S.; Putney, B. H.; Felsentreger, T. L.; Sanchez, B. V.; Marshall, J. A.; Klosko, S. M.; Patel, G. B.; Williamson, R. G.; Chinn, D. S.


    An improved model of Earth's gravitational field, Goddard Earth Model T-3 (GEM-T3), has been developed from a combination of satellite tracking, satellite altimeter, and surface gravimetric data. GEM-T3 provides a significant improvement in the modeling of the gravity field at half wavelengths of 400 km and longer. This model, complete to degree and order 50, yields more accurate satellite orbits and an improved geoid representation than previous Goddard Earth Models. GEM-T3 uses altimeter data from GEOS 3 (1975-1976), Seasat (1978) and Geosat (1986-1987). Tracking information used in the solution includes more than 1300 arcs of data encompassing 31 different satellites. The recovery of the long-wavelength components of the solution relies mostly on highly precise satellite laser ranging (SLR) data, but also includes Tracking Network (TRANET) Doppler, optical, and satellite-to-satellite tracking acquired between the ATS 6 and GEOS 3 satellites. The main advances over GEM-T2 (beyond the inclusion of altimeter and surface gravity information which is essential for the resolution of the shorter wavelength geoid) are some improved tracking data analysis approaches and additional SLR data. Although the use of altimeter data has greatly enhanced the modeling of the ocean geoid between 65 deg N and 60 deg S latitudes in GEM-T3, the lack of accurate detailed surface gravimetry leaves poor geoid resolution over many continental regions of great tectonic interest (e.g., Himalayas, Andes). Estimates of polar motion, tracking station coordinates, and long-wavelength ocean tidal terms were also made (accounting for 6330 parameters). GEM-T3 has undergone error calibration using a technique based on subset solutions to produce reliable error estimates. The calibration is based on the condition that the expected mean square deviation of a subset gravity solution from the full set values is predicted by the solutions' error covariances. Data weights are iteratively adjusted until

  14. Mapping of sea bottom topography over western offshore, India using TOPEX/ERS-1 altimeter data

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Mohanty, K.K.; Majumdar, T.J.; Kunte, P.D.; Srivastava, A.K.

    convolution model using satellite altimeter data over the Indian offshore region. The study used TOPEX/POSEIDON as well as ERS-1 altimeter data, along with National Geophysical Data Centre (NGDC), USA ship-borne bathymetry data. The altimeter range data...

  15. Lidar Altimeter Measurements of Canopy Structure: Methods and Validation for Closed Canopy, Broadleaf Forests (United States)

    Harding, D. J.; Lefsky, M. A.; Parker, G. G.; Blair, J. B.


    Lidar altimeter observations of vegetated landscapes provide a time-resolved measure of laser pulse backscatter energy from canopy surfaces and the underlying ground. Airborne lidar altimeter data was acquired using the Scanning Lidar Imager of Canopies by Echo Recovery (SLICER) for a successional sequence of four, closed-canopy, deciduous forest stands in eastern Maryland. The four stands were selected so as to include a range of canopy structures of importance to forest ecosystem function, including variation in the height and roughness of the outer-most canopy surface and the vertical organization of canopy stories and gaps. The character of the SLICER backscatter signal is described and a method is developed that accounts for occlusion of the laser energy by canopy surfaces, transforming the backscatter signal to a canopy height profile (CHP) that quantitatively represents the relative vertical distribution of canopy surface area. The transformation applies an increased weighting to the backscatter amplitude as a function of closure through the canopy and assumes a horizontally random distribution of the canopy components. SLICER CHPs, averaged over areas of overlap where lidar ground tracks intersect, are shown to be highly reproducible. CHP transects across the four stands reveal spatial variations in vegetation, at the scale of the individual 10 m diameter laser footprints, within and between stands. Averaged SLICER CHPs are compared to analogous height profile results derived from ground-based sightings to plant intercepts measured on plots within the four stands. Tbe plots were located on the segments of the lidar ground tracks from which averaged SLICER CHPs were derived, and the ground observations were acquired within two weeks of the SLICER data acquisition to minimize temporal change. The differences in canopy structure between the four stands is similarly described by the SLICER and ground-based CHP results, however a Chi-square test of similarity

  16. Geoscience and the 21st Century Workforce (United States)

    Manduca, C. A.; Bralower, T. J.; Blockstein, D.; Keane, C. M.; Kirk, K. B.; Schejbal, D.; Wilson, C. E.


    Geoscience knowledge and skills play new roles in the workforce as our society addresses the challenges of living safely and sustainably on Earth. As a result, we expect a wider range of future career opportunities for students with education in the geosciences and related fields. A workshop offered by the InTeGrate STEP Center on 'Geoscience and the 21st Century Workforce' brought together representatives from 24 programs with a substantial geoscience component, representatives from different employment sectors, and workforce scholars to explore the intersections between geoscience education and employment. As has been reported elsewhere, employment in energy, environmental and extractive sectors for geoscientists with core geology, quantitative and communication skills is expected to be robust over the next decade as demand for resources grow and a significant part of the current workforce retires. Relatively little is known about employment opportunities in emerging areas such as green energy or sustainability consulting. Employers at the workshop from all sectors are seeking the combination of strong technical, quantitative, communication, time management, and critical thinking skills. The specific technical skills are highly specific to the employer and employment needs. Thus there is not a single answer to the question 'What skills make a student employable?'. Employers at this workshop emphasized the value of data analysis, quantitative, and problem solving skills over broad awareness of policy issues. Employers value the ability to articulate an appropriate, effective, creative solution to problems. Employers are also very interested in enthusiasm and drive. Participants felt that the learning outcomes that their programs have in place were in line with the needs expressed by employers. Preparing students for the workforce requires attention to professional skills, as well as to the skills needed to identify career pathways and land a job. This critical

  17. Summaries of FY 91 geosciences research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The Department of Energy supports research in the geosciences in order to provide a sound foundation of fundamental knowledge in those areas of the geosciences which are germane to the Department of Energy's many missions. The Division of Engineering and Geosciences, part of the Office of Basic Energy Sciences of the Office of Energy Research supports the Geosciences Research Program. The participants in this program include Department of Energy laboratories, academic institutions, and other governmental agencies. Theses activities are formalized by a contract or grant between the Department of Energy and the organization performing the work, providing funds for salaries, equipment, research materials, and overhead. The summaries in this document, prepared by the investigators, describe the scope of the individual programs. The Geosciences Research Program includes research in geology, petrology, geophysics, geochemistry, solar physics, solar-terrestrial relationships, aeronomy, seismology, and natural resource modeling and analysis, including their various subdivisions and interdisciplinary areas. All such research is related either directly or indirectly to the Department of Energy's long-range technological needs. 2 tabs.

  18. Summaries of FY 92 geosciences research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The Department of Energy supports research in the geosciences in order to provide a sound foundation of fundamental knowledge in those areas of the geosciences that are germane to the Department of Energy's many missions. The Division of Engineering and Geosciences, part of the Office of Basic Energy Sciences of the Office of Energy Research, supports the Geosciences Research Program. The participants in this program include Department of Energy laboratories, academic institutions, and other governmental agencies. These activities are formalized by a contract or grant between the Department of Energy and the organization performing the work, providing funds for salaries, equipment, research materials, and overhead. The summaries in this document, prepared by the investigators, describe the scope of the individual programs. The Geosciences Research Program includes research in geophysics, geochemistry, resource evaluation, solar-terrestrial interactions and their subdivisions including Earth dynamics, properties of Earth materials, rock mechanics, underground imaging, rock-fluid interactions, continental scientific drilling, geochemical transport, solar/atmospheric physics, and modeling, with emphasis on the interdisciplinary areas. All such research is related either directly or indirectly to the Department of Energy's long-range technological needs.

  19. Validating NASA's Airborne Multikilohertz Microlaser Altimeter (Microaltimeter) by Direct Comparison of Data Taken Over Ocean City, Maryland Against an Existing Digital Elevation Model (United States)

    Abel, Peter


    NASA's Airborne Multikilohertz Microlaser Altimeter (Microaltimeter) is a scanning, photon-counting laser altimeter, which uses a low energy (less than 10 microJuoles), high repetition rate (approximately 10 kHz) laser, transmitting at 532 nm. A 14 cm diameter telescope images the ground return onto a segmented anode photomultiplier, which provides up to 16 range returns for each fire. Multiple engineering flights were made during 2001 and 2002 over the Maryland and Virginia coastal area, all during daylight hours. Post-processing of the data to geolocate the laser footprint and determine the terrain height requires post- detection Poisson filtering techniques to extract the actual ground returns from the noise. Validation of the instrument's ability to produce accurate terrain heights will be accomplished by direct comparison of data taken over Ocean City, Maryland with a Digital Elevation Model (DEM) of the region produced at Ohio State University (OSU) from other laser altimeter and photographic sources. The techniques employed to produce terrain heights from the Microaltimeter ranges will be shown, along with some preliminary comparisons with the OSU DEM.

  20. A do-it-yourself altimeter for trees

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geesink, R.


    Commercially available tree altimeters are expensive and heavy, and my personal experience with these instruments is thus minimal. During my last expedition I only used it now and then in the base camp to correct my ’feeling for estimation’. I have little doubt that colleagues will recognize these f

  1. The Importance of Altimeter and Scatterometer Data for Ocean Prediction, (United States)


    of water vapour , wind speed and wave height. Nature, 294, 529-532. Cheney, R. E. and J. G. Marsh, 1981: SEASAT altimeter observations of dynamic...E. and J. D. Thompson, 1980: A numerical study of Loop Current intrusions and eddy shedding. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 10, 1611-1651. ’Hurlburt, H. E. and J

  2. Social Technologies to Jump Start Geoscience Careers (United States)

    Keane, Christopher; Martinez, Cynthia; Gonzales, Leila


    Collaborative and social technologies have been increasingly used to facilitate distributed data collection and observation in science. However, "Web 2.0" and basic social media are seeing limited coordinated use in building student and early-career geoscientists knowledge and understanding of the profession and career for which they have undertaken. The current generation of geology students and early career professionals are used to ready access to myriad of information and interaction opportunities, but they remain largely unaware about the geoscience profession, what the full scope of their opportunities are, and how to reach across institutional and subdisciplinary boundaries to build their own professional network. The American Geological Institute Workforce Program has tracked and supported the human resources of the geosciences since 1952. With the looming retirement of Baby Boomers, increasing demand for quality geoscientists, and a continued modest supply of students entering the geosciences, AGI is working to strengthen the human resource pipeline in the geosciences globally. One aspect of this effort is the GeoConnection Network, which is an integrated set of social networking, media sharing and communication Web 2.0 applications designed to engage students in thinking about careers in the geosciences and enabling them to build their own personal professional network. Developed by the American Geological Institute (AGI), GeoConnection links practicing and prospective geoscientists in an informal setting to share information about the geoscience profession, including student and career opportunities, current events, and future trends in the geosciences. The network includes a Facebook fan page, YouTube Channel, Twitter account and GeoSpectrum blog, with the goal of helping science organizations and departments recruit future talent to the geoscience workforce. On the social-networking platform, Facebook, the GeoConnection page is a forum for students and

  3. IUGS Commission on Geoscience Education, Training and Technology Transfer (COGE)

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Gary Lewis; Wesley Hill


    @@ Background and history on the Commission on Geoscience Education Our history In previous years, IUGS conducted a programme in the area of Geoscience Education and Training. The programme was organised under the status of a Working Group or a Commission.

  4. Summaries of physical research in the geosciences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The Department of Energy supports research in the geosciences in order to provide a sound foundation of fundamental knowledge in those areas of earth, atmospheric, and solar-terrestrial sciences that are germane to the Department of Energy's many missions. The summaries describe the scope of the individual programs and detail the research performed during 1980 to 1981. The Geosciences Research Program includes research in geology, petrology, geophysics, geochemistry, hydrology, solar-terrestrial relationships, aeronomy, seismology, and natural resource analysis, including the various subdivisions and interdisciplinary areas.

  5. Summaries of physical research in the geosciences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The Department of Energy supports research in the geosciences in order to provide a sound foundation of fundamental knowledge in those areas of earth, atmospheric, and solar-terrestrial sciences that are germane to the Department of Energy's many missions. The summaries in the document describe the scope of the individual programs and detail the research performed during 1982 to 1983. The Geoscience Research Program includes research in geology, petrology, geophysics, geochemistry, hydrology, solar-terrestrial relationships, aeronomy, seismology, and natural resource analysis, including the various subdivisions and interdisciplinary areas. All such research is related either directly or indirectly to the Department of Energy's technological needs.

  6. Summaries of physical research in the geosciences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The Department of Energy supports research in the geosciences in order to provide a sound foundation of fundamental knowledge in those areas that are germane to the Department of Energy's many missions. The summaries in this document, prepared by the investigators, describe the scope of the individual programs. The Geoscience Research Program includes research in geology, petrology, geophysics, geochemistry, solar-terrestrial relationships, aeronomy, seismology, and natural resource analysis, including their various subdivisions and interdisciplinary areas. All such research is related either directly or indirectly to the Department of Energy's technological needs.

  7. International Geoscience Programme(IGCP) Guidelines

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    @@ 2006 Call for Project Proposals (31 July 2006) The International Geoscience Programme (IGCP) is launching its 2006 call/or project proposals. The proposal guidelines and application forms were updated in order to bring them in line with the requirements of the strategic plan of UNESCO and IUGS (International Union of Geological Sciences), the two co-sponsoring partners.

  8. Geoscience international: the role of scientific unions (United States)

    Ismail-Zadeh, Alik


    International geoscientific unions (geounions) have been coordinating and promoting international efforts in Earth and space sciences since the beginning of the 20th century. Thousands of scientists from many nations and specific scientific disciplines have developed ways of cooperation through international unions and learned how to work together to promote basic geosciences. The unions have been initiating, developing, and implementing international cooperative programmes, setting scientific standards, developing research tools, educating and building capacity, and contributing to science for policy. This paper analyses the role of geounions in and their added value to the promotion of geoscience internationally in the arena of the existing and emerging professional societies of geoscientists. The history of the geounions and the development of international cooperation in geosciences are reviewed in the paper in the context of scientific and political changes over the last century. History is considered here to be a key element in understanding and shaping the future of geounions. Scientific and organisational aspects of their activities, including cooperation with international and intergovernmental institutions, are analysed using the example of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG). The geounions' activities are compared to those of professional societies. Future development of scientific unions and their role in the changing global landscape of geosciences are discussed.

  9. Summaries of physical research in the geosciences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The summaries in this document describe the scope of the individual programs and detail the research performed during 1984-1985. The Geosciences Research Program includes research in geology, petrology, geophysics, geochemistry, hydrology, solar-terrestrial relationships, aeronomy, seismology, and natural resource analysis, including their various subdivisions and interdisciplinary areas.

  10. Strategies for estimating the marine geoid from altimeter data (United States)

    Argentiero, P.; Kahn, W. D.; Garza-Robles, R.


    In processing altimeter data from a spacecraft borne altimeter to estimate the fine structure of the marine geoid, a problem is encountered. In order to describe the geoid fine structure, a large number of parameters must be employed and it is not possible to simultaneously estimate all of them. Unless the parameterization exhibits good orthogonality in the data, serious aliasing results. From simulation studies it has been found that amongst several competing parameterizations, the mean free air gravity anomaly model (i.e., Stokes' formula) exhibited promising geoid recovery characteristics. Using covariance analysis techniques, this report provides quantitative measures of the orthogonality properties associated with the above mentioned parameterization. It has been determined that a 5 deg x 5 deg area mean free air gravity anomaly can be estimated with an uncertainty of 1 mgal (40 cm undulation) provided that all free air gravity anomalies within a spherical radius of 10 arc degrees are simultaneously estimated.

  11. Teaching Geoethics Across the Geoscience Curriculum (United States)

    Mogk, David; Bruckner, Monica; Kieffer, Susan; Geissman, John; Reidy, Michael; Taylor, Shaun; Vallero, Daniel


    Training in geoethics is an important part of pre-professional development of geoscientists. Professional societies, governmental agencies, and employers of the geoscience workforce increasingly expect that students have had some training in ethics to guide their professional lives, and the public demands that scientists abide by the highest standards of ethical conduct. The nature of the geosciences exposes the profession to ethical issues that derive from our work in a complex, dynamic Earth system with an incomplete geologic record and a high degree of uncertainty and ambiguity in our findings. The geosciences also address topics such as geohazards and resource development that have ethical dimensions that impact on the health, security, public policies, and economic well-being of society. However, there is currently no formal course of study to integrate geoethics into the geoscience curriculum and few faculty have the requisite training to effectively teach about ethics in their classes, or even informally in mentoring their research students. To address this need, an NSF-funded workshop was convened to explore how ethics education can be incorporated into the geoscience curriculum. The workshop addressed topics such as where and how should geoethics be taught in a range of courses including introductory courses for non-majors, as embedded modules in existing geoscience courses, or as a dedicated course for majors on geoethics; what are the best pedagogic practices in teaching ethics, including lessons learned from cognate disciplines (philosophy, biology, engineering); what are the goals for teaching geoethics, and what assessments can be used to demonstrate mastery of ethical principles; what resources currently exist to support teaching geoethics, and what new resources are needed? The workshop also explored four distinct but related aspects of geoethics: 1) Geoethics and self: what are the internal attributes of a geoscientist that establish the ethical

  12. A Stochastic Approach to Noise Modeling for Barometric Altimeters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angelo Maria Sabatini


    Full Text Available The question whether barometric altimeters can be applied to accurately track human motions is still debated, since their measurement performance are rather poor due to either coarse resolution or drifting behavior problems. As a step toward accurate short-time tracking of changes in height (up to few minutes, we develop a stochastic model that attempts to capture some statistical properties of the barometric altimeter noise. The barometric altimeter noise is decomposed in three components with different physical origin and properties: a deterministic time-varying mean, mainly correlated with global environment changes, and a first-order Gauss-Markov (GM random process, mainly accounting for short-term, local environment changes, the effects of which are prominent, respectively, for long-time and short-time motion tracking; an uncorrelated random process, mainly due to wideband electronic noise, including quantization noise. Autoregressive-moving average (ARMA system identification techniques are used to capture the correlation structure of the piecewise stationary GM component, and to estimate its standard deviation, together with the standard deviation of the uncorrelated component. M-point moving average filters used alone or in combination with whitening filters learnt from ARMA model parameters are further tested in few dynamic motion experiments and discussed for their capability of short-time tracking small-amplitude, low-frequency motions.

  13. A stochastic approach to noise modeling for barometric altimeters. (United States)

    Sabatini, Angelo Maria; Genovese, Vincenzo


    The question whether barometric altimeters can be applied to accurately track human motions is still debated, since their measurement performance are rather poor due to either coarse resolution or drifting behavior problems. As a step toward accurate short-time tracking of changes in height (up to few minutes), we develop a stochastic model that attempts to capture some statistical properties of the barometric altimeter noise. The barometric altimeter noise is decomposed in three components with different physical origin and properties: a deterministic time-varying mean, mainly correlated with global environment changes, and a first-order Gauss-Markov (GM) random process, mainly accounting for short-term, local environment changes, the effects of which are prominent, respectively, for long-time and short-time motion tracking; an uncorrelated random process, mainly due to wideband electronic noise, including quantization noise. Autoregressive-moving average (ARMA) system identification techniques are used to capture the correlation structure of the piecewise stationary GM component, and to estimate its standard deviation, together with the standard deviation of the uncorrelated component. M-point moving average filters used alone or in combination with whitening filters learnt from ARMA model parameters are further tested in few dynamic motion experiments and discussed for their capability of short-time tracking small-amplitude, low-frequency motions.

  14. Building a Community for Art and Geoscience (United States)

    Eriksson, S. C.; Ellins, K. K.


    Several new avenues are in place for building and supporting a community of people interested in the art and geoscience connections. Although sessions advocating for art in teaching geoscience have been scattered through geoscience professional meetings for several decades, there is now a sustained presence of artists and geoscientists with their research and projects at the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union. In 2011, 13 abstracts were submitted and, in 2013, 20 talks and posters were presented at the annual meeting. Participants have requested more ways to connect with each other as well as advocate for this movement of art and science to others. Several words can describe new initiatives to do this: Social, Collaborative, Connected, Informed, Networked, and Included. Social activities of informal dinners, lunches, and happy hour for interested people in the past year have provided opportunity for presenters at AGU to spend time getting to know one another. This has resulted in at least two new collaborative projects. The nascent Bella Roca and more established Geology in Art websites and their associated blogs at and, respectively are dedicated to highlighting the work of artists inspired by the geosciences, connecting people and informing the community of exhibits and opportunities for collaboration. Bella Roca with its social media of Facebook (Bella Roca) and Twitter (@BellRocaGeo), is a direct outgrowth of the recent 2012 and 2013 AGU sessions and, hopefully, can be grown and sustained for this community. Articles in professional journals will also help inform the broader geoscience community of the benefit of engaging with artists and designers for both improved science knowledge and communication. Organizations such as Leonardo, the International Society for the Arts, Sciences and Technology, the Art Science Gallery in Austin, Texas also promote networking among artists and scientists with

  15. Visualizing Geoscience Concepts Through Textbook Art (Invited) (United States)

    Marshak, S.


    Many, if not most, college students taking an introductory geoscience course purchase, borrow, download, or rent one of several commercial textbooks currently available. Art used in such books has evolved significantly over the past three decades. Concepts once conveyed only by black-and-white line drawings, drawn by hand in ink, have gradually been replaced by full-color images produced digitally. Multiple high-end graphics programs, when used in combination, can yield images with super-realistic textures and palettes so that, in effect, anything that a book author wants to be drawn can be drawn. Because of the time and skill level involved in producing the art, the process commonly involves professional artists. In order to produce high-quality geoscience art that can help students (who are, by definition, non-experts) understand concepts, develop geoscience intuition, and hone their spatial-visualization skills, an author must address two problems. First, design a figure which can convey complex concepts through visual elements that resonate with students. Second, communicate the concepts to a professional artist who does not necessarily have personal expertise in geoscience, so that the figure rendered is both technically correct and visually engaging. The ultimate goal of geoscience art in textbooks is to produce an image that avoids unnecessary complexity that could distract from the art's theme, includes sufficient realism for a non-expert to relate the image to the real world, provides a personal context in which to interpret the figure, and has a layout that conveys relationships among multiple components of the art so that the art tells a coherent story. To accomplish this goal, a chain of choices--about perspective, sizes, colors, texture, labeling, captioning, line widths, and fonts--must be made in collaboration between the author and artist. In the new world of computer-aided learning, figures must also be able to work both on the computer screen and

  16. Altimeter Estimation of Sea Surface Wind Stress for Light to Moderate Winds (United States)

    Vandemark, Douglas; Edson, James B.; Chapron, Bertrand


    Aircraft altimeter and in situ measurements are used to examine relationships between altimeter backscatter and the magnitude of near-surface wind and friction velocities. Comparison of altimeter radar cross section with wind speed is made through the modified Chelton-Wentz algorithm. Improved agreement is found after correcting 10-m winds for both surface current and atmospheric stability. An altimeter friction velocity algorithm is derived based on the wind speed model and an open-ocean drag coefficient. Close agreement between altimeter- and in situ-derived friction velocities is found. For this dataset, quality of the altimeter inversion to surface friction velocity is comparable to that for adjusted winds and clearly better than the inversion to true 10-m wind speed.

  17. Wind waves in tropical cyclones: satellite altimeter observations and modeling (United States)

    Golubkin, Pavel; Kudryavtsev, Vladimir; Chapron, Bertrand


    Results of investigation of wind-wave generation by tropical cyclones using satellite altimeter data are presented. Tropical cyclones are generally relatively small rapidly moving low pressure systems that are capable of generating severe wave conditions. Translation of a tropical cyclone leads to a prolonged period of time surface waves in the right sector remain under high wind forcing conditions. This effect has been termed extended fetch, trapped fetch or group velocity quasi-resonance. A tropical cyclone wave field is thus likely more asymmetrical than the corresponding wind field: wind waves in the tropical cyclone right sector are more developed with larger heights than waves in the left one. A dataset of satellite altimeter intersections of the Western Pacific tropical cyclones was created for 2010-2013. Data from four missions were considered, i.e., Jason-1, Jason-2, CryoSat-2, SARAL/AltiKa. Measurements in the rear-left and front-right sectors of tropical cyclones were examined for the presence of significant wave asymmetry. An analytical model is then derived to efficiently describe the wave energy distribution in a moving tropical cyclone. The model essentially builds on a generalization of the self-similar wave growth model and the assumption of a strongly dominant single spectral mode in a given quadrant of the storm. The model provides a criterion to anticipate wave enhancement with the generation of trapped abnormal waves. If forced during a sufficient timescale interval, also defined from this generalized self-similar wave growth model, waves can be trapped and large amplification of the wave energy will occur in the front-right storm quadrant. Remarkably, the group velocity and corresponding wavelength of outrunning wave systems will become wind speed independent and solely relate to the translating velocity. The resulting significant wave height also only weakly depends on wind speed, and more strongly on the translation velocity. Satellite

  18. New Radar Altimeter Missions are Providing a Dramatically Sharper Image of Global Marine Tectonics (United States)

    Sandwell, D. T.; Müller, D.; Garcia, E.; Matthews, K. J.; Smith, W. H. F.; Zaron, E.; Zhang, S.; Bassett, D.; Francis, R.


    Marine gravity, derived from satellite radar altimetry, is a powerful tool for mapping tectonic structures, especially in the deep ocean basins where the topography remains unmapped by ships or is buried by thick sediment. The ability to infer seafloor tectonics from space was first demonstrated in 1978 using Seasat altimeter data but the spatial coverage was incomplete because of the short three-month lifetime of the satellite. Most ocean altimeters have repeat ground tracks with spacings of hundreds of kilometers so they do not resolve tectonic structures. Adequate altimeter coverage became available in 1995 when the United States Navy declassified the Geosat radar altimeter data and the ERS-1 altimeter completed a 1-year mapping phase. These mid-1990's altimeter-derived images of the ocean basins remained static for 15 years because there were no new non-repeat altimeter missions. This situation changed dramatically in 2010 when CryoSat-2, with its advanced radar altimeter, was launched into a non-repeat orbit and continues to collect data until perhaps 2020. In addition the Jason-1 altimeter was placed into a 14-month geodetic phase at the end of its lifetime. More recently the 1.5 times higher precision measurements from the AltiKa altimeter aboard the SARAL spacecraft began to drift away from its 35-day repeat trackline. The Chinese HY-2 altimeter is scheduled to begin a dense mapping phase in early 2016. Moreover in 2020 we may enjoy significantly higher resolution maps of the ocean basins from the planned SWOT altimeter mission with its advanced swath mapping ability. All of this new data will provide a much sharper image of the tectonics of the deep ocean basins and continental margins. During this talk we will tour of the new tectonic structures revealed by CryoSat-2 and Jason-1 and speculate on the tectonic views of the ocean basins in 2020 and beyond.

  19. ESA's Earth Observation in Support of Geoscience (United States)

    Liebig, Volker


    The intervention will present ESA's Earth Observation Programme and its contribution to Geoscience. ESA's Earth observation missions are mainly grouped into three categories: The Sentinel satellites in the context of the European Copernicus Programme, the scientific Earth Explorers and the meteorological missions. Developments, applications and scientific results for the different mission types will be addressed, along with overall trends and strategies. A special focus will be put on the Earth Explorers, who form the science and research element of ESA's Living Planet Programme and focus on the atmosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere and Earth's interior. In addition the operational Sentinel satellites have a huge potential for Geoscience. Earth Explorers' emphasis is also on learning more about the interactions between these components and the impact that human activity is having on natural Earth processes. The process of Earth Explorer mission selection has given the Earth science community an efficient tool for advancing the understanding of Earth as a system.

  20. NSF assistant director for geosciences announces resignation (United States)

    Zielinki, Sarah

    Margaret Leinen, assistant director for geosciences at the U.S. National Science Foundation, announced on 7 December that she will be leaving NSF in January 2007 to become the chief science officer and vice president of Climos, a new company based in San Francisco, Calif., that plans to develop solutions to reduce greenhouse gases. Leinen will oversee efforts to better understand the planet's carbon cycle to address global climate change issues.Leinen has managed the Directorate for Geosciences since 2000. She also served as vice chair of the U.S. Climate Change Science Program, which coordinates federal climate change research, and as co-chair of the National Science and Technology Council's Joint Committee on Ocean Science and Technology.

  1. Summaries of FY 1994 geosciences research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The Geosciences Research Program is directed by the Department of Energy`s (DOE`s) Office of Energy Research (OER) through its Office of Basic Energy Sciences (OBES). Activities in the Geosciences Research Program are directed toward the long-term fundamental knowledge of the processes that transport, modify, concentrate, and emplace (1) the energy and mineral resources of the earth and (2) the energy byproducts of man. The Program is divided into five broad categories: Geophysics and earth dynamics; Geochemistry; Energy resource recognition, evaluation, and utilization; Hydrogeology and exogeochemistry; and Solar-terrestrial interactions. The summaries in this document, prepared by the investigators, describe the scope of the individual programs in these main areas and their subdivisions including earth dynamics, properties of earth materials, rock mechanics, underground imaging, rock-fluid interactions, continental scientific drilling, geochemical transport, solar/atmospheric physics, and modeling, with emphasis on the interdisciplinary areas.

  2. Geoscience salaries up by 10.8% (United States)

    Bell, Peter M.

    According to a recent salary survey of over 4000 scientists in all fields by Research and Development (March 1984) geoscientists ranked fourth place for 1984. Mathematics, aeronautical engineering, and metallurgy had higher median salaries, but the discipline of geoscience had a higher median salary than that of physics, chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, ceramics, chemistry, industrial engineering, biology, and other fields of research and development. The 1984 median salary for geoscientists was $40,950, up from the median value by 10.8%. In 1983, geoscience was ranked in ninth place.The geoscientist profile for 1984 was not unusual. The median age was 47.5 years, and the median years of experience was 18. Geoscientists are the best educated. Eighty-two percent of the geoscientists polled had advanced degrees beyond the bachelor's degree. Fifty-six percent of the geoscientists had the Ph.D. degree.

  3. The Canadian Geoscience Education Network: a collaborative grassroots effort to support geoscience education (United States)

    Bank, C.; Halfkenny, B.; Hymers, L.; Clinton, L.; Heenan, S.; Jackson, D.; Nowlan, G.; Haidl, F.; Vodden, C.


    The Canadian Geoscience Education Network (CGEN) numbers over 300 members who are active in promoting geoscience to the general public and especially in schools. Our membership spreads from coast to coast to coast in Canada and represents the wide range of geosciences. Most members work in education, government, industry, academia, or not-for-profit organizations. Our common goals are to (1) provide resources to teachers for the K-12 curriculum, (2) encourage students to pursue higher education and a rewarding career in geoscience, and (3) lobby to effect change to the school curriculum. Our strength is grounded in a grassroots approach (eg, regional chapters), flexible organization, and emphasis on a cost-effective style. Together we have created and maintain resources for teachers; for example, EdGEO (local workshops for teachers), Geoscape (community-based posters and lesson plans), and EarthNet (virtual resource centre). A new website showcases careers in the Earth sciences. CGEN members ensure that these resources remain current, promote them at individual outreach activities, and see to it that they are maintained. Although we have limited funding we draw strength from the networks of our members and capitalize on partnerships between seemingly disparate organizations and groups to get experts involved in the education of future geoscientists. (Details about CGEN may be found at

  4. Summaries of FY 1996 geosciences research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    The Geosciences Research Program is directed by the Department of Energy`s (DOE`s) Office of Energy Research (OER) through its Office of Basic Energy Sciences (OBES). Activities in the Geosciences Research Program are directed toward building the long-term fundamental knowledge base necessary to provide for energy technologies of the future. Future energy technologies and their individual roles in satisfying the nations energy needs cannot be easily predicted. It is clear, however, that these future energy technologies will involve consumption of energy and mineral resources and generation of technological wastes. The earth is a source for energy and mineral resources and is also the host for wastes generated by technological enterprise. Viable energy technologies for the future must contribute to a national energy enterprise that is efficient, economical, and environmentally sound. The Geosciences Research Program emphasizes research leading to fundamental knowledge of the processes that transport, modify, concentrate, and emplace (1) the energy and mineral resources of the earth and (2) the energy by-products of man.

  5. Programming and Technology for Accessibility in Geoscience (United States)

    Sevre, E.; Lee, S.


    Many people, students and professors alike, shy away from learning to program because it is often believed to be something scary or unattainable. However, integration of programming into geoscience education can be a valuable tool for increasing the accessibility of content for all who are interested. It is my goal to dispel these myths and convince people that: 1) Students with disabilities can use programming to increase their role in the classroom, 2) Everyone can learn to write programs to simplify daily tasks, 3) With a deep understanding of the task, anyone can write a program to do a complex task, 4) Technology can be combined with programming to create an inclusive environment for all students of geoscience, and 5) More advanced knowledge of programming and technology can lead geoscientists to create software to serve as assistive technology in the classroom. It is my goal to share my experiences using technology to enhance the classroom experience as a way of addressing the aforementioned issues. Through my experience, I have found that programming skills can be included and learned by all to enhance the content of courses without detracting from curriculum. I hope that, through this knowledge, geoscience courses can become more accessible for people with disabilities by including programming and technology to the benefit of all involved.

  6. Developing a Geoscience Literacy Exam: Pushing Geoscience Literacy Assessment to New Levels (United States)

    Iverson, E. A.; Steer, D. N.; Manduca, C. A.


    InTeGrate is a community effort aimed at improving geoscience literacy and building a workforce that can use geoscience to solve societal issues. As part of this work we have developed a geoscience literacy assessment instrument to measure students' higher order thinking. This assessment is an important part of the development of curricula designed to increase geoscience literacy for all undergraduate students. To this end, we developed the Geoscience Literacy Exam (GLE) as one of the tools to quantify the effectiveness of these materials on students' understandings of geoscience literacy. The InTeGrate project is a 5-year, NSF-funded STEP Center grant in its first year of funding. Details concerning the project are found at The GLE instrument addresses content and concepts in the Earth, Climate, and Ocean Science literacy documents. The testing schema is organized into three levels of increasing complexity. Level 1 questions are single answer, understanding- or application-level multiple choice questions. For example, selecting which type of energy transfer is most responsible for the movement of tectonic plates. They are designed such that most introductory level students should be able to correctly answer after taking an introductory geoscience course. Level 2 questions are more advanced multiple answer/matching questions, at the understanding- through analysis-level. Students might be asked to determine the types of earth-atmosphere interactions that could result in changes to global temperatures in the event of a major volcanic eruption. Because the answers are more complicated, some introductory students and most advanced students should be able to respond correctly. Level 3 questions are analyzing- to evaluating-level short essays, such as describe the ways in which the atmosphere sustains life on Earth. These questions are designed such that introductory students could probably formulate a rudimentary response

  7. NODC Standard Product: US Navy Geosat altimeter Crossover Differences (XDRs) for the Geodetic Mission (8 disc set) (NODC Accession 0054498) (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This accession contains a copy of the NODC eight CD-ROMs product set of the Geosat altimeter Crossover Differences data Records (XDRs) for altimeter data obtained...

  8. 14 CFR 91.411 - Altimeter system and altitude reporting equipment tests and inspections. (United States)


    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Altimeter system and altitude reporting equipment tests and inspections. 91.411 Section 91.411 Aeronautics and Space FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION... RULES Maintenance, Preventive Maintenance, and Alterations § 91.411 Altimeter system and...

  9. 14 CFR 29.1325 - Static pressure and pressure altimeter systems. (United States)


    ...: Installation § 29.1325 Static pressure and pressure altimeter systems. (a) Each instrument with static air case... between air pressure in the static pressure system and true ambient atmospheric static pressure is not..., when on the alternate static pressure system, differs from the reading of altimeter when on the primary...

  10. Case studies of ERS-1 altimeter data applicating in China Sea

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杨学联; 季晓阳; 黄润恒; 凌铁军


    The impact of ERS-1 altimeter significant wave height on analysis of wave field and wave predictions is tested through analysis of selected cases. Application of the altimeter data may modifg initial field and thus 24-hour prediction of significant wave height. However the variations in initial wave field almost make no effect on 48-hour predictions.

  11. The Case for Infusing Quantitative Literacy into Introductory Geoscience Courses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer M. Wenner


    Full Text Available We present the case for introductory geoscience courses as model venues for increasing the quantitative literacy (QL of large numbers of the college-educated population. The geosciences provide meaningful context for a number of fundamental mathematical concepts that are revisited several times in a single course. Using some best practices from the mathematics education community surrounding problem solving, calculus reform, pre-college mathematics and five geoscience/math workshops, geoscience and mathematics faculty have identified five pedagogical ideas to increase the QL of the students who populate introductory geoscience courses. These five ideas include techniques such as: place mathematical concepts in context, use multiple representations, use technology appropriately, work in groups, and do multiple-day, in-depth problems that place quantitative skills in multiple contexts. We discuss the pedagogical underpinnings of these five ideas and illustrate some ways that the geosciences represent ideal places to use these techniques. However, the inclusion of QL in introductory courses is often met with resistance at all levels. Faculty who wish to include quantitative content must use creative means to break down barriers of public perception of geoscience as qualitative, administrative worry that enrollments will drop and faculty resistance to change. Novel ways to infuse QL into geoscience classrooms include use of web-based resources, shadow courses, setting clear expectations, and promoting quantitative geoscience to the general public. In order to help faculty increase the QL of geoscience students, a community-built faculty-centered web resource (Teaching Quantitative Skills in the Geosciences houses multiple examples that implement the five best practices of QL throughout the geoscience curriculum. We direct faculty to three portions of the web resource: Teaching Quantitative Literacy, QL activities, and the 2006 workshop website

  12. Geoscience on television : a review of science communication literature in the context of geosciences

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hut, W R.; Land, A.M.; Smeets, I.; Stoof, C.


    Geoscience communication is becoming increasingly important as climate change increases the occurrence of natural hazards around the world. Few geoscientists are trained in effective science communication, and awareness of the formal science communication literature is also low. This can be challeng

  13. Geoscience on television : a review of science communication literature in the context of geosciences

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hut, W R.; Land, A.M.; Smeets, I.; Stoof, C.


    Geoscience communication is becoming increasingly important as climate change increases the occurrence of natural hazards around the world. Few geoscientists are trained in effective science communication, and awareness of the formal science communication literature is also low. This can be challeng

  14. Temporal Ontologies for Geoscience: Alignment Challenges (United States)

    Cox, S. J. D.


    Time is a central concept in geoscience. Geologic histories are composed of sequences of geologic processes and events. Calibration of their timing ties a local history into a broader context, and enables correlation of events between locations. The geologic timescale is standardized in the International Chronostratigraphic Chart, which specifies interval names, and calibrations for the ages of the interval boundaries. Time is also a key concept in the world at large. A number of general purpose temporal ontologies have been developed, both stand-alone and as parts of general purpose or upper ontologies. A temporal ontology for geoscience should apply or extend a suitable general purpose temporal ontology. However, geologic time presents two challenges: Geology involves greater spans of time than in other temporal ontologies, inconsistent with the year-month-day/hour-minute-second formalization that is a basic assumption of most general purpose temporal schemes; The geologic timescale is a temporal topology. Its calibration in terms of an absolute (numeric) scale is a scientific issue in its own right supporting a significant community. In contrast, the general purpose temporal ontologies are premised on exact numeric values for temporal position, and do not allow for temporal topology as a primary structure. We have developed an ontology for the geologic timescale to account for these concerns. It uses the ISO 19108 distinctions between different types of temporal reference system, also linking to an explicit temporal topology model. Stratotypes used in the calibration process are modelled as sampling-features following the ISO 19156 Observations and Measurements model. A joint OGC-W3C harmonization project is underway, with standardization of the W3C OWL-Time ontology as one of its tasks. The insights gained from the geologic timescale ontology will assist in development of a general ontology capable of modelling a richer set of use-cases from geoscience.

  15. Agent Based Modeling Applications for Geosciences (United States)

    Stein, J. S.


    Agent-based modeling techniques have successfully been applied to systems in which complex behaviors or outcomes arise from varied interactions between individuals in the system. Each individual interacts with its environment, as well as with other individuals, by following a set of relatively simple rules. Traditionally this "bottom-up" modeling approach has been applied to problems in the fields of economics and sociology, but more recently has been introduced to various disciplines in the geosciences. This technique can help explain the origin of complex processes from a relatively simple set of rules, incorporate large and detailed datasets when they exist, and simulate the effects of extreme events on system-wide behavior. Some of the challenges associated with this modeling method include: significant computational requirements in order to keep track of thousands to millions of agents, methods and strategies of model validation are lacking, as is a formal methodology for evaluating model uncertainty. Challenges specific to the geosciences, include how to define agents that control water, contaminant fluxes, climate forcing and other physical processes and how to link these "geo-agents" into larger agent-based simulations that include social systems such as demographics economics and regulations. Effective management of limited natural resources (such as water, hydrocarbons, or land) requires an understanding of what factors influence the demand for these resources on a regional and temporal scale. Agent-based models can be used to simulate this demand across a variety of sectors under a range of conditions and determine effective and robust management policies and monitoring strategies. The recent focus on the role of biological processes in the geosciences is another example of an area that could benefit from agent-based applications. A typical approach to modeling the effect of biological processes in geologic media has been to represent these processes in

  16. OERL: A Tool For Geoscience Education Evaluators (United States)

    Zalles, D. R.


    The Online Evaluation Resource Library (OERL) is a Web-based set of resources for improving the evaluation of projects funded by the Directorate for Education and Human Resources (EHR) of the National Science Foundation (NSF). OERL provides prospective project developers and evaluators with material that they can use to design, conduct, document, and review evaluations. OERL helps evaluators tackle the challenges of seeing if a project is meeting its implementation and outcome-related goals. Within OERL is a collection of exemplary plans, instruments, and reports from evaluations of EHR-funded projects in the geosciences and in other areas of science and mathematics. In addition, OERL contains criteria about good evaluation practices, professional development modules about evaluation design and questionnaire development, a dictionary of key evaluation terms, and links to evaluation standards. Scenarios illustrate how the resources can be used or adapted. Currently housed in OERL are 137 instruments, and full or excerpted versions of 38 plans and 60 reports. 143 science and math projects have contributed to the collection so far. OERL's search tool permits the launching of precise searches based on key attributes of resources such as their subject area and the name of the sponsoring university or research institute. OERL's goals are to 1) meet the needs for continuous professional development of evaluators and principal investigators, 2) complement traditional vehicles of learning about evaluation, 3) utilize the affordances of current technologies (e.g., Web-based digital libraries, relational databases, and electronic performance support systems) for improving evaluation practice, 4) provide anytime/anyplace access to update-able resources that support evaluators' needs, and 5) provide a forum by which professionals can interact on evaluation issues and practices. Geoscientists can search the collection of resources from geoscience education projects that have

  17. Muons tomography applied to geosciences and volcanology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marteau, J., E-mail: [Institut de Physique Nucleaire de Lyon (UMR CNRS-IN2P3 5822), Universite Lyon 1, Lyon (France); Gibert, D.; Lesparre, N. [Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris (UMR CNRS 7154), Sorbonne Paris Cite, Paris (France); Nicollin, F. [Geosciences Rennes (CNRS UMR 6118), Universite Rennes 1, Bat. 15 Campus de Beaulieu, 35042 Rennes cedex (France); Noli, P. [Universita degli studi di Napoli Federico II and INFN sez. Napoli (Italy); Giacoppo, F. [Laboratory for High Energy Physics, University of Bern, SidlerStrasse 5, CH-3012 Bern (Switzerland)


    Imaging the inner part of large geological targets is an important issue in geosciences with various applications. Different approaches already exist (e.g. gravimetry, electrical tomography) that give access to a wide range of information but with identified limitations or drawbacks (e.g. intrinsic ambiguity of the inverse problem, time consuming deployment of sensors over large distances). Here we present an alternative and complementary tomography method based on the measurement of the cosmic muons flux attenuation through the geological structures. We detail the basics of this muon tomography with a special emphasis on the photo-active detectors.

  18. Muons tomography applied to geosciences and volcanology

    CERN Document Server

    Marteau, J; Lesparre, N; Nicollin, F; Noli, P; Giacoppo, F


    Imaging the inner part of large geological targets is an important issue in geosciences with various applications. Dif- ferent approaches already exist (e.g. gravimetry, electrical tomography) that give access to a wide range of informations but with identified limitations or drawbacks (e.g. intrinsic ambiguity of the inverse problem, time consuming deployment of sensors over large distances). Here we present an alternative and complementary tomography method based on the measurement of the cosmic muons flux attenuation through the geological structures. We detail the basics of this muon tomography with a special emphasis on the photo-active detectors.

  19. A Model Collaborative Platform for Geoscience Education (United States)

    Fox, S.; Manduca, C. A.; Iverson, E. A.


    Over the last decade SERC at Carleton College has developed a collaborative platform for geoscience education that has served dozens of projects, thousands of community authors and millions of visitors. The platform combines a custom technical infrastructure: the SERC Content Management system (CMS), and a set of strategies for building web-resources that can be disseminated through a project site, reused by other projects (with attribution) or accessed via an integrated geoscience education resource drawing from all projects using the platform. The core tools of the CMS support geoscience education projects in building project-specific websites. Each project uses the CMS to engage their specific community in collecting, authoring and disseminating the materials of interest to them. At the same time the use of a shared central infrastructure allows cross-fertilization among these project websites. Projects are encouraged to use common templates and common controlled vocabularies for organizing and displaying their resources. This standardization is then leveraged through cross-project search indexing which allow projects to easily incorporate materials from other projects within their own collection in ways that are relevant and automated. A number of tools are also in place to help visitors move among project websites based on their personal interests. Related links help visitors discover content related topically to their current location that is in a 'separate' project. A 'best bets' feature in search helps guide visitors to pages that are good starting places to explore resources on a given topic across the entire range of hosted projects. In many cases these are 'site guide' pages created specifically to promote a cross-project view of the available resources. In addition to supporting the cross-project exploration of specific themes the CMS also allows visitors to view the combined suite of resources authored by any particular community member. Automatically

  20. Geoscience Training for NASA Astronaut Candidates (United States)

    Young, K. E.; Evans, C. A.; Bleacher, J. E.; Graff, T. G.; Zeigler, R.


    After being selected to the astronaut office, crewmembers go through an initial two year training flow, astronaut candidacy, where they learn the basic skills necessary for spaceflight. While the bulk of astronaut candidate training currently centers on the multiple subjects required for ISS operations (EVA skills, Russian language, ISS systems, etc.), training also includes geoscience training designed to train crewmembers in Earth observations, teach astronauts about other planetary systems, and provide field training designed to investigate field operations and boost team skills. This training goes back to Apollo training and has evolved to support ISS operations and future exploration missions.

  1. Inference of Altimeter Accuracy on Along-track Gravity Anomaly Recovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LI Yang


    Full Text Available A correlation model between along-track gravity anomaly accuracy, spatial resolution and altimeter accuracy is proposed. This new model is based on along-track gravity anomaly recovery and resolution estimation. Firstly, an error propagation formula of along-track gravity anomaly is derived from the principle of satellite altimetry. Then the mathematics between the SNR (signal to noise ratio and cross spectral coherence is deduced. The analytical correlation between altimeter accuracy and spatial resolution is finally obtained from the results above. Numerical simulation results show that along-track gravity anomaly accuracy is proportional to altimeter accuracy, while spatial resolution has a power relation with altimeter accuracy. e.g., with altimeter accuracy improving m times, gravity anomaly accuracy improves m times while spatial resolution improves m0.4644 times. This model is verified by real-world data.

  2. Ocean state indicators from MyOcean altimeter products

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Bessières


    Full Text Available The European MyOcean project ( provides observations of the ocean dynamic topography from altimeter measurements. Three specific indicators have been developed, based on altimeter data only, in order to monitor the ocean state. The first ocean indicator observes the positive and negative phases of the ENSO events in the tropical Pacific, the El Niño/La Niña events, since 1992. The second ocean indicator tracks the contracted or extended state of the Kuroshio Extension. The last ocean indicator is dedicated to the Ionian Basin in the Mediterranean Sea and permits separation of "zonal-cyclonic" state (1998–2005 and since 2011 up to now from the "anticyclonic" state (1993–1996 usually discussed in the literature. In addition, it allows identifying a third state in which both the anticyclonic circulation around the northern part of the basin and the strong zonal Mid-Ionian Jet co-exist (2008–2010.

  3. Geodetic Mobil Solar Spectrometer for JASON Altimeter Satellite Calibration (United States)

    Somieski, A.; Buerki, B.; Geiger, A.; Kahle, H.-G.; Becker-Ross, H.; Florek, S.; Okruss, M.

    Atmospheric water vapor is a crucial factor in achieving highest accuracies for space geodetic measurements. Water vapor causes a delay of the propagation time of the altimeter satellite signal, which propagates into errors for the determination of surface heights. Knowledge of the precipitable water vapor (PW) enables a tropospheric correction of the satellite signal. Therefore, different remote sensing techniques have been pursued to measure the PW continuously. The prototype Geodetic Mobil Solar Spectrometer (GEMOSS) was developed at the Geodesy and Geodynamics Laboratory (GGL, ETH Zurich) in cooperation with the Institute of Spectrochemistry and Applied Spectroscopy (ISAS) (Berlin, Germany). A new optical approach allows the simultaneous measurement of numerous single absorption lines of water vapor in the wide range between 728 nm and 915 nm. The large number of available absorption lines increases the accuracy of the absolute PW retrievals considerably. GEMOSS has been deployed during two campaigns in Greece in the framework of the EU-project GAVDOS, which deals with the calibration of the altimeter satellite JASON. During the overfly of JASON, the ground-based determination of PW enables the correction of the satellite measurements due to tropospheric water vapor. Comparisons with radiometer and radiosondes data allow to assess the accuracy and reliability of GEMOSS. The instrumental advancement of GEMOSS is presented together with the results of the campaigns carried out.

  4. The research on HRM model of geosciences engineering perambulation enterprise

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Firstly,this paper defines the definition of geosciences engineering perambulation enterprise,which belongs to the knowledgeable enterprise;then,it summarizes the general HRM model presented by other researchers,based on those models,this paper builds a new HRM model of geosciences engineering perambulation enterprise.

  5. Geoscience Education Research: A Brief History, Context and Opportunities (United States)

    Mogk, D. W.; Manduca, C. A.; Kastens, K. A.


    DBER combines knowledge of teaching and learning with deep knowledge of discipline-specific science content. It describes the discipline-specific difficulties learners face and the specialized intellectual and instructional resources that can facilitate student understanding (NRC, 2011). In the geosciences, content knowledge derives from all the "spheres, the complex interactions of components of the Earth system, applications of first principles from allied sciences, an understanding of "deep time", and approaches that emphasize the interpretive and historical nature of geoscience. Insights gained from the theory and practice of the cognitive and learning sciences that demonstrate how people learn, as well as research on learning from other STEM disciplines, have helped inform the development of geoscience curricular initiatives. The Earth Science Curriculum Project (1963) was strongly influenced by Piaget and emphasized hands-on, experiential learning. Recognizing that education research was thriving in related STEM disciplines a NSF report (NSF 97-171) recommended "... that GEO and EHR both support research in geoscience education, helping geoscientists to work with colleagues in fields such as educational and cognitive psychology, in order to facilitate development of a new generation of geoscience educators." An NSF sponsored workshop, Bringing Research on Learning to the Geosciences (2002) brought together geoscience educators and cognitive scientists to explore areas of mutual interest, and identified a research agenda that included study of spatial learning, temporal learning, learning about complex systems, use of visualizations in geoscience learning, characterization of expert learning, and learning environments. Subsequent events have focused on building new communities of scholars, such as the On the Cutting Edge faculty professional development workshops, extensive collections of online resources, and networks of scholars that have addressed teaching

  6. Machine learning in geosciences and remote sensing

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    David J. Lary; Amir H. Alavi; Amir H. Gandomi; Annette L. Walker


    Learning incorporates a broad range of complex procedures. Machine learning (ML) is a subdivision of artificial intelligence based on the biological learning process. The ML approach deals with the design of algorithms to learn from machine readable data. ML covers main domains such as data mining, difficult-to-program applications, and software applications. It is a collection of a variety of algorithms (e.g. neural networks, support vector machines, self-organizing map, decision trees, random forests, case-based reasoning, genetic programming, etc.) that can provide multivariate, nonlinear, nonparametric regres-sion or classification. The modeling capabilities of the ML-based methods have resulted in their extensive applications in science and engineering. Herein, the role of ML as an effective approach for solving problems in geosciences and remote sensing will be highlighted. The unique features of some of the ML techniques will be outlined with a specific attention to genetic programming paradigm. Furthermore, nonparametric regression and classification illustrative examples are presented to demonstrate the ef-ficiency of ML for tackling the geosciences and remote sensing problems.

  7. Machine learning in geosciences and remote sensing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David J. Lary


    Full Text Available Learning incorporates a broad range of complex procedures. Machine learning (ML is a subdivision of artificial intelligence based on the biological learning process. The ML approach deals with the design of algorithms to learn from machine readable data. ML covers main domains such as data mining, difficult-to-program applications, and software applications. It is a collection of a variety of algorithms (e.g. neural networks, support vector machines, self-organizing map, decision trees, random forests, case-based reasoning, genetic programming, etc. that can provide multivariate, nonlinear, nonparametric regression or classification. The modeling capabilities of the ML-based methods have resulted in their extensive applications in science and engineering. Herein, the role of ML as an effective approach for solving problems in geosciences and remote sensing will be highlighted. The unique features of some of the ML techniques will be outlined with a specific attention to genetic programming paradigm. Furthermore, nonparametric regression and classification illustrative examples are presented to demonstrate the efficiency of ML for tackling the geosciences and remote sensing problems.

  8. Geosciences Information for Teachers (GIFT) in Catalonia (United States)

    Camerlenghi, Angelo; Cacho, Isabel; Calvo, Eva; Demol, Ben; Sureda, Catalina; Artigas, Carme; Vilaplana, Miquel; Porbellini, Danilo; Rubio, Eduard


    CATAGIFT is the acronym of the project supported by the Catalan Government (trough the AGAUR agency) to support the activities of the EGU Committee on Education in Catalonia. The objective of this project is two-fold: 1) To establish a coordinated action to support the participation of three Catalan science teachers of primary and secondary schools in the GIFT Symposium, held each year during the General Assembly of the European Geosciences Union (EGU). 2) To produce a video documentary each year on hot topics in geosciences. The documentary is produced in Catalan, Spanish and English and is distributed to the Catalan science teachers attending the annual meeting organized by the Institute of Education Sciences and the Faculty of Geology of the University together with the CosmoCaixa Museum of Barcelona, to the international teachers attending the EGU GIFT Workshop, and to other schools in the Spanish territory. In the present-day context of science dissemination through documentaries and television programs there is a dominance of products of high technical quality and very high costs sold and broadcasted world wide. The wide spread of such products tends to standardize scientific information, not only in its content, but also in the format used for communicating science to the general public. In the field of geosciences in particular, there is a scarcity of products that combine high scientific quality and accessible costs to illustrate aspects of the natural life of our planet Earth through the results of the work of individual researchers and / or research groups. The scientific documentaries produced by CATAGIFT pursue the objective to support primary and secondary school teachers to critically interpret scientific information coming from the different media (television, newspapers, magazines, audiovisual products), in a way that they can transmit to their students. CataGIFT has created a series of documentaries called MARENOSTRUM TERRANOSTRA designed and

  9. Tracer Applications of Noble Gas Radionuclides in the Geosciences

    CERN Document Server

    Lu, Z -T; Smethie, W M; Sturchio, N C; Fischer, T P; Kennedy, B M; Purtschert, R; Severinghaus, J P; Solomon, D K; Tanhua, T; Yokochi, R


    The noble gas radionuclides, including 81Kr (half-life = 229,000 yr), 85Kr (11 yr), and 39Ar (269 yr), possess nearly ideal chemical and physical properties for studies of earth and environmental processes. Recent advances in Atom Trap Trace Analysis (ATTA), a laser-based atom counting method, have enabled routine measurements of the radiokrypton isotopes, as well as the demonstration of the ability to measure 39Ar in environmental samples. Here we provide an overview of the ATTA technique, and a survey of recent progress made in several laboratories worldwide. We review the application of noble gas radionuclides in the geosciences and discuss how ATTA can help advance these fields, specifically determination of groundwater residence times using 81Kr, 85Kr, and 39Ar; dating old glacial ice using 81Kr; and an 39Ar survey of the main water masses of the oceans, to study circulation pathways and estimate mean residence times. Other scientific questions involving deeper circulation of fluids in the Earth's crust ...

  10. Geoscience terminology for data interchange: the CGI Geoscience Terminology Work Group (Invited) (United States)

    Richard, S. M.; Gtwg, G.


    The Commission for the Management and Application of Geoscience Information (CGI), a Commission of the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS) has formed the Geoscience Terminology Working Group (GTWG, geoscience_terminology_ working_group.html) to unify vocabulary development efforts of the Multhes working group of the 1990s, the Multilingual Thesaurus Working Group (MLT) formed in 2003, and the Concept Definition Task Group formed in 2007. The workgroup charge is to develop, review, adopt, publish, and steward vocabularies and associated documentation for use in geoscience information systems. The group will develop liaisons with other semantic interoperability groups to ensure cross-domain interoperability. The objective is to create vocabularies that bind URIs to geoscience concepts, and allow linking between concepts in the CGI vocabularies and other vocabularies such as SWEET, GEMET, and the GCMD. Representations of the concepts use SKOS RDF/XML and a standardized vocabulary service that to enable navigating links to concepts, accessing definitions, and obtaining language-localized labels for concepts. The SISSvoc service developed by CSIRO Australia has been deployed for CGI vocabulary services. Vocabularies are currently constructed by gathering candidate terms in spreadsheet tables because these are easy for text editing and review. When the vocabulary is mature, it is migrated into SKOS, an RDF application for encoding concepts with identifiers, definitions, source information, standard thesaurus type relationships, and language-localized labels. Each vocabulary is 'shepherded' by a GTWG member, who is responsible for organizing a team to compile a draft vocabulary, present it for review by appropriate authorities, respond to review comments, and determine when the vocabulary is ready for adoption by a vote of the workgroup. The first meeting of the work group took place, hosted by VSEGEI in St

  11. Geospatial Technology and Geosciences - Defining the skills and competencies in the geosciences needed to effectively use the technology (Invited) (United States)

    Johnson, A.


    Maps, spatial and temporal data and their use in analysis and visualization are integral components for studies in the geosciences. With the emergence of geospatial technology (Geographic Information Systems (GIS), remote sensing and imagery, Global Positioning Systems (GPS) and mobile technologies) scientists and the geosciences user community are now able to more easily accessed and share data, analyze their data and present their results. Educators are also incorporating geospatial technology into their geosciences programs by including an awareness of the technology in introductory courses to advanced courses exploring the capabilities to help answer complex questions in the geosciences. This paper will look how the new Geospatial Technology Competency Model from the Department of Labor can help ensure that geosciences programs address the skills and competencies identified by the workforce for geospatial technology as well as look at new tools created by the GeoTech Center to help do self and program assessments.

  12. Analysis and interpretation of Cassini Titan radar altimeter echoes (United States)

    Zebker, Howard A.; Gim, Yonggyu; Callahan, Philip; Hensley, Scott; Lorenz, Ralph; Cassini Radar Team


    The Cassini spacecraft has acquired 25 radar altimeter elevation profiles along Titan's surface as of April 2008, and we have analyzed 18 of these for which there are currently reconstructed ephemeris data. Altimeter measurements were collected at spatial footprint sizes from 6-60 km along ground tracks of length 400-3600 km. The elevation profiles yield topographic information at this resolution with a statistical height accuracy of 35-50 m and kilometer-scale errors several times greater. The data exhibit significant variations in terrain, from flat regions with little topographic expression to very rugged Titanscapes. The bandwidth of the transmitted waveform admits vertical resolution of the terrain height to 35 m at each observed location on the surface. Variations in antenna pointing and changes in surface statistics cause the range-compressed radar echoes to exhibit strong systematic and time-variable biases of hundreds of meters in delay. It is necessary to correct the received echoes for these changes, and we have derived correction algorithms such that the derived echo profiles are accurate at the 100 m level for off-nadir pointing errors of 0.3° and 0.6°, for leading edge and echo centroid estimators, respectively. The leading edge of the echo yields the elevation of the highest points on the surface, which we take to be the peaks of any terrain variation. The mean value of the echo delay is more representative of the mean elevation, so that the difference of these values gives an estimate of any local mountain heights. Finding locations where these values diverge indicates higher-relief terrain. Elevation features are readily seen in the height profiles. Several of the passes show mountains of several hundred m altitude, spread over 10's or even 100's of km in spatial extent, so that slopes are very small. Large expanses of sub-100 m topography are commonplace on Titan, so it is rather smooth in many locations. Other areas exhibit more relief

  13. Taking Geoscience to Public Schools: Attitude and Knowledge Relationships (United States)

    Silliman, J. E.; Hansen, A.; McDonald, J.; Martinez, M.


    The Cabeza de Vaca Earthmobile Program is an ongoing project that is designed to strengthen geoscience education in South Texas public schools. It began in June 2003 and is funded by the National Science Foundation. This outreach program involves collaboration between Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi and four independent school districts in South Texas with support from the South Texas Rural Systemic Initiative, another NSF-funded project. Additional curriculum support has been provided by various local and state organizations. Across Texas, fifth grade students are demonstrating a weakness in geoscience concepts as evidenced by their scores on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills. As a result, fifth and sixth grade public school students from low-income school districts were selected to participate in this program. At this age students are already making decisions that will affect their high school and college years. The main purpose of this project is to encourage these students, many of whom are Hispanic, to become geoscientists. This purpose is accomplished by enhancing their geoscience knowledge, nurturing their interest in geoscience and showing them what careers are available in the geosciences. Educators and scientists collaborate to engage students in scientific discovery through hands-on laboratory exercises and exposure to state-of-the-art technology (laptop computers, weather stations, telescopes, etc.). Students' family members become involved in the geoscience learning process as they participate in Family Science Night activities. Family Science Nights constitute an effective venue to reach the public. During the course of the Cabeza de Vaca Earthmobile Program, investigators have measured success in two ways: improvement in students' knowledge of geoscience concepts and change in students' attitudes towards geoscience. Findings include significant improvement in students' knowledge of geoscience. Students also report more positive

  14. Community Efforts Bringing Research on Learning to the Geosciences (United States)

    Manduca, C. A.; Mogk, D. W.; Kastens, K. A.


    Individual, departmental and community efforts have all played a major role in developing a thriving research effort addressing thinking and learning in the geosciences. Community efforts have been effective in elevating the importance of the field, defining a research agenda, fostering collaborations with cognitive science and education communities, building capacity within the geosciences, and developing reviewer awareness of the importance and opportunities within geoscience education research. Important community efforts include a call for geoscience education research in the 1997 NSF report Geoscience Education: A Recommended Strategy and in the subsequent 2000 NSF report ‘Bridges: Connecting Research and Education in the Earth System Sciences’. A research agenda and supporting recommendations for collaboration and capacity building were jointly developed by geoscience educators, cognitive scientists and education researchers at the 2002 NSF/Johnson Foundation funded workshop Bringing Research on Learning to the Geosciences. This research agenda emphasized studies of geoscience expertise, learning pathways (and their challenges) that are critical to the development of that expertise, and materials and environments that support this learning, with a focus on learning in the field and from large data sets, complex systems and deep time, spatial skills, and the synthesis of understanding from multiple sources of incomplete data. Collaboration and capacity building have been further supported by the NAGT sponsored professional development program “On the Cutting Edge” with workshops bringing together cognitive scientists, educators and geoscientists on topics including developing on-line learning resources, teaching with visualizations, the role of the affective domain in geoscience learning, teaching metacognition, and teaching with data. 40 successful educational research proposals are attributed to participation in On the Cutting Edge. An NSF funded

  15. Unidata: A cyberinfrastrucuture for the geosciences (United States)

    Ramamurthy, Mohan


    Data are the lifeblood of the geosciences. Rapid advances in computing, communications, and observational technologies - along with concomitant advances in high-resolution modeling, ensemble and coupled-systems predictions of the Earth system - are revolutionizing nearly every aspect of our field. The result is a dramatic proliferation of data from diverse sources; data that are consumed by an evolving and ever-broadening community of users and that are becoming the principal engine for driving scientific advances. Data-enabled research has emerged as a Fourth Paradigm of science, alongside experiments, theoretical studies, and computer simulations Unidata is a data facility, sponsored by the NSF, and our mission is to provide the data services, tools, and cyberinfrastructure leadership that advance Earth system science, enhance educational opportunities, and broaden participation in the geosciences. For more nearly thirty years, Unidata has worked in concert with the atmospheric science education and research community to develop and provide innovative data systems, tools, techniques, and resources to support data-enabled science to understand the Earth system. In doing so, Unidata has maintained a close, synergistic relationship with the universities, engaging them in collaborative efforts to exploit data and technologies, and removing roadblocks to data discovery, access, analysis, and effective use. As a community-governed program, Unidata depends on guidance and feedback from educators, researchers, and students in the atmospheric and related sciences. The Unidata Program helps researchers and educators acquire and use earth-related data. Most of the data are provided in "real time" or "near-real time" - that is, the data are sent to participants almost as soon as the observations are made. Unidata also develops, maintains, and supports a variety of software packages. Most of these packages are developed at the Unidata Program Center (UPC), while a few others

  16. Satellite Applications for K-12 Geoscience Education (United States)

    Mooney, M.; Ackerman, S.; Lettvin, E.; Emerson, N.; Whittaker, T. M.


    This presentation will highlight interactive on-line curriculum developed at the Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies (CIMSS) at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. CIMSS has been on the forefront of educational software design for over two decades, routinely integrating on-line activities into courses on satellite remote sensing. In 2006, CIMSS began collaborating with education experts and researchers from the University of Washington to create an NSF-funded distance learning course for science teachers called Satellite Applications for Geoscience Education. This course includes numerous web-based learning activities, including a distance education tool called VISITview which allows instructors to connect with multiple students simultaneously to conduct a lesson. Developed at CIMSS to facilitate training of National Weather Service forecasters economically and remotely, VISITview is especially effective for groups of people discussing and analyzing maps or images interactively from many locations. Along with an on-line chat function, VISITview participants can use a speaker phone or a networked voice-enabled application to create a learning environment similar to a traditional classroom. VISITview will be used in two capacities: first, instructors will convey topics of current relevance in geoscience disciplines via VISITview. Second, the content experts will participate in "virtual visits" to the classrooms of the educators who take the course for full credit. This will enable scientists to interact with both teachers and students to answer questions and discuss exciting or inspiring examples that link satellite data to their areas of research. As long as a school has Internet access, an LCD projector and a speakerphone, VISITview sessions can be shared with an entire classroom. The geoscientists who developed material for the course and conducting VISITview lectures include a geologist from the University of Wisconsin-Richland, an

  17. The Performance of Altimeter Waveform Retrackers at Lake Baikal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuchan Yi


    Full Text Available At each of five fixed locations along the ground tracks of JASON-1 and ENVISAT, a repeat-track analysis of 1-Hz sea surface height (SSH data has been conducted to assess the performance of waveform retrackers over Lake Baikal in Siberia, Russia. This simple analysis of time series at each point location is needed to minimize the effect of the range correction artifacts in current Geophysical Data Record (GDR data products of radar altimeters in in-land areas. Using the retracked data available in the GDRs as the baseline, two retrackers are evaluated in terms of the number of valid data points produced and the degree of agreement with in-situ data of water level record. The threshold retrackers that are based on the amplitude of the robust OCOG algorithm (Offset Center of Gravity are found to perform the best in Lake Baikal.

  18. Design of A Pentagon Microstrip Antenna for Radar Altimeter Application

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. RamaDevi


    Full Text Available In the navigational applications, radar and satellite requires a device that is a radar altimeter. Theworking frequency of this system is 4.2 to 4.3GHz and also requires less weight, low profile, and high gainantennas. The above mentioned application is possible with microstrip antenna as also known as planarantenna. In this paper, the microstrip antennas are designed at 4.3GHz (C-band in rectangular andcircular shape patch antennas in single element and arrays with parasitic elements placed in H-planecoupling. The performance of all these shapes is analyzed in terms of radiation pattern, half power points,and gain and impedance bandwidth in MATLAB. This work extended here with designed in different shapeslike Rhombic, Pentagon, Octagon and Edges-12 etc. Further these parameters are simulated in ANSOFTHFSSTMV9.0 simulator.

  19. Remote sensing of Gulf Stream using GEOS-3 radar altimeter (United States)

    Leitao, C. D.; Huang, N. E.; Parra, C. G.


    Radar altimeter measurements from the GEOS-3 satellite to the ocean surface indicated the presence of expected geostrophic height differences across the the Gulf Stream. Dynamic sea surface heights were found by both editing and filtering the raw sea surface heights and then referencing these processed data to a 5 minute x 5 minute geoid. Any trend between the processed data and the geoid was removed by subtracting out a linear fit to the residuals in the open ocean. The mean current velocity of 107 + or - 29 cm/sec calculated from the dynamic heights for all orbits corresponded with velocities obtained from hydrographic methods. Also, dynamic topographic maps were produced for August, September, and October 1975. Results pointed out limitations in the accuracy of the geoid, height anomaly deteriorations due to filtering, and lack of dense time and space distribution of measurements.

  20. Recent progress in submarine geosciences in China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    JIN Xianglong


    In China submarine geosciences represents a newly established discipline of oceanography, focusing on the oceanic lithosphere, and its interface with the hydrosphere and biosphere. Recently, supported by the National High Technology Research and Development Program and other high-tech development projects, significant progress has been made in the development of advanced technologies and equipment. This en-ables the scientists in China to carry out explorations of the international seabed area in the Pacific Ocean and on the Southwest Indian Ridge. In addition, they have been active in the research activities associated the mid-ocean ridges and western Pacific marginal seas. It is anticipated that this research field will continue to be highly fruitful in the near future.

  1. Implementing Successful Geoscience Education and Outreach Efforts (United States)

    Braile, L. W.


    Successful geoscience Education and Outreach (E&O) efforts associated with a research program benefit from effective planning and a commitment by scientists/researchers to become more knowledgeable about and involved in education. Several suggested strategies have evolved based on experience in Earth science E&O with K-16 educators and students during the past 10 years. E&O programs and materials should be developed at appropriate levels ("start from where they're at") and utilize information, skills and topics that are most relevant to students and teachers. Hands-on and inquiry-based activities that teach or reinforce fundamental science understanding and skills, while introducing new topics, results and discoveries, are particularly effective. It is useful to design materials that can provide for a range of time commitment, level of technical skills, and effort, so that introductory to in-depth curriculum units can be implemented. Use of the Internet and working with teachers can be effective methods for dissemination and taking advantage of a "multiplying factor". Obtaining feedback and evaluation of the programs and developed materials, and connecting the materials to national or state education standards are also highly recommended. Most importantly, scientists should become more involved in the science education community. Attending and presenting papers at appropriate science education sessions or workshops, or state or national science teacher meetings (the annual National Science Teachers Association convention is an excellent place to start) can be a significant educational experience for the scientist/researcher. Effective geoscience E&O programs have significant potential for enhancing K-16 education and scientific literacy, and can help attract students to the sciences. Perhaps surprisingly, these efforts have substantial positive impact on the scientist/researcher as well.

  2. Utilizing Windows Azure to Support Geo-science Applications (United States)

    Xia, J.


    Windows Azure is a cloud computing platform and infrastructure, created by Microsoft for developing, deploying and managing applications through global networks. It provides Platform as a service (PaaS) which have been widely used in different domains to support scientific studies. This paper experiences the feasibility of utilizing Windows Azure to support different type of geo-science applications. Specially, the load balancing feature of Azure is used to address intensive concurrent access for geo-science data; cloud-based database is utilized for support Big Spatial data management; and the global deployment feature is used to improve the evaluation accuracy for geo-science services.

  3. Effects of tropospheric and ionospheric refraction errors in the utilization of GEOS-C altimeter data (United States)

    Goad, C. C.


    The effects of tropospheric and ionospheric refraction errors are analyzed for the GEOS-C altimeter project in terms of their resultant effects on C-band orbits and the altimeter measurement itself. Operational procedures using surface meteorological measurements at ground stations and monthly means for ocean surface conditions are assumed, with no corrections made for ionospheric effects. Effects on the orbit height due to tropospheric errors are approximately 15 cm for single pass short arcs (such as for calibration) and 10 cm for global orbits of one revolution. Orbit height errors due to neglect of the ionosphere have an amplitude of approximately 40 cm when the orbits are determined from C-band range data with predominantly daylight tracking. Altimeter measurement errors are approximately 10 cm due to residual tropospheric refraction correction errors. Ionospheric effects on the altimeter range measurement are also on the order of 10 cm during the GEOS-C launch and early operation period.

  4. IceBridge Paroscientific L0 Pressure Altimeter Raw Air Pressure (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The NASA IceBridge Paroscientific L0 Pressure Altimeter Raw Air Pressure (IAPRS0) data set contains air pressure readings taken over Antarctica using the...

  5. Preparing Future Geoscience Professionals: Needs, Strategies, Programs, and Online Resources (United States)

    Macdonald, H.; Manduca, C. A.; Ormand, C. J.; Dunbar, R. W.; Beane, R. J.; Bruckner, M.; Bralower, T. J.; Feiss, P. G.; Tewksbury, B. J.; Wiese, K.


    Geoscience faculty, departments, and programs play an important role in preparing future geoscience professionals. One challenge is supporting the diversity of student goals for future employment and the needs of a wide range of potential employers. Students in geoscience degree programs pursue careers in traditional geoscience industries; in geoscience education and research (including K-12 teaching); and opportunities at the intersection of geoscience and other fields (e.g., policy, law, business). The Building Strong Geoscience Departments project has documented a range of approaches that departments use to support the development of geoscience majors as professionals ( On the Cutting Edge, a professional development program, supports graduate students and post-doctoral fellows interested in pursuing an academic career through workshops, webinars, and online resources ( Geoscience departments work at the intersection of student interests and employer needs. Commonly cited program goals that align with employer needs include mastery of geoscience content; field experience; skill in problem solving, quantitative reasoning, communication, and collaboration; and the ability to learn independently and take a project from start to finish. Departments and faculty can address workforce issues by 1) implementing of degree programs that develop the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that students need, while recognizing that students have a diversity of career goals; 2) introducing career options to majors and potential majors and encouraging exploration of options; 3) advising students on how to prepare for specific career paths; 4) helping students develop into professionals, and 5) supporting students in the job search. It is valuable to build connections with geoscience employers, work with alumni and foster connections between students and alumni with similar career interests, collaborate with

  6. The pre-college teaching of geosciences in the USA (United States)

    Stewart, R.


    Most students in the USA learn about the earth in elementary and middle school, with most of the learning in middle schools (students who are 12 to 15 years old). A few students study geosciences in high school (ages 15 to 19). In some states, for example Texas, the high-school courses are being de-emphasized, and very few students take geoscience courses after they are 15 years old. As a result, most high-school graduates know little about such important issues as global warming, air pollution, or water quality. In the USA, the geoscience curriculum is guided by national and state standards for teaching mathematics and science. But the guidance is weak. Curricula are determined essentially by local school boards and teachers with some overview by state governments. For example, the State of Texas requires all students to pass standardized examinations in science at grades 5,10, and 11. The tests are based on the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills, the state's version of the national standards. The teaching of the geosciences, especially oceanography, is hindered by the weak guidance provided by the national standards. Because of the lack of strong guidance, textbooks include far too much material with very weak ties between the geosciences. As a result, students learn many disconnected facts, not earth system science. Improvements in the teaching of the geosciences requires a clear statement of the important in the geosciences. Why must they be taught? What must be taught? What are the major themes of geoscience research? What is important for all to know?

  7. Recruiting Minority Students to the Geosciences (United States)

    Marchese, P.; Cotten, D. E.; Cheung, T. D.; Johnson, L. P.; Austin, S.; Tremberger, G.; Bluestone, C.


    Queensborough Community College (QCC) and Medgar Evers College (MEC) of the City University of New York have been actively involved in recruiting primarily minority students to the Geosciences by involving students in research and by incorporating innovative and proven pedagogical methods into the classroom. Students at both colleges have been actively involved in doing research in Space and Earth Science. Students work during the summer under the mentorship of CUNY faculty conducting experiments and analyzing data. At the end of the summer students present findings at various science meetings. In the lecture room, the method of instruction was modified to emphasize active learning. Educational materials and pedagogical methods developed at QCC and other 4 year colleges was introduced to the predominantly minority student body at QCC and MEC. Many of these students did poorly at pre-college schools where lecture based learning is the chief method of instruction. It is not unexpected that many of them are having difficulty if the method of instruction has not changed at the postsecondary level. The intent of introducing active learning was to have students develop an appreciation of science, and have an increased understanding of relevant scientific principles. As a result of these activities student scores increased as compared to student scores in a more affluent college. Students also demonstrated increased conceptual understanding of the material, had higher self- efficacy scores, and seemed to enjoy the class better. Lower scoring students demonstrated the greatest benefit, while the better students had little (or no) changes.

  8. Geoscience in the news - sharing stories (United States)

    Redfern, Simon


    Schemes such as the British Science Association media fellowships and the AGU mass media fellowships offer an opportunity for active researchers to sit side by side with journalists at the news desk. Each can learn from the other, and the mutual benefits are often unexpected. Here, I reflect on my own experiences as a media fellow at the BBC, and consider how this opportunity has altered my own views on communicated my, and others', science. Geosciences have a particular advantage in such translation to a general audience. Interest in the natural environment, the origins of life, the planetary science of the Solar System as a whole, as well as topics in resource, energy, climate and geohazards is high among the public. There are advantages in being willing to act as a "translator" of discovery and an "interpreter" of natural events that, it could be argued, should be grasped to keep the relevance of our science high in the perceptions of tax payers and policy makers. By exercising these types of communications skills, new perspectives on one's own research may be attained.

  9. Effective geoscience pedagogy at the undergraduate level (United States)

    Warden, Kelsey

    This investigation used constructivist pedagogical methods within the framework of an introductory level undergraduate geoscience course to gauge both the changes in attitude and cognition of students. Pedagogy was modified in the laboratory setting, but maintained in the lecture setting and homework. Curriculum was also maintained in the lecture, but was changed in the laboratory to emphasize the large concepts and systems stressed in Earth Science Literacy Principles. Student understanding of these concepts and systems was strengthened by factual knowledge, but recall and memorization were not the goal of the laboratory instruction. The overall goal of the study was to build student understanding more effectively than in previous semesters such that the students would become Earth Science literate adults. We hypothesized that a healthy comprehension of the connections between the human population and Earth's systems would lead to improved cognition and attitude toward Earth Science. This was tested using pre- and post-testing of attitudes via an anonymous survey on the first and last days of the laboratory, student responses to the end-of-course evaluations, and student performance on early-semester and late-semester content testing. The results support the hypotheses.

  10. Developing a Science Commons for Geosciences (United States)

    Lenhardt, W. C.; Lander, H.


    Many scientific communities, recognizing the research possibilities inherent in data sets, have created domain specific archives such as the Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology ( and Though this is an important step forward, most scientists, including geoscientists, also use a variety of software tools and at least some amount of computation to conduct their research. While the archives make it simpler for scientists to locate the required data, provisioning disk space, compute resources, and network bandwidth can still require significant efforts. This challenge exists despite the wealth of resources available to researchers, namely lab IT resources, institutional IT resources, national compute resources (XSEDE, OSG), private clouds, public clouds, and the development of cyberinfrastructure technologies meant to facilitate use of those resources. Further tasks include obtaining and installing required tools for analysis and visualization. If the research effort is a collaboration or involves certain types of data, then the partners may well have additional non-scientific tasks such as securing the data and developing secure sharing methods for the data. These requirements motivate our investigations into the "Science Commons". This paper will present a working definition of a science commons, compare and contrast examples of existing science commons, and describe a project based at RENCI to implement a science commons for risk analytics. We will then explore what a similar tool might look like for the geosciences.

  11. Geoscience as an Agent for Change in Higher Education (United States)

    Manduca, C. A.; Orr, C. H.; Kastens, K.


    As our society becomes more aware of the realities of the resource and environmental challenges that face us, we have the opportunity to educate more broadly about the role of geoscience in addressing these challenges. The InTeGrate STEP Center is using three strategies to bring learning about the Earth to a wider population of undergraduate students: 1) infusing geoscience into disciplinary courses throughout the curriculum; 2) creating interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary courses with a strong geoscience component that draw a wide audience; and 3) embedding more opportunities to learn about the methods of geoscience and their application to societal challenges in courses for future teachers. InTeGrate is also bringing more emphasis on geoscience in service to societal challenges to geoscience students in introductory geoscience courses and courses for geoscience majors. Teaching science in a societal context is known to make science concepts more accessible for many learners, while learning to use geoscience to solve real world, interdisciplinary problems better prepares students for the 21stcentury workforce and for the decisions they will make as individuals and citizens. InTeGrate has developed materials and models that demonstrate a wide variety of strategies for increasing opportunities to learn about the Earth in a societal context that are freely available on the project website ( and that form the foundation of ongoing professional development opportunities nationwide. The strategies employed by InTeGrate reflect a systems approach to educational transformation, the importance of networks and communities in supporting change, and the need for resources designed for adaptability and use. The project is demonstrating how geoscience can play a larger role in higher education addressing topics of wide interest including 1) preparing a competitive workforce by increasing the STEM skills of students regardless of their major

  12. Native Geosciences: Strengthening the Future Through Tribal Traditions (United States)

    Bolman, J. R.; Quigley, I.; Douville, V.; Hollow Horn Bear, D.


    Native people have lived for millennia in distinct and unique ways in our natural sacred homelands and environments. Tribal cultures are the expression of deep understandings of geosciences shared through oral histories, language and ceremonies. Today, Native people as all people are living in a definite time of change. The developing awareness of "change" brings forth an immense opportunity to expand and elevate Native geosciences knowledge, specifically in the areas of earth, wind, fire and water. At the center of "change" is the need to balance the needs of the people with the needs of the environment. Native tradition and our inherent understanding of what is "sacred above is sacred below" is the foundation for an emerging multi-faceted approach to increasing the representation of Natives in geosciences. The approach is also a pathway to assist in Tribal language revitalization, connection of oral histories and ceremonies as well as building an intergenerational teaching/learning community. Humboldt State University, Sinte Gleska University and South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in partnership with Northern California (Hoopa, Yurok, & Karuk) and Great Plains (Lakota) Tribes have nurtured Native geosciences learning communities connected to Tribal Sacred Sites and natural resources. These sites include the Black Hills (Mato Paha, Mato Tiplia, Hinhan Kaga Paha, Mako Sica etc.), Klamath River (Ishkêesh), and Hoopa Valley (Natinixwe). Native geosciences learning is centered on the themes of earth, wind, fire and water and Native application of remote sensing technologies. Tribal Elders and Native geoscientists work collaboratively providing Native families in-field experiential intergenerational learning opportunities which invite participants to immerse themselves spiritually, intellectually, physically and emotionally in the experiences. Through this immersion and experience Native students and families strengthen the circle of our future Tribal

  13. A Next Generation Radar Altimeter: The Proposed SWOT Mission (United States)

    Fu, L. L.


    Conventional nadir-looking radar altimeter is based on pulse-limited footprint approach. Near a coast the pulse limited footprint is contaminated by land within the much larger radar footprint, causing data quality to decay within 10 km from a coast. In the open ocean, the instrument noise limits the detection of dynamic ocean signals to wavelengths longer than 70 km. Using the technique of radar interferometry, the proposed Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT) Mission would reduce instrument noise to resolve ocean signals to 15 km in wavelength over most of the open ocean without land contamination in the coastal zone. Sea surface height would be measured in two dimensions over a swath 120 km wide across the satellite's flight path. SWOT is under development as a joint mission of NASA and the French Space Agency, CNES, with contributions from the Canadian Space Agency and the UK Space Agency. The launch is baselined for 2020. An overview of the projected mission performance for oceanographic applications will be presented. SWOT would also measure the elevation of land surface water with hydrological applications.

  14. Improved interpretation of satellite altimeter data using genetic algorithms (United States)

    Messa, Kenneth; Lybanon, Matthew


    Genetic algorithms (GA) are optimization techniques that are based on the mechanics of evolution and natural selection. They take advantage of the power of cumulative selection, in which successive incremental improvements in a solution structure become the basis for continued development. A GA is an iterative procedure that maintains a 'population' of 'organisms' (candidate solutions). Through successive 'generations' (iterations) the population as a whole improves in simulation of Darwin's 'survival of the fittest'. GA's have been shown to be successful where noise significantly reduces the ability of other search techniques to work effectively. Satellite altimetry provides useful information about oceanographic phenomena. It provides rapid global coverage of the oceans and is not as severely hampered by cloud cover as infrared imagery. Despite these and other benefits, several factors lead to significant difficulty in interpretation. The GA approach to the improved interpretation of satellite data involves the representation of the ocean surface model as a string of parameters or coefficients from the model. The GA searches in parallel, a population of such representations (organisms) to obtain the individual that is best suited to 'survive', that is, the fittest as measured with respect to some 'fitness' function. The fittest organism is the one that best represents the ocean surface model with respect to the altimeter data.

  15. GIRAF 2009 - Taking action on geoscience information across Africa (United States)

    Asch, Kristine


    A workshop in Windhoek Between 16 and 20 March 2009 97 participants from 26 African nations, plus four European countries, and representatives from UNESCO, ICSU and IUGS-CGI, held a workshop at the Namibian Geological Survey in Windhoek. The workshop - GIRAF 2009 - Geoscience InfoRmation In Africa - was organised by the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR) and the Geological Survey of Namibia (GSN) at the Namibian Ministry for Mines and Energy and was mainly financed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), supported by the IUGS Commission for the Management and Application of Geoscience Information (CGI). The participants came to Namibia to discuss one of the most topical issues in the geological domain - geoscience information and informatics. A prime objective was to set up a pan-African network for exchanging knowledge about geoscience information. GIRAF 2009 builds on the results of a preparatory workshop organised by the CGI and funded by the IUGS, which was held in June 2006 in Maputo at the 21st Colloquium on African Geology - CAG21. This preparatory workshop concentrated on identifying general problems and needs of African geological institutions in discussion with representatives of African geological surveys, universities, private companies and non-governmental organisations. The GIRAF 2009 workshop used the results of this discussion to plan and design its programme Aims In detail the five aims of the GIRAF2009 workshop were: to bring together relevant African authorities, national experts and stakeholders in geoscience information; to initiate the building of a pan-African geoscience information knowledge network to exchange and share geoscience information knowledge and best practice; to integrate the authorities, national experts and experts across Africa into global geoinformation initiatives; to develop a strategic plan for Africa's future in geoscience information; to make Africa a

  16. [Lasers]. (United States)

    Passeron, T


    Lasers are a very effective approach for treating many hyperpigmented lesions. They are the gold standard treatment for actinic lentigos and dermal hypermelanocytosis, such as Ota nevus. Becker nevus, hyperpigmented mosaicisms, and lentigines can also be successfully treated with lasers, but they could be less effective and relapses can be observed. However, lasers cannot be proposed for all types of hyperpigmentation. Thus, freckles and café-au-lait macules should not be treated as the relapses are nearly constant. Due to its complex pathophysiology, melasma has a special place in hyperpigmented dermatoses. Q-switched lasers (using standard parameters or low fluency) should not be used because of consistent relapses and the high risk of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Paradoxically, targeting the vascular component of the melasma lesion with lasers could have a beneficial effect. However, these results have yet to be confirmed. In all cases, a precise diagnosis of the type of hyperpigmentation is mandatory before any laser treatment, and the limits and the potential side effects of the treatment must be clearly explained to patients. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  17. Lasers. (United States)

    Passeron, T


    Lasers are a very effective approach for treating many hyperpigmented lesions. They are the gold standard treatment for actinic lentigos and dermal hypermelanocytosis, such as Ota nevus. Becker nevus, hyperpigmented mosaicisms, and lentigines can also be successfully treated with lasers, but they could be less effective and relapses can be observed. However, lasers cannot be proposed for all types of hyperpigmentation. Thus, freckles and café-au-lait macules should not be treated as the relapses are nearly constant. Due to its complex pathophysiology, melasma has a special place in hyperpigmented dermatoses. Q-switched lasers (using standard parameters or low fluency) should not be used because of consistent relapses and the high risk of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Paradoxically, targeting the vascular component of the melasma lesion with lasers could have a beneficial effect. However, these results have yet to be confirmed. In all cases, a precise diagnosis of the type of hyperpigmentation is mandatory before any laser treatment, and the limits and the potential side effects of the treatment must be clearly explained to patients. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  18. Implementing the Next Generation Science Standards: Impacts on Geoscience Education (United States)

    Wysession, M. E.


    This is a critical time for the geoscience community. The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) have been released and are now being adopted by states (a dozen states and Washington, DC, at the time of writing this), with dramatic implications for national K-12 science education. Curriculum developers and textbook companies are working hard to construct educational materials that match the new standards, which emphasize a hands-on practice-based approach that focuses on working directly with primary data and other forms of evidence. While the set of 8 science and engineering practices of the NGSS lend themselves well to the observation-oriented approach of much of the geosciences, there is currently not a sufficient number of geoscience educational modules and activities geared toward the K-12 levels, and geoscience research organizations need to be mobilizing their education & outreach programs to meet this need. It is a rare opportunity that will not come again in this generation. There are other significant issues surrounding the implementation of the NGSS. The NGSS involves a year of Earth and space science at the high school level, but there does not exist a sufficient workforce is geoscience teachers to meet this need. The form and content of the geoscience standards are also very different from past standards, moving away from a memorization and categorization approach and toward a complex Earth Systems Science approach. Combined with the shift toward practice-based teaching, this means that significant professional development will therefore be required for the existing K-12 geoscience education workforce. How the NGSS are to be assessed is another significant question, with an NRC report providing some guidance but leaving many questions unanswered. There is also an uneasy relationship between the NGSS and the Common Core of math and English, and the recent push-back against the Common Core in many states may impact the implementation of the NGSS.

  19. Teaching Geosciences With Visualizations: Challenges for Spatial Thinking and Abilities (United States)

    Montello, D. R.


    It is widely recognized that the geosciences are very spatial disciplines. Their subject matter includes phenomena on, under, and above the Earth surface whose spatial properties are critical to understanding them. Important spatial properties of geoscience structures and processes include location (both absolute and relative), size, shape, and pattern; temporal changes in spatial properties are also of interest. Information visualizations that depict spatiality are thus critically important to teaching in the geosciences, at all levels from K-12 to Ph.D. work; verbal and mathematical descriptions are quite insufficient by themselves. Such visualizations range from traditional maps and diagrams to digital animations and virtual environments. These visualizations are typically rich and complex because they are attempts to communicate rich and complex realities. Thus, understanding geoscience visualizations accurately and efficiently involves complex spatial thinking. Over a century of psychometric and experimental research reveals some of the cognitive components of spatial thinking, and provides insight into differences among individuals and groups of people in their abilities to think spatially. Some research has specifically examined these issues within the context of geoscience education, and recent research is expanding these investigations into the realm of new digital visualizations that offer the hope of using visualizations to teach complex geoscience concepts with unprecedented effectiveness. In this talk, I will briefly highlight some of the spatial cognitive challenges to understanding geoscience visualizations, including the pervasive and profound individual and group differences in spatial abilities. I will also consider some visualization design issues that arise because of the cognitive and ability challenges. I illustrate some of these research issues with examples from research being conducted by my colleagues and me, research informed by

  20. YES Africa: Geoscience Projects for Development (GPD) (Strategy and Process) (United States)

    Barich, A.; Nkhonjera, E.; Venus, J.; Gonzales, L. M.


    For various reasons, Earth Science in Africa has been acareer path that has not been promoted or a preferred option. In January 2011, the YES Network in Africa launched the Network in Africa through a symposium. This took place at the University of Johannesburg, in conjunction with the Colloquium of Africa Geology in January 2011. The Symposium brought together young geoscientists from all regions of Africa to talk about their geoscience research that focused on geohazards and professional development within the African continent. The YES Africa Symposium also aimed to improve the participation of students in African geosciences issues and to also discuss how geoscience education in Africa can be promoted to attract more students to choose a career in the profession. The YES Africa Symposium resulted in ambitious short/long term projects. Symposium participants agreed unanimously that spreading awareness throughout the society about geological hazards, climate change, water management strategies and sustainable development remains a priority. As a direct result local projects are being developed by the YES Network's African National Chapters to develop a long-term geoscience taskforce within the continent. These projects will be developed by implementing student chapters in universities and strengthening the ties with local geoscience organizations and governments. Many YES Network African National Chapters have already taken the lead in developing their local projects, and some have been very successful in their efforts. Collaboration with the various YES Network National Chapters will be critical in developing a geo-hazard portal which links regional organizations and institutions together. This will help to disseminate geo-information more efficiently, and also to develop the next generation of young African geoscience students and early-career professionals. This presentation will detail a variety of innovative outreach methods used to connect with the public

  1. New Resources on the Building Strong Geoscience Departments Website (United States)

    Ormand, C. J.; Manduca, C. A.; MacDonald, H.


    The Building Strong Geoscience Departments program aims to foster communication and sharing among geoscience departments in order to allow for rapid dissemination of strong ideas and approaches. Sponsored by NAGT, AGI, AGU, and GSA, the project has developed a rich set of web resources and offered workshops on high-interest topics, such as recruiting students, curriculum development, and program assessment. The Building Strong Geoscience Departments website has a growing collection of resources, drawn from workshop discussions and presentations, showcasing how geoscience departments approach curriculum revision, student recruitment, and program assessment. Recruitment resources consist of specific examples of a wide variety of successful approaches to student recruitment from departments at a wide array of institutions. Curricular feature pages framing the process of curriculum development or revision and a collection of dozens of geoscience curricula, searchable by degree program name. Each curriculum in the collection includes a diagram of the course sequence and structure. Program assessment resources include a collection of assessment instruments, ranging from alumni surveys and student exit interviews to course evaluations and rubrics for assessing student work, and a collection of assessment planning documents, ranging from mission and vision statements through student learning goals and outcomes statements to departmental assessment plans and guidelines for external reviews. These recruitment strategies, curricula, and assessment instruments and documents have been contributed by the geoscience community. In addition, we are developing a collection of case studies of individual departments, highlighting challenges they have faced and the strategies they have used to successfully overcome those challenges. We welcome additional contributions to all of these collections. These online resources support the Building Strong Geoscience Departments Visiting

  2. On the recent elevation changes at the Flade Isblink Ice Cap, northern Greenland

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rinne, E.J.; Shepherd, A.; Palmer, S.; van den Broeke, M.R.; Muir, A.; Ettema, J.; Wingham, D.


    We have used Radar Altimeter 2 (RA‐2) onboard ESA’s EnviSAT and Geosciences Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) onboard NASA’s ICESat to map the elevation change of the Flade Isblink Ice Cap (FIIC) in northern Greenland. Based on RA‐2 data we show that the mean surface elevation change of the FIIC has bee

  3. GEOScan: a geoscience facility from space (United States)

    Dyrud, Lars P.; Fentzke, Jonathan T.; Cahoy, Kerri; Murphy, Shawn; Wiscombe, Warren; Fish, Chad; Gunter, Brian; Bishop, Rebecca; Bust, Gary; Erlandson, Bob; Bauer, Brian; Gupta, Om


    GEOScan is a grassroots effort, proposed as globally networked orbiting observation facility utilizing the main Iridium NEXT 66-satellite constellation. This will create a revolutionary new capability of massively dense, global geoscience observations and targets elusive questions that scientists have not previously been able to answer, and will not answer, until simultaneous global measurements are made. This effort is enabled by Iridium as part of its Hosted Payload Program. By developing a common sensor suite the logistical and cost barriers for transmitting massive amounts of data from 66 satellites configured in 6 orbital planes with 11 evenly spaced slots per plane is removed. Each sensor suite of GEOScan's networked orbital observation facility consists of 6 system sensors: a Radiometer to measure Earth's total outgoing radiation; a GPS Compact Total Electron Content Sensor to image Earth's plasma environment and gravity field; a MicroCam Multispectral Imager to measure global cloud cover, vegetation, land use, and bright aurora, and also take the first uniform instantaneous image of the Earth; a Radiation Belt Mapping System (dosimeters) to measure energetic electron and proton distributions; a Compact Earth Observing Spectrometer to measure aerosol-atmospheric composition and vegetation; and MEMS Accelerometers to deduce non-conservative forces aiding gravity and neutral drag studies. Our analysis shows that the instrument suites evaluated in a constellation configuration onboard the Iridium NEXT satellites are poised to provide major breakthroughs in Earth and geospace science. GEOScan commercial-of-the-shelf instruments provide low-cost space situational awareness and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance opportunities.

  4. Geoscience for society. 125th Anniversary volume

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nenonen, K.; Nurmi, P.A. (eds.)


    Our knowledge of Finnish geology and natural resources has considerably increased during the last few decades. Geological Survey of Finland - GTK has mapped the bedrock and Quaternary deposits, as well as mineral resources in great detail using modern geological, geochemical and geophysical techniques, so that Finland today has one of the best geological databases in the world. We have recently compiled countrywide datasets of seamless bedrock information at the scale of 1:200,000, and completed low-altitude airborne geophysical (200 m line spacing and 40 m terrain clearance), regional geochemical (80 000 samples), and reflection seismic surveys at the crustal scale and at high resolution on the main orepotential formations. Isotopic age determinations have been performed at GTK since the 1960s, and we now have accurate ages for about thousand samples, which is a key to studying the complex evolution of the Finnish Precambrian. GTK currently plays a vital role in providing geological expertise to the government, the business sector and the wider community. Specific responsibilities include the promotion and implementation of sustainable approaches to the supply and management of minerals, energy and construction materials, and to ensure environmental compliance through monitoring, assessment and remediation programmes. GTK also contributes to a wide range of international geoscience, mapping, mineral resources and environmental monitoring projects, and is active in developing multidisciplinary research programmes with universities, government agencies and stakeholders across related sectors. This 125th Anniversary Publication aims at elucidating, through a number of short articles, the current focus of research and development at GTK. In reaching the milestone of 125 years, we can state that our anniversary slogan, 'forever young', is justified by the vitality and increasing societal impact of the organization and our research focusing on sustainable

  5. Geoscience for society. 125th Anniversary volume

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nenonen, K.; Nurmi, P.A. (eds.)


    Our knowledge of Finnish geology and natural resources has considerably increased during the last few decades. Geological Survey of Finland - GTK has mapped the bedrock and Quaternary deposits, as well as mineral resources in great detail using modern geological, geochemical and geophysical techniques, so that Finland today has one of the best geological databases in the world. We have recently compiled countrywide datasets of seamless bedrock information at the scale of 1:200,000, and completed low-altitude airborne geophysical (200 m line spacing and 40 m terrain clearance), regional geochemical (80 000 samples), and reflection seismic surveys at the crustal scale and at high resolution on the main orepotential formations. Isotopic age determinations have been performed at GTK since the 1960s, and we now have accurate ages for about thousand samples, which is a key to studying the complex evolution of the Finnish Precambrian. GTK currently plays a vital role in providing geological expertise to the government, the business sector and the wider community. Specific responsibilities include the promotion and implementation of sustainable approaches to the supply and management of minerals, energy and construction materials, and to ensure environmental compliance through monitoring, assessment and remediation programmes. GTK also contributes to a wide range of international geoscience, mapping, mineral resources and environmental monitoring projects, and is active in developing multidisciplinary research programmes with universities, government agencies and stakeholders across related sectors. This 125th Anniversary Publication aims at elucidating, through a number of short articles, the current focus of research and development at GTK. In reaching the milestone of 125 years, we can state that our anniversary slogan, 'forever young', is justified by the vitality and increasing societal impact of the organization and our research focusing on sustainable

  6. Applications of Multidimensional Wavelet Filtering in Geosciences (United States)

    Yuen, D. A.; Vincent, A. P.; Kido, M.


    Today we are facing a severe crisis of being flooded with huge amounts of data being generated by higher-resolution numerical simulations , laboratory instrumentions and satellite observations. Since there is no way one can visualize the full data set, we must extract essential features from the data-set. One way of addressing this problem is to use mathematical filters , such as multidimensional wavelets. We present imaging results in the geosciences based on using multidimensional Gaussian wavelets as a filter. This approach has been applied to a wide-range of problems, which span from the nanoscale in mineral surfaces imaged by atomic force microscopy to hundreds of kilometers in geoidal undulations determined from satellite orbits or small-scale plumes in high Rayleigh number convection. Besides decomposing the field under consideration into various scales , called a scalogram, we have also constructed two-dimensional maps, delineating the spatial distributions of the maximum of the wavelet transformed quantity E-max and the associated local wave-number. We have generalized the application of multidimensional wavelets to quantify in terms of a two-dimensional map the correlation C for two multidimensional fields A and B. We will show a simple 2D isotropic wavelet-like transform for a spherical surface. We have analyzed the transformed geoid data with a band-pass filter in the spherical harmonic domain and have shown the equivalency of the two representations. This spherical wavelet-like filter can be applied also to problems in planetary science, such as the surface topography and geoid of other planetary bodies, like Mars.

  7. Global dynamic topography: geoscience communities requirements (United States)

    Dewez, T.; Costeraste, J.


    The advent of free-of-charge global topographic data sets SRTM and Aster GDEM have enabled testing a host of geoscience hypotheses. This is because they first revealed the relief of previously unavailable earth landscapes, enabled quantitative geomorphometric analyses across entire landscapes and improved the resolution of measurements. Availability of such data is now considered standard, and though resolved at 30-m to 90-m pixel, which is amazing seeing where we come from, they are now regarded as mostly obsolete given the sub-meter imagery coming through web services like Google Earth. Geoscientists now appear to desire two additional features: field-scale-compatible elevation datasets (i.e. meter-scale digital models and sub-meter elevation precision) and dispose of regularly updated topography to retrieve earth surface changes, while retaining the key for success: data availability at no charge. A new satellite instrument is currently under phase 0 study at CNES, the French space agency, to fulfil these aims. The scientific community backing this demand is that of natural hazards, glaciology and to a lesser extent the biomass community. The system under study combines a native stereo imager and a lidar profiler. This combination provides spatially resolved elevation swaths together with absolute along-track elevation control point profiles. Data generated through this system, designed for revisit time better than a year, is intended to produce not only single acquisition digital surface models, colour orthoimages and small footprint full-wave-form lidar profiles to update existing topographic coverages, but also time series of them. This enables 3D change detection with centimetre-scale planimetric precision and metric vertical precision, in complement of classical spectral change appoaches. The purpose of this contribution, on behalf of the science team, is to present the mission concepts and philosophy and the scientific needs for such instrument including

  8. Implementing virtual reality interfaces for the geosciences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bethel, W.; Jacobsen, J. [Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, CA (United States); Austin, A.; Lederer, M. [BP Exploration, Houston, TX (United States); Little, T. [Landmark Graphics Corp., Houston, TX (United States)


    For the past few years, a multidisciplinary team of computer and earth scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has been exploring the use of advanced user interfaces, commonly called {open_quotes}Virtual Reality{close_quotes} (VR), coupled with visualization and scientific computing software. Working closely with industry, these efforts have resulted in an environment in which VR technology is coupled with existing visualization and computational tools. VR technology may be thought of as a user interface. It is useful to think of a spectrum, ranging the gamut from command-line interfaces to completely immersive environments. In the former, one uses the keyboard to enter three or six-dimensional parameters. In the latter, three or six-dimensional information is provided by trackers contained either in hand-held devices or attached to the user in some fashion, e.g. attached to a head-mounted display. Rich, extensible and often complex languages are a vehicle whereby the user controls parameters to manipulate object position and location in a virtual world, but the keyboard is the obstacle in that typing is cumbersome, error-prone and typically slow. In the latter, the user can interact with these parameters by means of motor skills which are highly developed. Two specific geoscience application areas will be highlighted. In the first, we have used VR technology to manipulate three-dimensional input parameters, such as the spatial location of injection or production wells in a reservoir simulator. In the second, we demonstrate how VR technology has been used to manipulate visualization tools, such as a tool for computing streamlines via manipulation of a {open_quotes}rake.{close_quotes} The rake is presented to the user in the form of a {open_quotes}virtual well{close_quotes} icon, and provides parameters used by the streamlines algorithm.

  9. Research Reproducibility in Geosciences: Current Landscape, Practices and Perspectives (United States)

    Yan, An


    Reproducibility of research can gauge the validity of its findings. Yet currently we lack understanding of how much of a problem research reproducibility is in geosciences. We developed an online survey on faculty and graduate students in geosciences, and received 136 responses from research institutions and universities in Americas, Asia, Europe and other parts of the world. This survey examined (1) the current state of research reproducibility in geosciences by asking researchers' experiences with unsuccessful replication work, and what obstacles that lead to their replication failures; (2) the current reproducibility practices in community by asking what efforts researchers made to try to reproduce other's work and make their own work reproducible, and what the underlying factors that contribute to irreproducibility are; (3) the perspectives on reproducibility by collecting researcher's thoughts and opinions on this issue. The survey result indicated that nearly 80% of respondents who had ever reproduced a published study had failed at least one time in reproducing. Only one third of the respondents received helpful feedbacks when they contacted the authors of a published study for data, code, or other information. The primary factors that lead to unsuccessful replication attempts are insufficient details of instructions in published literature, and inaccessibility of data, code and tools needed in the study. Our findings suggest a remarkable lack of research reproducibility in geoscience. Changing the incentive mechanism in academia, as well as developing policies and tools that facilitate open data and code sharing are the promising ways for geosciences community to alleviate this reproducibility problem.

  10. Engaging teachers & students in geosciences by exploring local geoheritage sites (United States)

    Gochis, E. E.; Gierke, J. S.


    Understanding geoscience concepts and the interactions of Earth system processes in one's own community has the potential to foster sound decision making for environmental, economic and social wellbeing. School-age children are an appropriate target audience for improving Earth Science literacy and attitudes towards scientific practices. However, many teachers charged with geoscience instruction lack awareness of local geological significant examples or the pedagogical ability to integrate place-based examples into their classroom practice. This situation is further complicated because many teachers of Earth science lack a firm background in geoscience course work. Strategies for effective K-12 teacher professional development programs that promote Earth Science literacy by integrating inquiry-based investigations of local and regional geoheritage sites into standards based curriculum were developed and tested with teachers at a rural school on the Hannahville Indian Reservation located in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. The workshops initiated long-term partnerships between classroom teachers and geoscience experts. We hypothesize that this model of professional development, where teachers of school-age children are prepared to teach local examples of earth system science, will lead to increased engagement in Earth Science content and increased awareness of local geoscience examples by K-12 students and the public.

  11. Sustaining Public Communication of Geoscience in the Mass Media Market (United States)

    Keane, Christopher


    Most public communication about geoscience is either performed as a derivative of a research program or as part of one-off funded outreach activities. Few efforts are structured to both educate the public about geoscience while also attempting to establish a sustainable funding model. EARTH Magazine, a non-profit publications produced by the American Geosciences Institute, is a monthly geoscience news and information magazine geared towards the public. Originally a profession-oriented publication, titled Geotimes, the publication shifted towards public engagement in the 1990s, completing that focus in 1998. Though part of a non-profit institute, EARTH is not a recipient of grants or contributions to offset its costs and thus must strive to "break even" to sustain its operations and further its mission. How "break even" is measured in a mission-based enterprise incorporates a number of factors, including financial, but also community impact and offsets to other investments. A number of strategies and their successes and failures, both editorially in its focus on audience in scope, tone, and design, and from an operational perspective in the rapidly changing world of magazines, will be outlined. EARTH is now focused on exploring alternative distribution channels, new business models, and disaggregation as means towards broader exposure of geoscience to the widest audience possible.

  12. A topographic parameter inversion method based on laser altimetry

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    HUANG ChunMing; ZHANG ShaoDong; CHEN Xi


    A topographic parameter inversion method based on laser altimetry is developed in this paper,which can be used to deduce the surface vertical profile and retrieve the topographic parameters within the laser footprints by analyzing and simulating return waveforms.This method comprises three steps.The first step is to build the numerical models for the whole measuring procedure of laser altimetry,construct digital elevation models for surfaces with different topographic parameters,and calculate return waveforms.The second step is to analyze the simulated return waveforms to obtain their characteristics parameters,summarize the effects of the topographic parameter variations on the characteristic parameters of simulated return waveforms,and analyze the observed return waveforms of laser altimeters to acquire their characteristic parameters at the same time.The last step is to match the characteristic parameters of the simulated and observed return waveforms,and deduce the topographic parameters within the laser footprint.This method can be used to retrieve the topographic parameters within the laser footprint from the observed return waveforms of spaceborne laser altimeters and to get knowledge about the surface altitude distribution within the laser footprint other than only getting the height of the surface encountered firstly by the laser beam,which extends laser altimeters' function and makes them more like radars.

  13. Geosciences Information Network (GIN): A Distributed, Interoperable Data Network for the Geosciences (United States)

    Allison, L.; Gundersen, L. C.; Richard, S. M.; Dickinson, T. L.


    A coalition of the state geological surveys (AASG), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and other partners will receive NSF funding over the next 3 years under the INTEROP solicitation to start building a distributed, interoperable data network that will make thousands of data bases from the geological surveys and their partners available, searchable, and interoperable. This Geosciences Information Network (GIN) will focus on both spatial and analytical geologic data collected across the country for the past 150 years. Key components of the proposed network include: 1) catalog systems for data discovery; 2) service definitions that define interfaces for searching catalogs and accessing resources; 3) shared interchange formats to encode information for transmission; 4) data providers that publish information using standardized services defined by the network; and 5) client applications enabled to utilize information resources provided by the network. The GIN will integrate and utilize catalog resources that currently exist or are in development. We are working closely with the USGS National Geologic Map Database and its existing map catalog; with the USGS National Geological and Geophysical Data Preservation project, which is developing a metadata catalog for geoscience information resource discovery; and with the GEON catalog. Existing and emerging extensible mark-up languages such as GeoSciML, ChemML, and Open Geospatial Consortium sensor, observation and measurement MLs will provide the necessary interchange formats. Client application development will be fostered by collaboration with industry partners such as ESRI who's Geology Data Model for ArcGIS software is being designed to be compatible with GIN. The GIN project will focus on development of the remaining aspects of the system including: service definitions, technical assistance to data providers to implement the services and bring content online, and system integration. The Geosciences Information Network

  14. Teaching Structure from Motion to Undergraduates: New Learning Module for Field Geoscience Courses (United States)

    Pratt-Sitaula, B. A.; Shervais, K.; Crosby, C. J.; Douglas, B. J.; Crosby, B. T.; Charlevoix, D. J.


    With photogrammetry use expanding rapidly, it is essential to integrate these methods into undergraduate geosciences courses. The NSF-funded "GEodetic Tools for Societal Issues" (GETSI) project has recently published a module for field geoscience courses called "Analyzing High Resolution Topography with TLS and SfM" ( Structure from motion (SfM) and terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) are two valuable methods for generating high-resolution topographic landscape models. In addition to teaching the basic surveying methods, the module includes several specific applications that are tied to societally important geoscience research questions. The module goals are that students will be able to: 1) design and conduct a complex TLS and/or SfM survey to address a geologic research question; 2) articulate the societal impetus for answering a given research question; and 3) justify why TLS and/or SfM is the appropriate method in some circumstances. The module includes 6 units: Unit 1-TLS Introduction, Unit 1-SfM Introduction, Unit 2 Stratigraphic Section Survey, Unit 3 Fault Scarp Survey, Unit 4 Geomorphic Change Detection Survey, and Unit 5 Summative Assessment. One or both survey methods can be taught. Instructors choose which application/s to use from Units 2-4. Unit 5 Summative Assessment is flexibly written and can be used to assess any of the learned applications or others such as dinosaur tracks or seismic trench photomosaics. Prepared data sets are also provided for courses unable to visit the field. The included SfM learning manuals may also be of interest to researchers seeking to start with SfM; these are "SfM Guide of Instructors and Investigators" and "SfM Data Exploration and Processing Manual (Agisoft)". The module is appropriate for geoscience courses with field components such as field methods, geomorphology, geophysics, tectonics, and structural geology. All GETSI modules are designed and

  15. Interdisciplinary cooperation and studies in geoscience in the Carpathian Basin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcel MINDRESCU


    Full Text Available An interdisciplinary approach to geoscience is particularly important in this vast research field, as the more innovative studies are increasingly crossing discipline boundaries and thus benefitting from multiple research methods and viewpoints. Grasping this concept has led us to encourage interdisciplinary cooperation by supporting and promoting the creation of “meeting places” able to provide a framework for researchers and scholars involved in geoscience research to find common grounds for discussion and collaboration. Most recently, this was achieved by organizing the 1st Workshop on “Interdisciplinarity in Geosciences in the Carpathian Basin” (IGCB held in the Department of Geography at the University of Suceava (Romania, between the 18th and 22nd October 2012. This event brought together both an international group of scientists and local researchers which created opportunities for collaboration in research topics such as geography, environment, geology and botany, biology and ecology in the Carpathian Basin.

  16. National Geoscience Data Repository System: Phase 2 final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    The American Geological Institute (AGI) has completed Phase 2 of a project to establish a National Geoscience Data Repository System (NGDRS). The project`s primary objectives are to preserve geoscience data in jeopardy of being destroyed and to make that data available to those who have a need to use it in future investigations. These data are available for donation to the public as a result of the downsizing that has occurred in the major petroleum and mining companies in the US for the past decade. In recent years, these companies have consolidated domestic operations, sold many of their domestic properties and relinquished many of their leases. The scientific data associated with those properties are no longer considered to be useful assets and are consequently in danger of being lost forever. The national repository project will make many of these data available to the geoscience community for the first time. Phase 2 encompasses the establishment of standards for indexing and cataloging of geoscience data and determination of the costs of transferring data from the private sector to public-sector data repositories. Pilot projects evaluated the feasibility of the project for transfer of different data types and creation of a Web-based metadata supercatalog and browser. Also as part of the project, a national directory of geoscience data repositories was compiled to assess what data are currently available in existing facilities. The next step, Phase 3, will focus on the initiation of transfer of geoscience data from the private sector to the public domain and development of the web-based Geotrek metadata supercatalog.

  17. A framework for high-school teacher support in Geosciences (United States)

    Bookhagen, B.; Mair, A.; Schaller, G.; Koeberl, C.


    To attract future geoscientists in the classroom and share the passion for science, successful geoscience education needs to combine modern educational tools with applied science. Previous outreach efforts suggest that classroom-geoscience teaching tremendously benefits from structured, prepared lesson plans in combination with hands-on material. Building on our past experience, we have developed a classroom-teaching kit that implements interdisciplinary exercises and modern geoscientific application to attract high-school students. This "Mobile Phone Teaching Kit" analyzes the components of mobile phones, emphasizing the mineral compositions and geologic background of raw materials. Also, as geoscience is not an obligatory classroom topic in Austria, and university training for upcoming science teachers barely covers geoscience, teacher training is necessary to enhance understanding of the interdisciplinary geosciences in the classroom. During the past year, we have held teacher workshops to help implementing the topic in the classroom, and to provide professional training for non-geoscientists and demonstrate proper usage of the teaching kit. The material kit is designed for classroom teaching and comes with a lesson plan that covers background knowledge and provides worksheets and can easily be adapted to school curricula. The project was funded by kulturkontakt Austria; expenses covered 540 material kits, and we reached out to approximately 90 schools throughout Austria and held a workshop in each of the nine federal states in Austria. Teachers received the training, a set of the material kit, and the lesson plan free of charge. Feedback from teachers was highly appreciative. The request for further material kits is high and we plan to expand the project. Ultimately, we hope to enlighten teachers and students for the highly interdisciplinary variety of geosciences and a link to everyday life.

  18. Mean Sea Surface (mss) Model Determination for Malaysian Seas Using Multi-Mission Satellite Altimeter (United States)

    Yahaya, N. A. Z.; Musa, T. A.; Omar, K. M.; Din, A. H. M.; Omar, A. H.; Tugi, A.; Yazid, N. M.; Abdullah, N. M.; Wahab, M. I. A.


    The advancement of satellite altimeter technology has generated many evolutions to oceanographic and geophysical studies. A multi-mission satellite altimeter consists with TOPEX, Jason-1 and Jason-2, ERS-2, Envisat-1, CryoSat-2 and Saral are extracted in this study and has been processed using Radar Altimeter Database System (RADS) for the period of January 2005 to December 2015 to produce the sea surface height (hereinafter referred to SSH). The monthly climatology data from SSH is generated and averaged to understand the variation of SSH during monsoon season. Then, SSH data are required to determine the localised and new mean sea surface (MSS). The differences between Localised MSS and DTU13 MSS Global Model is plotted with root mean square error value is 2.217 metres. The localised MSS is important towards several applications for instance, as a reference for sea level variation, bathymetry prediction and derivation of mean dynamic topography.

  19. RADS Version 4: An Efficient Way to Analyse the Multi-Mission Altimeter Database (United States)

    Scharroo, Remko; Leuliette, Eric; Naeije, Marc; Martin-Puig, Cristina; Pires, Nelson


    The Radar Altimeter Database System (RADS) has grown to become a mature altimeter database. Over the last 18 years it is continuously being developed, first at Delft University of Technology, now also at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT).RADS now serves as a fundamental Climate Data Record for sea level. Because of the multiple users involved in vetting the data and the regular updates to the database, RADS is one of the most accurate and complete databases of satellite altimeter data around.RADS version 4 is a major change from the previous version. While the database is compatible with both software versions, the new software provides new tools, allows easier expansion, and has a better and more standardised interface.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. A. Z. Yahaya


    Full Text Available The advancement of satellite altimeter technology has generated many evolutions to oceanographic and geophysical studies. A multi-mission satellite altimeter consists with TOPEX, Jason-1 and Jason-2, ERS-2, Envisat-1, CryoSat-2 and Saral are extracted in this study and has been processed using Radar Altimeter Database System (RADS for the period of January 2005 to December 2015 to produce the sea surface height (hereinafter referred to SSH. The monthly climatology data from SSH is generated and averaged to understand the variation of SSH during monsoon season. Then, SSH data are required to determine the localised and new mean sea surface (MSS. The differences between Localised MSS and DTU13 MSS Global Model is plotted with root mean square error value is 2.217 metres. The localised MSS is important towards several applications for instance, as a reference for sea level variation, bathymetry prediction and derivation of mean dynamic topography.

  1. GEOS-3 ocean current investigation using radar altimeter profiling. [Gulf Stream surface topography (United States)

    Leitao, C. D.; Huang, N. E.; Parra, C. G.


    Both quasi-stationary and dynamic departures from the marine geoid were successfully detected using altitude measurements from the GEOS-3 radar altimeter. The quasi-stationary departures are observed either as elevation changes in single pass profiles across the Gulf Stream or at the crowding of contour lines at the western and northern areas of topographic maps generated using altimeter data spanning one month or longer. Dynamic features such as current meandering and spawned eddies can be monitored by comparing monthly mean maps. Comparison of altimeter inferred eddies with IR detected thermal rings indicates agreement of the two techniques. Estimates of current velocity are made using derived slope estimates in conjunction with the geostrophic equation.

  2. Promoting the Geosciences for Minority Students in the Urban Coastal Environment of New York City (United States)

    Liou-Mark, J.; Blake, R.


    The 'Creating and Sustaining Diversity in the Geo-Sciences among Students and Teachers in the Urban Coastal Environment of New York City' project was awarded to New York City College of Technology (City Tech) by the National Science Foundation to promote the geosciences for students in middle and high schools and for undergraduates, especially for those who are underrepresented minorities in STEM. For the undergraduate students at City Tech, this project: 1) created and introduced geoscience knowledge and opportunities to its diverse undergraduate student population where geoscience is not currently taught at City Tech; and 2) created geoscience articulation agreements. For the middle and high schools, this project: 1) provided inquiry-oriented geoscience experiences (pedagogical and research) for students; 2) provided standards-based professional development (pedagogical and research) in Earth Science for teachers; 3) developed teachers' inquiry-oriented instructional techniques through the GLOBE program; 4) increased teacher content knowledge and confidence in the geosciences; 5) engaged and intrigued students in the application of geoscience activities in a virtual environment; 6) provided students and teachers exposure in the geosciences through trip visitations and seminars; and 7) created community-based geoscience outreach activities. Results from this program have shown significant increases in the students (grades 6-16) understanding, participation, appreciation, and awareness of the geosciences. Geoscience modules have been created and new geosciences courses have been offered. Additionally, students and teachers were engaged in state-of-the-art geoscience research projects, and they were involved in many geoscience events and initiatives. In summary, the activities combined geoscience research experiences with a robust learning community that have produced holistic and engaging stimuli for the scientific and academic growth and development of grades 6

  3. Alliances for Undergraduate Research in the Geosciences Through Collaborative Recruitment (United States)

    Pandya, R.; Eriksson, S.; Haacker-Santos, R.; Calhoun, A.


    Undergraduate research is a key strategy for encouraging students to pursue graduate school and careers in science end engineering. In the geosciences, where participation by members of underrepresented groups is among the lowest of any science field, these programs must continue and strengthen their efforts to engage students from historically underrepresented groups. A significant limitation on our ability to engage students from historically underrepresented groups comes from the expense, in terms of time and resources, of promoting these career options to talented undergraduates considering a host of STEM careers. Another hurdle is our ability to match students with research projects tailored to their interests. Further complicating this is the challenge of matching students who have culturally motivated geographic constraints—for example, Native students who seek to serve their local community—to relevant opportunities. As a result, we believe that a number of highly qualified students never fully consider careers in the geosciences. To address these obstacles, we propose an alliance of undergraduate research programs in the geosciences. In this model, all members of the alliance would share recruiting, and students would submit a single application forwarded to all alliance members. The Alliance could offer applicants multiple research opportunities, from across the alliance, tailored to fit the applicant's needs and interests. This strategy has proven very effective in other fields; for example, the Leadership Alliance allows 32 member institutions to offer internships and fellowships through one central application process. SOARS and RESESS, programs in atmospheric science and geophysics, respectively, have done this co-recruiting for two years. There are many benefits to this type of alliance. First, it would allow programs to leverage and coordinate their recruiting investments. From our experience with SOARS and RESESS, much of the effort in

  4. The Need for an International Geoscience School Syllabus: Its Development and Publication (United States)

    King, C.


    International comparisons of school-level geoscience education across the world had shown great variability in the amount and content of the geoscience materials and in the ways in which it was taught. When this situation was discussed at meetings of organisations concerned with international school-level geoscience education in 2012, the decision…

  5. NAGT-GER: A Community of Practice to Support the Emerging Field of Geoscience Education Research (United States)

    Lukes, L.; LaDue, N.; Cheek, K.; Ryker, K.


    As the National Research Council noted in its 2012 report on discipline-based education research (DBER) in undergraduate science and engineering, in order to advance DBER as a field of inquiry, "a robust infrastructure is required to recognize and support [DBER] within professional societies." One way to develop such an infrastructure around geoscience education research is to create a community of practice within the broader geoscience education community. In recent years, the members of the National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT) have created two divisions to support the geoscience education needs of specific subpopulations of the geoscience community: the 2YC division, focusing on community college issues, and TED, focusing on teacher education. This year marks the first year of a new division within the National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT) focused on geoscience education research. The Geoscience Education Research division (GER) is committed to the promotion of high quality, scholarly research in geoscience education that improves teaching and learning in K-12, higher education, and informal learning environments. High quality DBER in geoscience requires the ability to connect current theories of teaching and learning with deep content-specific conceptual understanding. A community of practice like NAGT GER, has the potential to improve the quality of scholarly efforts in geoscience education by providing a forum for improving the collective knowledge and expertise of the geoscience education research community. Current division initiatives and efforts will be highlighted and time for dialogue on future directions will be included.

  6. The Gulf Stream front - A comparison between Seasat altimeter observations and theory (United States)

    Kao, T. W.; Cheney, R. E.


    A quantitative comparison is made between a model which gives a universal shape and width of the sea surface height rise anomaly across the Gulf Stream and six Gulf Stream altimeter profiles representing a range of conditions. The closeness of the fit obtained reinforces the validity of both the model and the role of satellite altimetry in ocean dynamics. Further comparisons of the data with the theories of Stommel (1966) and Charney (1955) show that the former is incomplete, accepting only one altimeter-derived parameter.

  7. On the recovery of gravity anomalies from high precision altimeter data (United States)

    Lelgemann, D.


    A model for the recovery of gravity anomalies from high precision altimeter data is derived which consists of small correction terms to the inverse Stokes' formula. The influence of unknown sea surface topography in the case of meandering currents such as the Gulf Stream is discussed. A formula was derived in order to estimate the accuracy of the gravity anomalies from the known accuracy of the altimeter data. It is shown that for the case of known harmonic coefficients of lower order the range of integration in Stokes inverse formula can be reduced very much.

  8. Developing A Large-Scale, Collaborative, Productive Geoscience Education Network (United States)

    Manduca, C. A.; Bralower, T. J.; Egger, A. E.; Fox, S.; Ledley, T. S.; Macdonald, H.; Mcconnell, D. A.; Mogk, D. W.; Tewksbury, B. J.


    Over the past 15 years, the geoscience education community has grown substantially and developed broad and deep capacity for collaboration and dissemination of ideas. While this community is best viewed as emergent from complex interactions among changing educational needs and opportunities, we highlight the role of several large projects in the development of a network within this community. In the 1990s, three NSF projects came together to build a robust web infrastructure to support the production and dissemination of on-line resources: On The Cutting Edge (OTCE), Earth Exploration Toolbook, and Starting Point: Teaching Introductory Geoscience. Along with the contemporaneous Digital Library for Earth System Education, these projects engaged geoscience educators nationwide in exploring professional development experiences that produced lasting on-line resources, collaborative authoring of resources, and models for web-based support for geoscience teaching. As a result, a culture developed in the 2000s in which geoscience educators anticipated that resources for geoscience teaching would be shared broadly and that collaborative authoring would be productive and engaging. By this time, a diverse set of examples demonstrated the power of the web infrastructure in supporting collaboration, dissemination and professional development . Building on this foundation, more recent work has expanded both the size of the network and the scope of its work. Many large research projects initiated collaborations to disseminate resources supporting educational use of their data. Research results from the rapidly expanding geoscience education research community were integrated into the Pedagogies in Action website and OTCE. Projects engaged faculty across the nation in large-scale data collection and educational research. The Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network and OTCE engaged community members in reviewing the expanding body of on-line resources. Building Strong

  9. Sustainable Agriculture as a Recruitment Tool for Geoscience Majors (United States)

    Enright, K. P.; Gilbert, L. A.; McGillis, A.


    Small-scale agriculture has exploded with popularity in recent years, as teenagers and college students gain interest in local food sources. Outdoor experiences, including gardening and farming, are often among the motivations for students to take their first geoscience courses in college. The methods and theories of small agriculture translate well into geologic research questions, especially in the unique setting of college campus farms and gardens. We propose an activity or assignment to engage student-farmers in thinking about geosciences, and connect them with geoscience departments as a gateway to the major and career field. Furthermore, the activity will encourage a new generation of passionate young farmers to integrate the principles of earth science into their design and implementation of more sustainable food systems. The activity includes mapping, soil sampling, and interviewing professionals in agriculture and geology, and results in the students writing a series of recommendations for their campus or other farm. The activity includes assessment tools for instructors and can be used to give credit for a summer farming internship or as part of a regular course. We believe reaching out to students interested in farming could be an important recruitment tool for geosciences and helps build interdisciplinary and community partnerships.

  10. Gender differences in recommendation letters for postdoctoral fellowships in geoscience (United States)

    Dutt, Kuheli; Pfaff, Danielle L.; Bernstein, Ariel F.; Dillard, Joseph S.; Block, Caryn J.


    Gender disparities in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, including the geosciences, are well documented and widely discussed. In the geosciences, despite receiving 40% of doctoral degrees, women hold less than 10% of full professorial positions. A significant leak in the pipeline occurs during postdoctoral years, so biases embedded in postdoctoral processes, such as biases in recommendation letters, may be deterrents to careers in geoscience for women. Here we present an analysis of an international data set of 1,224 recommendation letters, submitted by recommenders from 54 countries, for postdoctoral fellowships in the geosciences over the period 2007-2012. We examine the relationship between applicant gender and two outcomes of interest: letter length and letter tone. Our results reveal that female applicants are only half as likely to receive excellent letters versus good letters compared to male applicants. We also find no evidence that male and female recommenders differ in their likelihood to write stronger letters for male applicants over female applicants. Our analysis also reveals significant regional differences in letter length, with letters from the Americas being significantly longer than any other region, whereas letter tone appears to be distributed equivalently across all world regions. These results suggest that women are significantly less likely to receive excellent recommendation letters than their male counterparts at a critical juncture in their career.

  11. Student Enrollment in Geoscience Departments. 1982-1983. (United States)

    American Geological Inst., Washington, DC.

    Presented in table format are student enrollment data for geoscience disciplines at colleges and universities in the United States and Canada. Subfields for both countries include: geology; geophysics; oceanography; marine science; geological engineering; geophysical engineering; geochemistry; hydrology; mineralogy; paleontology; soil science;…

  12. Toward an automated parallel computing environment for geosciences (United States)

    Zhang, Huai; Liu, Mian; Shi, Yaolin; Yuen, David A.; Yan, Zhenzhen; Liang, Guoping


    Software for geodynamic modeling has not kept up with the fast growing computing hardware and network resources. In the past decade supercomputing power has become available to most researchers in the form of affordable Beowulf clusters and other parallel computer platforms. However, to take full advantage of such computing power requires developing parallel algorithms and associated software, a task that is often too daunting for geoscience modelers whose main expertise is in geosciences. We introduce here an automated parallel computing environment built on open-source algorithms and libraries. Users interact with this computing environment by specifying the partial differential equations, solvers, and model-specific properties using an English-like modeling language in the input files. The system then automatically generates the finite element codes that can be run on distributed or shared memory parallel machines. This system is dynamic and flexible, allowing users to address different problems in geosciences. It is capable of providing web-based services, enabling users to generate source codes online. This unique feature will facilitate high-performance computing to be integrated with distributed data grids in the emerging cyber-infrastructures for geosciences. In this paper we discuss the principles of this automated modeling environment and provide examples to demonstrate its versatility.

  13. On the merits of conversion electron Mossbauer spectroscopy in geosciences

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gunnlaugsson, H.P.; Bertelsen, P.; Budtz-Jørgensen, Carl;


    Described are some applications of conversion electron Mossbauer spectroscopy (CEMS) in geosciences. It is shown how easily this technique can be applied in existing Mossbauer laboratories to investigate natural samples. Some examples demonstrate the kind of information CEMS can give...... on the weathering history or mechanical properties of samples. The possible application of CEMS on Mars is discussed....

  14. Geoscience meets the four horsemen?: Tracking the rise of neocatastrophism (United States)

    Marriner, Nick; Morhange, Christophe; Skrimshire, Stefan


    Although it is acknowledged that there has been an exponential growth in neocatastrophist geoscience inquiry, the extent, chronology and origin of this mode have not been precisely scrutinized. In this study, we use the bibliographic research tool Scopus to explore 'catastrophic' words replete in the earth and planetary science literature between 1950 and 2009, assessing when, where and why catastrophism has gained new currency amongst the geoscience community. First, we elucidate an exponential rise in neocatastrophist research from the 1980s onwards. We then argue that the neocatastrophist mode came to prominence in North America during the 1960s and 1970s before being more widely espoused in Europe, essentially after 1980. We compare these trends with the EM-DAT disaster database, a worldwide catalogue that compiles more than 11,000 natural disasters stretching back to 1900. The findings imply a clear link between anthropogenically forced global change and an increase in disaster research (r 2 = 0.73). Finally, we attempt to explain the rise of neocatastrophism by highlighting seven non-exhaustive factors: (1) the rise of applied geoscience; (2) inherited geological epistemology; (3) disciplinary interaction and the diffusion of ideas from the planetary to earth sciences; (4) the advent of radiometric dating techniques; (5) the communications revolution; (6) webometry and the quest for high-impact geoscience; and (7) popular cultural frameworks.

  15. A Compilation and Review of over 500 Geoscience Misconceptions (United States)

    Francek, Mark


    This paper organizes and analyses over 500 geoscience misconceptions relating to earthquakes, earth structure, geologic resources, glaciers, historical geology, karst (limestone terrains), plate tectonics, rivers, rocks and minerals, soils, volcanoes, and weathering and erosion. Journal and reliable web resources were reviewed to discover (1) the…

  16. Embedding Data Stewardship in Geoscience Australia (United States)

    Bastrakova, I.; Fyfe, S.


    Ten years of technological innovation now enable vast amounts of data to be collected, managed, processed and shared. At the same time, organisations have witnessed government legislative and policy requirements for open access to public sector data, and a demand for flexibility in access to data by both machine-to-machine and human consumption. Geoscience Australia (GA) has adopted Data Stewardship as an organisation-wide initiative to improve the way we manage and share our data. The benefits to GA including: - Consolidated understanding of GA's data assets and their value to the Agency; - Recognition of the significant role of data custodianship and data management; - Well-defined governance, policies, standards, practices and accountabilities that promote the accessibility, quality and interoperability of GA's data; - Integration of disparate data sets into cohesive information products available online in real time and equally accessible to researchers, government, industry and the public. Although the theory behind data stewardship is well-defined and accepted and the benefits are generally well-understood, practical implementation requires an organisation to prepare for a long-term commitment of resources, both financial and human. Fundamentally this involves: 1. Raising awareness in the organisation of the need for data stewardship and the challenges this entails; 2. Establishing a data stewardship framework including a data governance office to set policy and drive organisational change; and 3. Embedding the functions and a culture of data stewardship into business as usual operations. GA holds a vast amount of data ranging from petabytes of Big Data to significant quantities of relatively small ';long tail' geoscientific observations and measurements. Over the past four years, GA has undertaken strategic activities that prepare us for Data Stewardship: - Organisation-wide audits of GA's data holdings and identification of custodians for each dataset

  17. Making a Difference: a Global Geoscience Initiative (United States)

    Nickless, E.


    Since 2009, an informal group, comprising four former board members of the International Year of Planet Earth, has been promoting the concept of a so-called Global Geoscientific Initiative. The GGI should: i.Be inclusive, involve a geoscience community, which is broad both in terms of discipline and nationality, and involve the social sciences; ii.Have a clear socio-economic context and global societal relevance; iii.Focus on a globally significant science theme and preferably involve global processes; iv.Attract the support of geoscientific communities, funding agencies, governments and other institutions in many countries, under the umbrella of UNESCO, ICSU and its geoscientific unions. A series of five town hall meetings have been held at which usually three invited, well-respected figures from the geoscientific community gave presentations. Those presentations were followed by discussion about the importance or otherwise of particular areas of science, and the need to engage better with legislators, policy makers, the media and the lay public. No one challenged the desirability of a large-scale programme that would attract researchers from many geoscientific disciplines and potentially involve the geo-unions. The discussions can be summarised under three broad themes: i.Mineral and hydrocarbon resources and their waste products; ii.Living with natural hazards; iii.Strategic Earth science in Africa through the Africa Alive corridors. During the course of development of the GGI, ICSU has issued a number of papers, most recently a strategic plan, covering the period 2012-2017, working parties have been undertaking foresight analysis and there have also been discussions concerning regional environmental change: human action and adaptation with the question "what does it take to meet the Belmont challenge?". The Belmont Forum brings together a number of funding agencies and could provide the resource to enable some initiative to go forward. More recently a programme

  18. The Non-traditional Student, a new Geoscience Resource (United States)

    Ferrell, R.; Anderson, L.; Bart, P.; Lorenzo, J. M.; Tomkin, J.


    The LSU GAEMP (Geoscience Alliance to Enhance Minority Participation) program targets non-traditional students, those without an undergraduate degree in geoscience, in its efforts to attract African American and Hispanic students from minority serving institutions (MSIs) to pursue careers in geology and geophysics. Faculty collaborators at nine MSIs (seven HBCUs and two HSIs) work closely with LSU faculty to advertise the program and to select student participants. The enthusiastic cooperation of the MSI Professors is crucial to success. The ideal student is a junior-level, high academic achiever with a major in one of the basic sciences, mathematics, engineering or computer science. A special summer course uses a focus on research to introduce basic geoscience concepts. Students are encouraged to design a cooperative research project to complete during their last year at their home institution and to apply for GAEMP graduate fellowships leading directly to an M.S. or Ph.D. in Geoscience. There are several reasons for the emphasis on these students 1. They have special knowledge and skills to use in graduate programs in geophysics, geochemistry, geobiology, etc. 2. Third-year students have demonstrated their ability to succeed in the academic world and are ready to select a graduate program that will enhance their employment prospects. 3. The MSIs, especially some of the physics programs at the collaborating HBCUs, provide well-trained, highly motivated graduates who have compiled excellent records in highly ranked graduate programs. This pool of talent is not available in the geosciences because most MSIs do not have geoscience degree programs. 4. This group provides a unique niche for focus as there are many programs concentrating on K-12 students and the recruitment of traditional majors. In the first year of GAEMP, 12 students participated in the summer program, six elected to pursue research projects and expressed interest in applying for the fellowships, and

  19. AMIDST: Attracting Minorities to Geosciences Through Involved Digital Story Telling (United States)

    Prakash, A.; Ohler, J.; Cooper, C.; McDermott, M.; Heinrich, J.; Johnson, R.; Leeper, L.; Polk, N.; Wimer, T.


    Attracting Minorities to Geosciences Through Involved Digital Story Telling (AMIDST) is a project funded by the Geoscience Directorate of the National Science Foundation through their program entitled Opportunities for Enhancing Diversity in Geosciences. This project centers around the idea of integrating place-based geoscience education with culturally sensitive digital story telling, to engage and attract Alaska’s native and rural children from grades 3 through 5 to geosciences. In Spring 2008 we brought together a team 2 native elders, a group of scientists and technicians, an evaluator, 2 teachers and their 24 third grade students from Fairbanks (interior Alaska) to create computer-based digital stories around the geoscience themes of permafrost, and forest fires. These two to four minutes digital narratives consisted of a series of images accompanied by music and a voice-over narration by the children. In Fall 2008 we worked with a similar group from Nome (coastal town in western Alaska). The geoscience themes were climate change, and gold in Alaska. This time the students used the same kind of “green screen” editing so prevalent in science fiction movies. Students enacted and recorded their stories in front of a green screen and in post-production replaced the green background with photos, drawings and scientific illustrations related to their stories. Evaluation involved pre and post project tests for all participants, mid-term individual interviews and exit-interviews of selected participants. Project final assessment results from an independent education evaluator showed that both students and teachers improved their geo science content knowledge about permafrost, forest fires, gold mining, and sea ice changes. Teachers and students went through a very steep learning curve and gained experience and new understanding in digital storytelling in the context of geologic phenomena of local interest. Children took pride in being creators, directors and

  20. The Quantitative Preparation of Future Geoscience Graduate Students (United States)

    Manduca, C. A.; Hancock, G. S.


    Modern geoscience is a highly quantitative science. In February, a small group of faculty and graduate students from across the country met to discuss the quantitative preparation of geoscience majors for graduate school. The group included ten faculty supervising graduate students in quantitative areas spanning the earth, atmosphere, and ocean sciences; five current graduate students in these areas; and five faculty teaching undergraduate students in the spectrum of institutions preparing students for graduate work. Discussion focused in four key ares: Are incoming graduate students adequately prepared for the quantitative aspects of graduate geoscience programs? What are the essential quantitative skills are that are required for success in graduate school? What are perceived as the important courses to prepare students for the quantitative aspects of graduate school? What programs/resources would be valuable in helping faculty/departments improve the quantitative preparation of students? The participants concluded that strengthening the quantitative preparation of undergraduate geoscience majors would increase their opportunities in graduate school. While specifics differed amongst disciplines, a special importance was placed on developing the ability to use quantitative skills to solve geoscience problems. This requires the ability to pose problems so they can be addressed quantitatively, understand the relationship between quantitative concepts and physical representations, visualize mathematics, test the reasonableness of quantitative results, creatively move forward from existing models/techniques/approaches, and move between quantitative and verbal descriptions. A list of important quantitative competencies desirable in incoming graduate students includes mechanical skills in basic mathematics, functions, multi-variate analysis, statistics and calculus, as well as skills in logical analysis and the ability to learn independently in quantitative ways

  1. Towards a global data network for the geosciences (United States)

    Allison, M. L.; Gundersen, L. C.; Jackson, I.; Hubbard, J.; Richard, S. M.


    Efforts around the world are converging towards creation of an integrated global digital data network for the geosciences based on common standards and protocols for data discovery and access, and a shared vision of a distributed, web-based, interoperable system. Commonalities include use of OGC-compliant standards and GeoSciML as the data interchange mechanism. The Geosciences Information Network (GIN; is linking databases in the U.S. state geological surveys (AASG) and the USGS. The USGS Data Integration Council is working to resolve the challenges in linking data resources from all of its four branches - geology, geography, water, and biology. GIN has been adopted as the data exchange mechanism for the U.S. Department of Energy-funded National Geothermal Data System (NGDS). All data generated by new DOE-funded geothermal projects will have to be available through the NGDS. Critical system components include a standardized catalog services to register and discover resources, web map service to display georeferenced images, and feature services to transport data. Open Geospatial Consortium service components are being used to meet all of these requirements. The Catalog Service for the Web (CSW) ISO 19115 profile provides services to search metadata registries and obtain results in a standard format. The GIN project is participating in the Energy Industry Metadata Standards Working Group, with representatives from the upstream petroleum industry, to develop an industry metadata profile that is compatible with metadata services for other geoscience domains. The OneGeology protocol to build an online digital geologic map of the world has 109 participating countries as of 1 September 2009, providing various nation-scale geologic maps using OGC WMS service ( These map services demonstrate the maturity of the WMS for production-level data publication. OneGeology - Europe (1G-E) is a European Commission project in which 29 national geological

  2. Geosciences Information Network (GIN): A modular, distributed, interoperable data network for the geosciences (United States)

    Allison, M.; Gundersen, L. C.; Richard, S. M.; Dickinson, T. L.


    A coalition of the state geological surveys (AASG), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and partners will receive NSF funding over 3 years under the INTEROP solicitation to start building the Geoscience Information Network ( a distributed, interoperable data network. The GIN project will develop standardized services to link existing and in-progress components using a few standards and protocols, and work with data providers to implement these services. The key components of this network are 1) catalog system(s) for data discovery; 2) service definitions for interfaces for searching catalogs and accessing resources; 3) shared interchange formats to encode information for transmission (e.g. various XML markup languages); 4) data providers that publish information using standardized services defined by the network; and 5) client applications adapted to use information resources provided by the network. The GIN will integrate and use catalog resources that currently exist or are in development. We are working with the USGS National Geologic Map Database's existing map catalog, with the USGS National Geological and Geophysical Data Preservation Program, which is developing a metadata catalog (National Digital Catalog) for geoscience information resource discovery, and with the GEON catalog. Existing interchange formats will be used, such as GeoSciML, ChemML, and Open Geospatial Consortium sensor, observation and measurement MLs. Client application development will be fostered by collaboration with industry and academic partners. The GIN project will focus on the remaining aspects of the system -- service definitions and assistance to data providers to implement the services and bring content online - and on system integration of the modules. Initial formal collaborators include the OneGeology-Europe consortium of 27 nations that is building a comparable network under the EU INSPIRE initiative, GEON, Earthchem, and GIS software company ESRI

  3. Teaching GeoEthics Across the Geoscience Curriculum (United States)

    Mogk, D. W.; Geissman, J. W.; Kieffer, S. W.; Reidy, M.; Taylor, S.; Vallero, D. A.; Bruckner, M. Z.


    Ethics education is an increasingly important component of the pre-professional training of geoscientists. Funding agencies (NSF) require training of graduate students in the responsible conduct of research, employers are increasingly expecting their workers to have basic training in ethics, and the public demands that scientists abide by the highest standards of ethical conduct. Yet, few faculty have the requisite training to effectively teach about ethics in their classes, or even informally in mentoring their research students. To address this need, an NSF-funded workshop was convened to explore how ethics education can be incorporated into the geoscience curriculum. Workshop goals included: examining where and how geoethics topics can be taught from introductory courses for non-majors to modules embedded in "core" geoscience majors courses or dedicated courses in geoethics; sharing best pedagogic practices for "what works" in ethics education; developing a geoethics curriculum framework; creating a collection of online instructional resources, case studies, and related materials; applying lessons learned about ethics education from sister disciplines (biology, engineering, philosophy); and considering ways that geoethics instruction can contribute to public scientific literacy. Four major themes were explored in detail: (1) GeoEthics and self: examining the internal attributes of a geoscientist that establish the ethical values required to successfully prepare for and contribute to a career in the geosciences; (2) GeoEthics and the geoscience profession: identifying ethical standards expected of geoscientists if they are to contribute responsibly to the community of practice; (3) GeoEthics and society: exploring geoscientists' responsibilities to effectively and responsibly communicate the results of geoscience research to inform society about issues ranging from geohazards to natural resource utilization in order to protect public health, safety, and economic

  4. Teaching Introductory Geoscience: A Cutting Edge Workshop Report (United States)

    Manduca, C.; Tewksbury, B.; Egger, A.; MacDonald, H.; Kirk, K.


    Introductory undergraduate courses play a pivotal role in the geosciences. They serve as recruiting grounds for majors and future professionals, provide relevant experiences in geoscience for pre-service teachers, and offer opportunities to influence future policy makers, business people, professionals, and citizens. An introductory course is also typically the only course in geoscience that most of our students will ever take. Because the role of introductory courses is pivotal in geoscience education, a workshop on Teaching Introductory Courses in the 21st Century was held in July 2008 as part of the On the Cutting Edge faculty development program. A website was also developed in conjunction with the workshop. One of the central themes of the workshop was the importance of considering the long-term impact a course should have on students. Ideally, courses can be designed with this impact in mind. Approaches include using the local geology to focus the course and illustrate concepts; designing a course for particular audience (such as Geology for Engineers); creating course features that help students understand and interpret geoscience in the news; and developing capstone projects to teach critical thinking and problem solving skills in a geologic context. Workshop participants also explored strategies for designing engaging activities including exploring with Google Earth, using real-world scenarios, connecting with popular media, or making use of campus features on local field trips. In addition, introductory courses can emphasize broad skills such as teaching the process of science, using quantitative reasoning and developing communication skills. Materials from the workshop as well as descriptions of more than 150 introductory courses and 350 introductory-level activities are available on the website:

  5. Automatic User Interface Generation for Visualizing Big Geoscience Data (United States)

    Yu, H.; Wu, J.; Zhou, Y.; Tang, Z.; Kuo, K. S.


    Along with advanced computing and observation technologies, geoscience and its related fields have been generating a large amount of data at an unprecedented growth rate. Visualization becomes an increasingly attractive and feasible means for researchers to effectively and efficiently access and explore data to gain new understandings and discoveries. However, visualization has been challenging due to a lack of effective data models and visual representations to tackle the heterogeneity of geoscience data. We propose a new geoscience data visualization framework by leveraging the interface automata theory to automatically generate user interface (UI). Our study has the following three main contributions. First, geoscience data has its unique hierarchy data structure and complex formats, and therefore it is relatively easy for users to get lost or confused during their exploration of the data. By applying interface automata model to the UI design, users can be clearly guided to find the exact visualization and analysis that they want. In addition, from a development perspective, interface automaton is also easier to understand than conditional statements, which can simplify the development process. Second, it is common that geoscience data has discontinuity in its hierarchy structure. The application of interface automata can prevent users from suffering automation surprises, and enhance user experience. Third, for supporting a variety of different data visualization and analysis, our design with interface automata could also make applications become extendable in that a new visualization function or a new data group could be easily added to an existing application, which reduces the overhead of maintenance significantly. We demonstrate the effectiveness of our framework using real-world applications.

  6. EarthCube Activities: Community Engagement Advancing Geoscience Research (United States)

    Kinkade, D.


    Our ability to advance scientific research in order to better understand complex Earth systems, address emerging geoscience problems, and meet societal challenges is increasingly dependent upon the concept of Open Science and Data. Although these terms are relatively new to the world of research, Open Science and Data in this context may be described as transparency in the scientific process. This includes the discoverability, public accessibility and reusability of scientific data, as well as accessibility and transparency of scientific communication ( Scientists and the US government alike are realizing the critical need for easy discovery and access to multidisciplinary data to advance research in the geosciences. The NSF-supported EarthCube project was created to meet this need. EarthCube is developing a community-driven common cyberinfrastructure for the purpose of accessing, integrating, analyzing, sharing and visualizing all forms of data and related resources through advanced technological and computational capabilities. Engaging the geoscience community in EarthCube's development is crucial to its success, and EarthCube is providing several opportunities for geoscience involvement. This presentation will provide an overview of the activities EarthCube is employing to entrain the community in the development process, from governance development and strategic planning, to technical needs gathering. Particular focus will be given to the collection of science-driven use cases as a means of capturing scientific and technical requirements. Such activities inform the development of key technical and computational components that collectively will form a cyberinfrastructure to meet the research needs of the geoscience community.

  7. GOLD: Building capacity for broadening participation in the Geosciences (United States)

    Adams, Amanda; Patino, Lina; Jones, Michael B.; Rom, Elizabeth


    The geosciences continue to lag other science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines in the engagement, recruitment and retention of traditionally underrepresented and underserved minorities, requiring more focused and strategic efforts to address this problem. Prior investments made by the National Science Foundation (NSF) related to broadening participation in STEM have identified many effective strategies and model programs for engaging, recruiting, and retaining underrepresented students in the geosciences. These investments also have documented clearly the importance of committed, knowledgeable, and persistent leadership for making local progress in broadening participation in STEM and the geosciences. Achieving diversity at larger and systemic scales requires a network of diversity "champions" who can catalyze widespread adoption of these evidence-based best practices and resources. Although many members of the geoscience community are committed to the ideals of broadening participation, the skills and competencies that empower people who wish to have an impact, and make them effective as leaders in that capacity for sustained periods of time, must be cultivated through professional development. The NSF GEO Opportunities for Leadership in Diversity (GOLD) program was implemented in 2016, as a funding opportunity utilizing the Ideas Lab mechanism. Ideas Labs are intensive workshops focused on finding innovative solutions to grand challenge problems. The ultimate aim of this Ideas Lab, organized by the NSF Directorate for Geosciences (GEO), was to facilitate the design, pilot implementation, and evaluation of innovative professional development curricula that can unleash the potential of geoscientists with interests in broadening participation to become impactful leaders within the community. The expectation is that mixing geoscientists with experts in broadening participation research, behavioral change, social psychology, institutional

  8. 14 CFR Appendix E to Part 43 - Altimeter System Test and Inspection (United States)


    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Altimeter System Test and Inspection E Appendix E to Part 43 Aeronautics and Space FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AIRCRAFT MAINTENANCE, PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE, REBUILDING, AND ALTERATION Pt. 43, App. E Appendix E to...

  9. Integrating geoscience and Native American experiences through a multi-state geoscience field trip for high school students (United States)

    Kelso, P. R.; Brown, L. M.; Spencer, M.; Sabatine, S.; Goetz, E. R.


    Lake Superior State University (LSSU) developed the GRANITE (Geological Reasoning And Natives Investigating The Earth) to engage high school students in the geosciences. The GRANITE program's target audience is Native American high school students and other populations underrepresented in the geosciences. Through the GRANITE program students undertake a variety of field and laboratory geosciences activities that culminates in a two week summer geoscience field experience during which they travel from Michigan to Wyoming. The sites students visit were selected because of their interesting and diverse geologic features and because in many cases they have special significance to Native American communities. Examples of the processes and localities studied by GRANITE students include igneous processes at Bear Butte, SD (Mato Paha) and Devil's Tower, WY (Mato Tipila); sedimentary processes in the Badlands, SD (Mako Sica) and Black Hills, SD (Paha Sapa); karst processes at Wind Cave, SD (Wasun Niye) and Vore Buffalo Jump; structural processes at Van Hise rock, WI and Dillon normal fault Badlands, SD; hydrologic and laucustrine processes along the Great Lakes and at the Fond du Lac Reservation, MN; fluvial processes along the Mississippi and Missouri rivers; geologic resources at the Homestake Mine, SD and Champion Mine, MI; and metamorphic processes at Pipestone, MN and Baraboo, WI. Through the GRANITE experience students develop an understanding of how geoscience is an important part of their lives, their communities and the world around them. The GRANITE program also promotes each student's growth and confidence to attend college and stresses the importance of taking challenging math and science courses in high school. Geoscience career opportunities are discussed at specific geologic localities and through general discussions. GRANITE students learn geosciences concepts and their application to Native communities and society in general through activities and

  10. PROGRESS (PROmoting Geoscience Research Education and SuccesS): a novel mentoring program for retaining undergraduate women in the geosciences (United States)

    Clinton, Sandra; Adams, Amanda; Barnes, Rebecca; Bloodhart, Brittany; Bowker, Cheryl; Burt, Melissa; Godfrey, Elaine; Henderson, Heather; Hernandez, Paul; Pollack, Ilana; Sample McMeeking, Laura Beth; Sayers, Jennifer; Fischer, Emily


    Women still remain underrepresented in many areas of the geosciences, and this underrepresentation often begins early in their university career. In 2015, an interdisciplinary team including expertise in the geosciences (multiple sub-disciplines), psychology, education and STEM persistence began a project focused on understanding whether mentoring can increase the interest, persistence, and achievement of undergraduate women in geoscience fields. The developed program (PROGRESS) focuses on mentoring undergraduate female students, starting in their 1st and 2nd year, from two geographically disparate areas of the United States: the Carolinas in the southeastern part of the United States and the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains in the western part of the United States. The two regions were chosen due to their different student demographics, as well as the differences in the number of working female geoscientists in the region. The mentoring program includes a weekend workshop, access to professional women across geoscience fields, and both in-person and virtual peer networks. Four cohorts of students were recruited and participated in our professional development workshops (88 participants in Fall 2015 and 94 participants in Fall 2016). Components of the workshops included perceptions of the geosciences, women in STEM misconceptions, identifying personal strengths, coping strategies, and skills on building their own personal network. The web-platform (, designed to enable peer-mentoring and provide resources, was launched in the fall of 2015 and is used by both cohorts in conjunction with social media platforms. We will present an overview of the major components of the program, discuss lessons learned during 2015 that were applied to 2016, and share preliminary analyses of surveys and interviews with study participants from the first two years of a five-year longitudinal study that follows PROGRESS participants and a control group.

  11. Using Cloud-Hosted Real-time Data Services for the Geosciences (CHORDS) in a range of geoscience applications (United States)

    Daniels, M. D.; Kerkez, B.; Chandrasekar, V.; Graves, S. J.; Stamps, D. S.; Dye, M. J.; Keiser, K.; Martin, C. L.; Gooch, S. R.


    Cloud-Hosted Real-time Data Services for the Geosciences, or CHORDS, addresses the ever-increasing importance of real-time scientific data, particularly in mission critical scenarios, where informed decisions must be made rapidly. Part of the broader EarthCube initiative, CHORDS seeks to investigate the role of real-time data in the geosciences. Many of the phenomenon occurring within the geosciences, ranging from hurricanes and severe weather, to earthquakes, volcanoes and floods, can benefit from better handling of real-time data. The National Science Foundation funds many small teams of researchers residing at Universities whose currently inaccessible measurements could contribute to a better understanding of these phenomenon in order to ultimately improve forecasts and predictions. This lack of easy accessibility prohibits advanced algorithm and workflow development that could be initiated or enhanced by these data streams. Often the development of tools for the broad dissemination of their valuable real-time data is a large IT overhead from a pure scientific perspective, and could benefit from an easy to use, scalable, cloud-based solution to facilitate access. CHORDS proposes to make a very diverse suite of real-time data available to the broader geosciences community in order to allow innovative new science in these areas to thrive. We highlight the recently developed CHORDS portal tools and processing systems aimed at addressing some of the gaps in handling real-time data, particularly in the provisioning of data from the "long-tail" scientific community through a simple interface deployed in the cloud. Examples shown include hydrology, atmosphere and solid earth sensors. Broad use of the CHORDS framework will expand the role of real-time data within the geosciences, and enhance the potential of streaming data sources to enable adaptive experimentation and real-time hypothesis testing. CHORDS enables real-time data to be discovered and accessed using

  12. Simulation of the satellite radar altimeter sea ice thickness retrieval uncertainty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. T. Tonboe


    Full Text Available Although it is well known that radar waves penetrate into snow and sea ice, the exact mechanisms for radar-altimeter scattering and its link to the depth of the effective scattering surface from sea ice are still unknown. Previously proposed mechanisms linked the snow ice interface, i.e. the dominating scattering horizon, directly with the depth of the effective scattering surface. However, simulations using a multilayer radar scattering model show that the effective scattering surface is affected by snow-cover and ice properties. With the coming Cryosat-2 (planned launch 2009 satellite radar altimeter it is proposed that sea ice thickness can be derived by measuring its freeboard. In this study we evaluate the radar altimeter sea ice thickness retrieval uncertainty in terms of floe buoyancy, radar penetration and ice type distribution using both a scattering model and ''Archimedes' principle''. The effect of the snow cover on the floe buoyancy and the radar penetration and on the ice cover spatial and temporal variability is assessed from field campaign measurements in the Arctic and Antarctic. In addition to these well known uncertainties we use high resolution RADARSAT SAR data to simulate errors due to the variability of the effective scattering surface as a result of the sub-footprint spatial backscatter and elevation distribution sometimes called preferential sampling. In particular in areas where ridges represent a significant part of the ice volume (e.g. the Lincoln Sea the simulated altimeter thickness estimate is lower than the real average footprint thickness. This means that the errors are large, yet manageable if the relevant quantities are known a priori. A discussion of the radar altimeter ice thickness retrieval uncertainties concludes the paper.

  13. Simulation of the satellite radar altimeter sea ice thickness retrieval uncertainty (United States)

    Tonboe, R. T.; Pedersen, L. T.; Haas, C.


    Although it is well known that radar waves penetrate into snow and sea ice, the exact mechanisms for radar-altimeter scattering and its link to the depth of the effective scattering surface from sea ice are still unknown. Previously proposed mechanisms linked the snow ice interface, i.e. the dominating scattering horizon, directly with the depth of the effective scattering surface. However, simulations using a multilayer radar scattering model show that the effective scattering surface is affected by snow-cover and ice properties. With the coming Cryosat-2 (planned launch 2009) satellite radar altimeter it is proposed that sea ice thickness can be derived by measuring its freeboard. In this study we evaluate the radar altimeter sea ice thickness retrieval uncertainty in terms of floe buoyancy, radar penetration and ice type distribution using both a scattering model and ''Archimedes' principle''. The effect of the snow cover on the floe buoyancy and the radar penetration and on the ice cover spatial and temporal variability is assessed from field campaign measurements in the Arctic and Antarctic. In addition to these well known uncertainties we use high resolution RADARSAT SAR data to simulate errors due to the variability of the effective scattering surface as a result of the sub-footprint spatial backscatter and elevation distribution sometimes called preferential sampling. In particular in areas where ridges represent a significant part of the ice volume (e.g. the Lincoln Sea) the simulated altimeter thickness estimate is lower than the real average footprint thickness. This means that the errors are large, yet manageable if the relevant quantities are known a priori. A discussion of the radar altimeter ice thickness retrieval uncertainties concludes the paper.

  14. How Accessible Are the Geosciences? a Study of Professionally Held Perceptions and What They Mean for the Future of Geoscience Workforce Development (United States)

    Atchison, C.; Libarkin, J. C.


    Individuals with disabilities are not entering pathways leading to the geoscience workforce; the reasons for which continue to elude access-focused geoscience educators. While research has focused on barriers individuals face entering into STEM disciplines, very little research has considered the role that practitioner perceptions play in limiting access and accommodation to scientific disciplines. The authors argue that changing the perceptions within the geoscience community is an important step to removing barriers to entry into the myriad fields that make up the geosciences. This paper reports on an investigation of the perceptions that geoscientist practitioners hold about opportunities for engagement in geoscience careers for people with disabilities. These perspectives were collected through three separate iterations of surveys at three professional geoscience meetings in the US and Australia between 2011 and 2012. Respondents were asked to indicate the extent to which individuals with specific types of disabilities would be able to perform various geoscientific tasks. The information obtained from these surveys provides an initial step in engaging the larger geoscience community in a necessary discussion of minimizing the barriers of access to include students and professionals with disabilities. The results imply that a majority of the geoscience community believes that accessible opportunities exist for inclusion regardless of disability. This and other findings suggest that people with disabilities are viewed as viable professionals once in the geosciences, but the pathways into the discipline are prohibitive. Perceptions of how individuals gain entry into the field are at odds with perceptions of accessibility. This presentation will discuss the common geoscientist perspectives of access and inclusion in the geoscience discipline and how these results might impact the future of the geoscience workforce pathway for individuals with disabilities.

  15. The silent buzz of geosciences: the challenge of geosciences communication in the Italian framework (United States)

    Rapisardi, Elena; Di Franco, Sabina; Giardino, Marco


    environmental dynamics and their interaction with human activity (preparedness). We suspect, that in the Italian framework, this raises from a sort of original sin: a "resistance" to science, that, for people with little or poor scientific knowledge, swings between pseudoscientific simplifications (which, unfortunately, web is variously "dotted" [Quattrociocchi et al. 2014]) and, as the sociologist Franco Ferrarotti would say, pre-scientific traditions [Peppoloni, 2011]. The "logos" of geology and the geological "narrative" are of fundamental importance in the Anthropocene, allowing to shift the focus back on the human/environment interaction. Geologists are often ignored, as bearers of uncomfortable messages, especially in a country where there is no longer a National Geological Survey, but it is unquestionable the importance of Earth Sciences and the social role of the geologist (geoethics) for Disaster Resilience. This is the next challenge of Geosciences, and of the whole community of geoscientists. Develop a coordinated communication approach for geosciences as an ethical imperative, and also as a pre-requisite to risk and emergency communication: geologists and geology are the authoritative interpreters of natural processes and risk, holders of scientific knowledge that if explained and shared allow people and decision makers to better cope with risks, and to enable Disaster Resilience.

  16. Recently Identified Changes to the Demographics of the Current and Future Geoscience Workforce (United States)

    Wilson, C. E.; Keane, C. M.; Houlton, H. R.


    The American Geosciences Institute's (AGI) Geoscience Workforce Program collects and analyzes data pertaining to the changes in the supply, demand, and training of the geoscience workforce. Much of these trends are displayed in detail in AGI's Status of the Geoscience Workforce reports. In May, AGI released the Status of the Geoscience Workforce 2014, which updates these trends since the 2011 edition of this report. These updates highlight areas of change in the education of future geoscientists from K-12 through graduate school, the transition of geoscience graduates into early-career geoscientists, the dynamics of the current geoscience workforce, and the future predictions of the changes in the availability of geoscience jobs. Some examples of these changes include the increase in the number of states that will allow a high school course of earth sciences as a credit for graduation and the increasing importance of two-year college students as a talent pool for the geosciences, with over 25% of geoscience bachelor's graduates attending a two-year college for at least a semester. The continued increase in field camp hinted that these programs are at or reaching capacity. The overall number of faculty and research staff at four-year institutions increased slightly, but the percentages of academics in tenure-track positions continued to slowly decrease since 2009. However, the percentage of female faculty rose in 2013 for all tenure-track positions. Major geoscience industries, such as petroleum and mining, have seen an influx of early-career geoscientists. Demographic trends in the various industries in the geoscience workforce forecasted a shortage of approximately 135,000 geoscientists in the next decade—a decrease from the previously predicted shortage of 150,000 geoscientists. These changes and other changes identified in the Status of the Geoscience Workforce will be addressed in this talk.

  17. Post-Secondary Education and Diversity in the Geosciences: The Need for Innovative Courses and Curricula (United States)

    Huntoon, J. E.; Lane, M.


    Enrollments in bachelor's-level degree programs in the geosciences are decreasing nationwide. It seems clear that it will be difficult to reverse this falling trend by teaching the `same old' content in the `same old' way. Innovative geoscience instructors are already revising both content and pedagogy, particularly for introductory-level courses that reach large audiences of potential geoscience majors. As these courses are updated, it is critical that practices contributing to increased diversity in the geosciences are incorporated. The geosciences currently have the lowest diversity of any of the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. In 2001, the most recent year for which data are available, ethnic and racial groups that are underrepresented in STEM disciplines made up approximately 25 percent of the population of the United States. In contrast, only 7 percent of the bachelor's, 5 percent of the master's, and 2 percent of the doctoral degrees awarded in the geosciences in 2001 went to members of underrepresented groups. The fact that diversity decreases less rapidly with increasing degree level (e.g. from B.S. to M.S.) in the geosciences than in other STEM disciplines indicates that the geosciences are of interest to members of underrepresented groups. Mechanisms that have been shown to be effective at increasing diversity in the geosciences (as well as total enrollment in bachelor's-level geoscience programs) are to: 1) demonstrate that the geosciences are relevant to technologically savvy, increasingly urban students; 2) engage students in research; 3) build partnerships between universities, community colleges, K-12 teachers, and guidance counselors, families, and communities to address pipeline issues; 4) promote mentoring relationships among scientists, educators, and students; 5) provide financial support to facilitate participation in the geosciences among all members of the diverse U.S. population; and 6) publicize traditional

  18. Carleton College: Geoscience Education for the Liberal Arts and the Geoscience Profession (United States)

    Savina, M. E.


    Carleton College is a small (current enrollment ~1950), four-year, residential liberal arts college that has graduated more than 900 geology majors since the inception of the geology department inception in 1933. Since 1974, an average of more than 20 geology students have graduated each year. The department curriculum aims to educate at least six overlapping groups of students, who, however, may not place themselves into one of these groups until well after graduating. These groups include students in non- science majors who take geology for breadth or because of interest; science majors; geology majors who end up in other professions; and geology majors who pursue careers related to geology, most of whom ultimately earn a higher, professional degree. Goals for these groups of students differ and the department focuses its curriculum on developing skills and providing student experiences that will serve all groups well. The department has a strong focus on field geology and communication skills, solving complex problems in many project-based courses (culminating in a senior independent project for each student), and much group work. These characteristics correlate well with Carleton institutional goals. The senior independent projects (all reported in written, visual and oral forms) form the basis for outcomes assessment. We also regularly survey alumni who are in graduate programs of all kinds (not just geoscience), asking them about how well their undergraduate education has prepared them. Finally, the staff meet at least annually to discuss the curriculum, its goals, values, skills and content, and do a formal self-study with external and internal reviewers at least once a decade. The success of Carleton geology alumni in government, research, industry, education, consulting and other professions is the ultimate assessment tool.

  19. A New Basis of Geoscience: Whole-Earth Decompression Dynamics

    CERN Document Server

    Herndon, J Marvin


    Neither plate tectonics nor Earth expansion theory is sufficient to provide a basis for understanding geoscience. Each theory is incomplete and possesses problematic elements, but both have served as stepping stones to a more fundamental and inclusive geoscience theory that I call Whole-Earth Decompression Dynamics (WEDD). WEDD begins with and is the consequence of our planet's early formation as a Jupiter-like gas giant and permits deduction of:(1) Earth's internal composition, structure, and highly-reduced oxidation state; (2) Core formation without whole-planet melting; (3) Powerful new internal energy sources - proto-planetary energy of compression and georeactor nuclear fission energy; (4) Georeactor geomagnetic field generation; (5) Mechanism for heat emplacement at the base of the crust resulting in the crustal geothermal gradient; (6) Decompression driven geodynamics that accounts for the myriad of observations attributed to plate tectonics without requiring physically-impossible mantle convection, an...

  20. Making the Transition from Geoscience Geek to Policy Wonk (United States)

    Rowan, L.


    Geoscientists are often drawn into policymaking, willingly or otherwise, because mapping a course of action for a specific outcome benefits from geoscientific expertise. Policy development, such as legislation or regulation regarding energy, water, minerals, soils, hazards, land use, and other Earth-based processes, is informed by the geosciences. Some geoscientists have moved fully into policymaking as full time policymakers for congressional offices, government agencies, think tanks, non-profits, foundations, industry, and other places. Geoscientists turned policymakers need good communication skills, patience, persistence, strategic forethought, agility, timing, an understanding of competing interests, and the courage to advance geoscientifically sound policy with the right people at the right time. Transitioning from the geeky world of geoscience to the wonky world of policy for a brief time or full time is possible, can be fulfilling as well as frustrating, and ultimately can have a profound impact on how society adapts to living with a dynamic Earth.

  1. International Geoscience Workforce Trends: More Challenges for Federal Agencies (United States)

    Groat, C. G.


    Concern about the decreasing number of students entering undergraduate geoscience programs has been chronic and, at times, acute over the past three decades. Despite dwindling populations of undergraduate majors, graduate programs have remained relatively robust, bolstered by international students. With Increasing competition for graduate students by universities in Europe, Japan, Australia, and some developing countries, and with procedural challenges faced by international students seeking entry into the United States and its universities, this supply source is threatened. For corporations operating on a global scale, the opportunity to employ students from and trained in the regions in which they operate is generally a plus. For U.S. universities that have traditionally supplied this workforce, the changing situation poses challenges, but also opportunities for creative international partnerships. Federal government science agencies face more challenges than opportunities in meeting workforce needs under both present and changing education conditions. Restrictions on hiring non-U.S. citizens into the permanent workforce have been a long-standing issue for federal agencies. Exceptions are granted only where they can document the absence of eligible U.S.-citizen candidates. The U.S. Geological Survey has been successful in doing this in its Mendenhall Postdoctoral Research Fellowship Program, but there has been no solution to the broader limitation. Under current and forecast workforce recruitment conditions, creativity, such as that evidenced by the Mendenhall program,will be necessary if federal agencies are to draw from the increasingly international geoscience talent pool. With fewer U.S. citizens in U.S. geoscience graduate programs and a growing number of advanced-degreed scientists coming from universities outside the U.S., the need for changes in federal hiring policies is heightened. The near-term liklihood of this is low and combined with the decline in

  2. OneGeology- A Global Geoscience Data Platform (United States)

    Harrison, M.; Komac, M.; Duffy, T.; Robida, F.; Allison, M. L.


    OneGeology (1G) is an initiative of Geological Survey Organisations (GSOs) around the globe that dates back to 2007. Since then, OneGeology has been a leader in developing geological online map data using GeoSciML- an international interoperability standard for the exchange of geological data. Increased use of this new standard allows geological data to be shared and integrated across the planet among organisations. One of the goals of OneGeology is an exchange of know-how with the developing world, shortening the digital learning curve. In autumn 2013 OneGeology was transformed into a Consortium with a clearly defined governance structure, making it more transparent, its operation more sustainable and its membership more open where in addition to GSOs, other types of organisations that create and use geoscience data can join and contribute. The next stage of the OneGeology initiative is focused on increasing the openness and richness of that data from individual countries to create a multi-thematic global geological data resource about the rocks beneath our feet. Authoritative geoscience information will help to mitigate natural disasters, explore for resources (water, minerals and energy) and identify risks to human health on a planetary scale with the aim of 1G to increase awareness of the geosciences and their relevance among professionals and general public- to be part of the solution. We live in a digital world that enables prompt access to vast amounts of open access data. Understanding our world, the geology beneath our feet and environmental challenges related to geology calls for accessibility of geoscience data and the OneGeology Portal ( is the place to find them.

  3. Semantics, ontologies and eScience for the geosciences


    Reitsma, Femke; Laxton, John; Ballard, Stuart; Kuhn, Werner; Abdelmoty, Alia


    Semantics, ontologies and eScience are key areas of research that aim to deal with the growing volume, number of sources and heterogeneity of geoscience data, information and knowledge. Following a workshop held at the eScience Institute in Edinburgh on the 7–9th of March 2008, this paper discusses some of the significant research topics and challenges for enhancing geospatial computing using semantic and grid technologies.

  4. Semantics, ontologies and eScience for the geosciences (United States)

    Reitsma, Femke; Laxton, John; Ballard, Stuart; Kuhn, Werner; Abdelmoty, Alia


    Semantics, ontologies and eScience are key areas of research that aim to deal with the growing volume, number of sources and heterogeneity of geoscience data, information and knowledge. Following a workshop held at the eScience Institute in Edinburgh on the 7-9th of March 2008, this paper discusses some of the significant research topics and challenges for enhancing geospatial computing using semantic and grid technologies.

  5. Preparing for a Professional Career in the Geosciences with AEG (United States)

    Barry, T.; Troost, K. G.


    The Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists offers multiple resources to students and faculty about careers in the geosciences, such as description of what employers are looking for, career options, mentoring, and building your professional network. Our website provides easy access to these and other resources. Most of AEG's 3000 members found their first job through association with another AEG member and more than 75% of our membership is working in applied geoscience jobs. We know that employers are looking for the following qualities: passion for your career and the geosciences, an enthusiastic personality, flexibility, responsibility, ability to communicate well in oral and written modes, and the ability to work well in teams or independently. Employers want candidates with a strong well-rounded geoscience education and the following skills/experience: attendance at field camp, working knowledge of field methodologies, strong oral and written communication skills, basic to advanced computer skills, and the ability to conduct research. In addition, skill with GIS applications, computer modeling, and 40-hour OSHA training are desired. The most successful technique for finding a job is to have and use a network. Students can start building their network by attending regular AEG or other professional society monthly meetings, volunteering with the society, attending annual meetings, going on fieldtrips and participating in other events. Students should research what kind of job they want and build a list of potential preferred employers, then market themselves to people within those companies using networking opportunities. Word-of-mouth sharing of job openings is the most powerful tool for getting hired, and if students have name recognition established within their group of preferred employers, job interviews will occur at a faster rate than otherwise.

  6. Geosciences program annual report 1978. [LBL Earth Sciences Division

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Witherspoon, P.A.


    This report is a reprint of the Geosciences section of the LBL Earth Sciences Division Annual Report 1978 (LBL-8648). It contains summary papers that describe fundamental studies addressing a variety of earth science problems of interest to the DOE. They have applications in such diverse areas as geothermal energy, oil recovery, in situ coal gasification, uranium resource evaluation and recovery, and earthquake prediction. Completed work has been reported or likely will be in the usual channels. (RWR)

  7. Tube Maps for Effective Geoscience Career Planning and Development (United States)

    Keane, C. M.; Wilson, C. E.; Houlton, H. R.


    One of the greatest challenges faced by students and new graduates is the advice that they must take charge of their own career planning. This is ironic as new graduates are least prepared to understand the full spectrum of options and the potential pathways to meeting their personal goals. We will examine the rationale, tools, and utility of an approach aimed at assisting individuals in career planning nicknamed a "tube map." In particular, this approach has been used in support of geoscientist recruitment and career planning in major European energy companies. By utilizing information on the occupational sequences of geoscience professionals within an organization or a community, a student or new hire can quickly understand the proven pathways towards their eventual career goals. The tube map visualizes the career pathways of individuals in the form of a subway map, with specific occupations represented as "stations" and pathway interconnections represented as "transfers." The major application of this approach in the energy sector was to demonstrate both the logical career pathways to either senior management or senior technical positions, as well as present the reality that time must be invested in "lower level" jobs, thereby nullifying a persistent overinflated sense of the speed of upward mobility. To this end, we have run a similar occupational analysis on several geoscience employers, including one with somewhat non-traditional geoscience positions and another that would be considered a very traditional employer. We will examine the similarities and differences between the resulting 'tube maps,' critique the tools used to create the maps, and assess the utility of the product in career development planning for geoscience students and new hires.

  8. GEM... The new IUGS Commission on Geoscience for Environmental Management

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    At the International Geological Congress held in Florence, Italy in August 2004 the IUGS Council approved the formation of a new Commission on Geoscience for Environmental Management. This new Commission was formed to continue IUGS activities in the environment following the closure of the IUGS Commission on Geological Sciences for Environmental Planning(COGEOENVIRONMENT) which had completed its term (refer to separate article in this issue).

  9. Applications of spaceborne laser ranger on EOS (United States)

    Degnan, John J.; Cohen, Steven C.


    An account is given of the design concept and potential applications in science and engineering of the spaceborne laser ranging and altimeter apparatus employed by the Geodynamics Laser Ranging System; this is scheduled for 1997 launch as part of the multiple-satellite Earth Observing System. In the retrograding mode for geodynamics, the system will use a Nd:YAG laser's green and UV output for distance determination to ground retroreflectors. Engineering applications encompass land management and long-term ground stability studies relevant to nuclear power plant, pipeline, and aqueduct locations.

  10. Validation of Chinese HY-2 satellite radar altimeter significant wave height

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YE Xiaomin; LIN Mingsen; XU Ying


    Chinese Haiyang-2(HY-2) satellite is the first Chinese marine dynamic environment satellite. The dual-frequency (Ku and C band) radar altimeter onboard HY-2 has been working effective to provide operational significant wave height (SWH) for more than three years (October 1, 2011 to present).We validated along-track Ku-band SWH data of HY-2 satellite against National Data Buoy Center (NDBC)in-situ measurements over a time period of three years from October 1, 2011 to September 30, 2014, the root mean square error (RMSE) and mean bias of HY-2 SWH is 0.38 m and (–0.13±0.35) m, respectively. We also did cross validation against Jason-2 altimeter SWH data,the RMSE and the mean bias is 0.36m and (–0.22±0.28) m, respectively. In order to compare the statistical results between HY-2 and Jason-2 satellite SWH data, we validated the Jason-2 satellite radar altimeter along-track Ku-band SWH data against NDBC measurements using the same method. The results demonstrate the validation method in this study is scientific and the RMSE and mean bias of Jason-2 SWH data is 0.26 m and (0.00±0.26) m, respectively. We also validated both HY-2 and Jason-2 SWH data every month, the mean bias of Jason-2 SWH data almost equaled to zero all the time, while the mean bias of HY-2 SWH data was no less than –0.31m before April 2013 and dropped to zero after that time. These results indicate that the statistical results for HY-2 altimeter SWH are reliable and HY-2 altimeter along-track SWH data were steady and of high quality in the last three years. The results also indicate that HY-2 SWH data have greatly been improved and have the same accuracy with Jason-2 SWH data after April, 2013. SWH data provided by HY-2 satellite radar altimeter are useful and acceptable for ocean operational applications.

  11. Reaching Beyond the Geoscience Stigma: Strategies for Success (United States)

    Messina, P.; Metzger, E. P.


    The geosciences have traditionally been viewed with less "academic prestige" than other science curricula. Among the effects of this perception are depressed K-16 enrollments; state standards' relegation of Earth and space science concepts to earlier grades; Earth Science assignments to lower-performing students, and sometimes even to under-qualified teachers: all of which simply confirm the misconceptions. Restructuring pre-college science curricula so that Earth Science is placed as a capstone course is one way to enhance student understanding of the geosciences. Research demonstrates that reversing the traditional science course sequence (by offering Physics in the ninth grade) improves student success in subsequent science courses. The "Physics First" movement continues to gain momentum offering a possible niche for the Earth and space sciences beyond middle school. It is also critical to bridge the information gap for those with little or no prior exposure to the Earth sciences, particularly K-12 educators. An Earth systems course developed at San José State University is aligned to our state's standards; it is approved to satisfy geoscience subject matter competency by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing, making it a popular offering for pre- and in-service teachers. Expanding our audience beyond the Bay Area, the Earth Systems Science Education Alliance courses infuse real-world and hands-on learning in a cohesive online curriculum. Through these courses teachers gain knowledge, share effective pedagogies, and build geography-independent communities.

  12. Validation, Analysis of the Chinese HY-2 Satellite Altimeter Data and their Applications in the China Sea and its Vicinity (United States)

    Yang, Jungang; Zhang, Jie; Cui, Wei; Zhao, Xinhua; Han, Weixiao; Martinez, Bernat


    Chinese first altimetry satellite HY-2 has been on obit almost 5 years by now and a large amount of marine observing data of HY-2 altimeter have acquired. In this paper, sea surface height (SSH) data of HY-2 altimeter are validated by the SSH difference at the self- crossover of the HY-2 ascending and descending obit, and at the mutual-crossover of HY-2 and Jason-2 obit. Significant wave height (SWH) data of HY-2 altimeter are validated by the data of NDBC buoys. On the data application of HY-2 altimeter, mesoscale eddies in the South China Sea and the western Pacific Ocean, the characteristics of ocean wave in the China Sea and the characteristics of Kuroshio are analyzed by combing with Envsiat RA-2, Jason-1/2 data.

  13. Offshore limit of coastal ocean variability identified from hydrography and altimeter data in the eastern Arabian Sea

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Antony, M.K.; Swamy, G.N.; Somayajulu, Y.K.

    In this communication, we describe a hitherto-unknown offshore limit to the coastal ocean variability signatures away from the continental shelf in the eastern Arabian Sea, based on hydrographic observations and satellite altimeter (TOPEX...

  14. NODC Standard Product: US Navy Geosat altimeter geophysical data records (GDRs) for the Geodetic Mission (NODC Accession 0053782) (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This accession contains a complete copy of an NODC four CD-ROM product set containing all of NOAA's geophysical data records (GDRs) for the Geosat altimeter data...

  15. Surface circulation off Somalia and western equatorial Indian Ocean during summer monsoon of 1988 from Geosat altimeter data

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Subrahmanyam, B.; RameshBabu, V.; Murty, V.S.N.; Rao, L.V.G.

    The sea level variability derived from repeating tracks of the Geosat altimeter data during the late phase (August-September) of the summer monsoon of 1988 revealed the presence of multiple meso-scale eddy features with clockwise and anti...

  16. National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT) support for the Next Generation Science Standards (United States)

    Buhr Sullivan, S. M.; Awad, A. A.; Manduca, C. A.


    The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) represents the best opportunity for geosciences education since 1996, describing a vision of teaching excellence and placing Earth and space science on a par with other disciplines. However, significant, sustained support and relationship-building between disciplinary communities must be forthcoming in order to realize the potential. To realize the vision, teacher education, curricula, assessments, administrative support and workforce/college readiness expectations must be developed. The National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT), a geoscience education professional society founded in 1938, is comprised of members across all educational contexts, including undergraduate faculty, pre-college teachers, informal educators, geoscience education researchers and teacher educators. NAGT support for NGSS includes an upcoming workshop in collaboration with the American Geosciences Institute, deep collections of relevant digital learning resources, pertinent interest groups within the membership, professional development workshops, and more. This presentation will describe implications of NGSS for the geoscience education community and highlight some opportunities for the path forward.

  17. A study of possible sea state information in the sample and hold gate statistics for the GEOS-3 satellite altimeter (United States)

    Wells, W. T.; Borman, K. L.; Mitchell, R. D.; Dempsey, D. J.


    The statistical variations in the sample gate outputs of the GEOS-3 satellite altimeter were studied for possible sea state information. After examination of a large number of statistical characteristics of the altimeter waveforms, it was found that the best sea predictor for H-1/3 in the range of 0 to 3 meters was the 75th percentile of sample and hold gate number 11.

  18. Meeting the Challenges for Gender Diversity in the Geosciences (United States)

    Bell, R. E.; Cane, M. A.; Kastens, K. A.; Miller, R. B.; Mutter, J. C.; Pfirman, S. L.


    Women are now routinely chief scientists on major cruises, lead field parties to all continents, and have risen to leadership positions in professional organizations, academic departments and government agencies including major funding agencies. They teach at all levels, advise research students, make research discoveries and receive honors in recognition of their achievements. Despite these advances, women continue to be under-represented in the earth, ocean, and atmospheric sciences. As of 1997 women received only 29% of the doctorates in the earth, atmospheric, and oceanographic sciences and accounted for only 13% of employed Ph.D.s in these fields. Women's salaries also lag: the median annual salary for all Ph.D. geoscientists was \\60,000; for women the figure is \\47,000. Solving the problem of gender imbalance in the geosciences requires understanding of the particular obstacles women face in our field. The problem of under-representation of women requires that earth science departments, universities and research centers, funding agencies, and professional organizations like AGU take constructive action to recognize the root causes of the evident imbalance, and enact corrective policies. We have identified opportunities and challenges for each of these groups. A systematic study of the flux of women at Columbia University enabled a targeted strategy towards improving gender diversity based on the observed trends. The challenge for academic institutions is to document the flux of scientists and develop an appropriate strategy to balance the geoscience demographics. Based on the MIT study, an additional challenge faces universities and research centers. To enhance gender diversity these institutions need to develop transparency in promotion processes and open distribution of institutional resources. The challenge for granting agencies is to implement policies that ease the burden of extensive fieldwork on parents. Many fields of science require long work hours

  19. Web-based Academic Roadmaps for Careers in the Geosciences (United States)

    Murray, D. P.; Veeger, A. I.; Grossman-Garber, D.


    To a greater extent than most science programs, geology is underrepresented in K-12 curricula and the media. Thus potential majors have scant knowledge of academic requirements and career trajectories, and their idea of what geologists do--if they have one at all--is outdated. We have addressed these concerns by developing a dynamic, web-based academic roadmap for current and prospective students, their families, and others who are contemplating careers in the geosciences. The goals of this visually attractive "educational pathway" are to not only improve student recruitment and retention, but to empower student learning by creating better communication and advising tools that can render our undergraduate program transparent for learners and their families. Although we have developed academic roadmaps for four environmental and life science programs at the University of Rhode Island, we focus here on the roadmap for the geosciences, which illustrates educational pathways along the academic and early-career continuum for current and potential (i.e., high school) students who are considering the earth sciences. In essence, the Geosciences Academic Roadmap is a "one-stop'" portal to the discipline. It includes user- friendly information about our curriculum, outcomes (which at URI are tightly linked to performance in courses and the major), extracurricular activities (e.g., field camp, internships), careers, graduate programs, and training. In the presentation of this material extensive use is made of streaming video, interviews with students and earth scientists, and links to other relevant sites. Moreover, through the use of "Hot Topics", particular attention is made to insure that examples of geoscience activities are not only of relevance to today's students, but show geologists using the modern methods of the discipline in exciting ways. Although this is a "work-in-progress", evaluation of the sites, by high school through graduate students, has been strongly

  20. "YouTube Geology" - Increasing Geoscience Visibility Through Short Films (United States)

    Piispa, E. J.; Lerner, G. A.


    Researchers have the responsibility to communicate their science to a broad audience: scientists, non-scientist, young and old. Effective ways of reaching these groups include using pathways that genuinely spark interest in the target audience. Communication techniques should evolve as the means of communication evolve. Here we talk about our experiences using short films to increase geoscience visibility and appreciation. At a time when brevity and quick engagement are vital to capturing people's attention, creating videos that fit popular formats is an effective way to draw and hold people's interest, and spreading these videos on popular sites is a good way to reach a non-academic audience. Creating videos that are fun, exciting, and catchy in order to initially increase awareness and interest is equally important as the educational content. The visual medium can also be powerful way to make complex scientific concepts seem less intimidating. We have experimented with this medium of geoscience communication by creating a number of short films that target a variety of audiences: short summaries of research topics, mock movie trailers, course advertisements, fieldwork highlight reels and geology lessons for elementary school children. Our two rules of thumb are to put the audience first and use style as a vital element. This allows for the creation of films that are more engaging and often less serious than standard informational (and longer-format) videos. Science does not need to be dry and dull - it can be humorous and entertaining while remaining highly accurate. Doing these short films has changed our own mindset as well - thinking about what to film while doing research helps keep the practical applications of our research in focus. We see a great deal of potential for collaboration between geoscientists and amateur or professional filmmakers creating hip and edgy videos that further raise awareness and interest. People like movies. We like movies. We like


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Making use of altimeter wind data and standard sounding data in a mesoscale numerical model of PSU/NCAR (MM5), we test four-dimensional data assimilation scheme based on nudging. The purpose of this paper is to determine what meteorological fields and what assimilation method have positive effect on typhoon sea surface wind by simulating two typhoon cases in MM5. We perform seven experiments for 9608 Typhoon (Case 1): one control experiment, three analysis nudging experiments, two observation nudging experiments and one analysis and observation nudging experiment; we perform one control experiment and one analysis nudging experiment for 9711 Typhoon (Case 2). The results show assimilating wind-thermal fields can effectively improve simulation accuracy of the model; the experiment combining standard sounding data and surface observations can improve greatly the simulation accuracy of the model; the altimeter data contain lots of sea surface information and also have positive impact on typhoon sea surface wind.

  2. Teaching All Geoscience Students: Lessons Learned From Two-Year Colleges (United States)

    Baer, Eric; Blodgett, Robert H.; Macdonald, R. Heather


    Geoscience faculty at 2-year colleges (2YCs) are at the forefront of efforts to improve student learning and success while at the same time broadening participation in the geosciences. Faculty of 2YCs instruct large numbers of students from underrepresented minority groups and many students who are the first in their families to pursue higher education. Geoscience classes at 2YCs also typically have large enrollments of nontraditional students, English language learners, and students with learning disabilities.

  3. Geoscience Information for Teachers (GIFT) Workshops of the European Geoscience Union General Assembly (United States)

    Arnold, Eve; Barnikel, Friedrich; Berenguer, Jean-Luc; Cifelli, Francesca; Funiciello, Francesca; King, Chris; Laj, Carlo; Macko, Stephen; Schwarz, Annegret; Smith, Phil; Summesberger, Herbert


    GIFT workshops are a two-and-a-half-day teacher enhancement workshops organized by the EGU Committee on Education and held in conjunction with the EGU annual General Assembly in Vienna, and also elsewhere in the world usually associated with large geoscience conferences. The program of each workshop focuses on a different general theme each year. Past themes have included, for example, "The solar system and beyond", "Mineral Resources", "Our changing Planet", "Natural Hazards", "Water" and "Evolution and Biodiversity". These workshops combine scientific presentations on current research in the Earth and Space Sciences, given by prominent scientists, with hands-on, inquiry-based activities that can be used by the teachers in their classrooms to explain related scientific principles or topics. Participating teachers are also invited to present their own classroom activities to their colleagues, even when not directly related to the current program. The main objective of these workshops is to communicate first-hand scientific information to teachers in primary and secondary schools, significantly shortening the time between discovery and textbook. The GIFT workshop provides the teachers with materials that can be directly incorporated into their classroom, as well as those of their colleagues at home institutions. In addition, the full immersion of science teachers in a truly scientific context (EGU General Assemblies) and the direct contact with leading geoscientists stimulates curiosity towards research that the teachers can transmit to their pupils. In addition to their scientific content, the GIFT workshops are of high societal value. The value of bringing teachers from many nations together includes the potential for networking and collaborations, the sharing of experiences and an awareness of science education as it is presented in other countries. Since 2003, the EGU GIFT workshops have brought together more than 800 teachers from more than 25 nations. At all

  4. Effective aerodynamic roughness estimated from airborne laser altimeter measurements of surface features

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Vries, AC; Kustas, WP; Ritchie, JC; Klaassen, W; Menenti, M; Rango, A; Prueger, JH


    Aerodynamic roughness length (z(0)) and displacement height (d(0)) are important surface parameters for estimating surface fluxes in numerical models. These parameters are generally determined from wind flow characteristics using logarithmic wind profiles measured at a meteorological tower or by

  5. Quantifying Seasonal Skill In Coupled Sea Ice Models Using Freeboard Measurements From Spaceborne Laser Altimeters (United States)


    10  Figure 9.  Linear Trend (%/year) of solar heat flux into the Arctic Ocean. Source: Perovich (2007). The color scale...Anisotropic ice flow in the Beaufort Sea, April 29, 2011. Source: Global Fiducials Library (2015) Angles between leads that are formed across ice floes... Panels a-d correspond to Figure 44 c-f. Bias( fbmodel ) that is statistically significant at the 95% confidence interval is represented in red

  6. Effective aerodynamic roughness estimated from airborne laser altimeter measurements of surface features

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Vries, AC; Kustas, WP; Ritchie, JC; Klaassen, W; Menenti, M; Rango, A; Prueger, JH


    Aerodynamic roughness length (z(0)) and displacement height (d(0)) are important surface parameters for estimating surface fluxes in numerical models. These parameters are generally determined from wind flow characteristics using logarithmic wind profiles measured at a meteorological tower or by bal

  7. MARA (Multimode Airborne Radar Altimeter) system documentation. Volume 1: MARA system requirements document (United States)

    Parsons, C. L. (Editor)


    The Multimode Airborne Radar Altimeter (MARA), a flexible airborne radar remote sensing facility developed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, is discussed. This volume describes the scientific justification for the development of the instrument and the translation of these scientific requirements into instrument design goals. Values for key instrument parameters are derived to accommodate these goals, and simulations and analytical models are used to estimate the developed system's performance.

  8. Detailed gravimetric geoid for the GEOS-C altimeter calibration area (United States)

    Marsh, J. G.; Vincent, S.


    The GEOS-C spacecraft scheduled for launch in late 1974 will carry a radar altimeter for the purpose of measuring sea surface topography. In order to calibrate and evaluate the performance of the altimeter system, ground truth data are required. In this respect a detailed gravimetric geoid has been computed for the GEOS-C altimeter calibration area in the Atlantic Ocean off the East Coast of the U.S. This geoid is based upon a combination of mean free air surface gravity anomalies and the Goddard Space Flight Center GEM-6 satellite-derived spherical harmonic coefficients. Surface gravity anomalies have been used to provide information on the short wave length undulations of the geoid while the satellite-derived coefficients have provided information on the long wave length components. As part of these analyses, GSFC, SAO and OSU satellite-derived gravity models were used in the computations. Although geoid heights based upon the various satellite models differed by as much as 30 meters in the Southern Hemisphere, the differences in this Atlantic Ocean area were less than 4 meters.

  9. Study of high-altitude radar altimeter model accuracy and SITAN performance using HAAFT data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shieves, T.C.; Callahan, M.W.


    Radar altimetry data, inertial navigation data, and scoring data were collected under the HAAFT program by Martin Marietta Corporation for the United States Air Force over several areas in the western United States at altitudes ranging from 3 to 20 km. The study reported here uses the HAAFT data in conjunction with Defense Mapping Agency (DMA) topographic data to evaluate the accuracy of a high-altitude pulsed-radar altimeter model and the resulting performance of the terrain-aided guidance concept SITAN. Previous SITAN flight tests at low altitudes (less than 1500 m AGL) have demonstrated 6-20 m CEP. The high-altitude flight test data analyzed herein show a SITAN CEP of 120 m. The radar altimeter model was required to achieve this performance includes the effects of the internal track loop, AGC loop, antenna beamwidth, and the terrain radar cross section and provided a factor of 6 improvement over simple nadir ground clearance for rough terrain. It is postulated that high-altitude CEP could be reduced to 50 m or less if an altimeter were designed specifically for high-altitude terrain sensing.

  10. ALTWAVE: Toolbox for use of satellite L2P altimeter data for wave model validation (United States)

    Appendini, Christian M.; Camacho-Magaña, Víctor; Breña-Naranjo, José Agustín


    To characterize some of the world's ocean physical processes such as its wave height, wind speed and sea surface elevation is a major need for coastal and marine infrastructure planning and design, tourism activities, wave power and storm surge risk assessment, among others. Over the last decades, satellite remote sensing tools have provided quasi-global measurements of ocean altimetry by merging data from different satellite missions. While there is a widely use of altimeter data for model validation, practical tools for model validation remain scarce. Our purpose is to fill this gap by introducing ALTWAVE, a MATLAB user-oriented toolbox for oceanographers and coastal engineers developed to validate wave model results based on visual features and statistical estimates against satellite derived altimetry. Our toolbox uses altimetry information from the GlobWave initiative, and provides a sample application to validate a one year wave hindcast for the Gulf of Mexico. ALTWAVE also offers an effective toolbox to validate wave model results using altimeter data, as well as a guidance for non-experienced satellite data users. This article is intended for wave modelers with no experience using altimeter data to validate their results.

  11. The validation of HY-2 altimeter measurements of a significant wave height based on buoy data

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Jichao; ZHANG Jie; YANG Jungang


    HY-2 has been launched by China on August 16, 2011 which assembles multi-microwave remote sensing payloads in a body and has the ability of monitoring ocean dynamic environments. The HY-2 satellite data need to be calibrated and validated before being put into use. Based on the in-situ buoys from the Nation-al Data Buoy Center (NDBC), Ku-band significant wave heights (SWH, hs) of HY-2 altimeter are validated. Eleven months of HY-2 altimeter Level 2 products data are chose from October 1, 2011 to August 29, 2012. Using NDBC 60 buoys yield 902 collocations for HY-2 by adopting collocation criteria of 30 min for tempo-ral window and 50 km for a spatial window. An overall RMS difference of the SWH between HY-2 and buoy data is 0.297 m. A correlation coefficient between these is 0.964. An ordinary least squares (OLS) regression is performed with the buoy data as an independent variable and the altimeter data as a dependent vari-able. The regression equation of hs is hs(HY-2)=0.891×hs(NDBC)+0.022. In addition, 2016 collocations are matched with temporal window of 30 min at the crossing points of HY-2 and Jason-2 orbits. RMS difference of Ku-band SWH between the two data sets is 0.452 m.

  12. What Limits an Altimeter's Resolution of Along-Track Geoid Slope? Insights from Saral and Cryosat (United States)

    Smith, W. H. F.


    Satellite altimeter data collected along densely spaced ground tracks can map the marine gravity field, revealing the tectonic fabric of the sea floor. This application requires high accuracy of the along-track derivative of sea surface height over distances shorter than 80 km, and so is very sensitive to the instrument's range precision and any factors that produce short-scale along-track correlation of range measurement errors. To date the altimeters that have collected data over a dense network of ground tracks all acquired their largest data sets in Ku band and employing conventional (incoherent) processing. Two new altimeters go beyond conventional Ku instruments. SARAL AltiKa operates as an incoherent altimeter at Ka-band, and CryoSat collects some Ku-band data in a SAR mode to permit coherent processing for aperture synthesis and delay-Doppler calculations. The along-track range noise correlation characteristics of each of these new measurements are different from what has been seen in previous altimeters. SARAL AltiKa has a lower noise floor than pre-Cryosat Ku-band instruments and its noise spectrum shows decorrelation at different wavelengths, in partial agreement with theoretical work on speckle noise decorrelation over homogeneous surfaces. This improved noise performance results in demonstrable improvement in the resolution of geoid anomalies over small seamounts. Retracking of Cryosat's SAR mode multi-looked waveform yields a decorrelation of range errors unlike that found in conventional instruments, such that it doesn't require two-pass retracking to get the best geoid slope resolution. This is due mainly to the waveform's shape, which yields partial derivatives with respect to geophysical parameter estimates that are more nearly orthogonal than in conventional Ku-band Brown model waveforms. Further understanding of the limits on range precision in these instruments will require understanding of the heterogeneities in reflecting surfaces that are

  13. Nearshore Bathymetric Change Resolved by Depth Inversions, Sonic Altimeters, and In-Situ Surveys (United States)

    Brodie, K. L.; Palmsten, M. L.; Hesser, T.; Dickhudt, P.; Ladner, H.; Elgar, S.; Raubenheimer, B.; Penko, A.


    Video-based remote sensing of shoaling and breaking surface gravity waves combined with a depth-inversion algorithm, cBathy, may be able to provide bathymetry information with high spatial and temporal resolution in the nearshore (Holman et al., 2013, JGR, Vol 118). Although the accuracy of cBathy has been assessed in low-wave conditions when coincident in-situ surveys are available, it has not been tested for many conditions with significant wave height > 1.5 m. During high wave conditions, the use of linear wave theory in the depth-inversion algorithm may result in estimates of water depth that are too deep. Here, measurements from an in-situ array of sonic altimeters and from frequent watercraft surveys are used to assess the ability of cBathy to estimate the spatio-temporal evolution of the seafloor during a range of wave conditions at a micro-tidal sandy beach in Duck, NC. Observations were collected continuously from 14 October to 01 November 2015 with 8 altimeters in 1.5 to 4 m water depth on 2 cross-shore transects separated by 75 m in the alongshore during waves that ranged from 0.5 to 1.0 m. Nearshore bathymetry was alongshore variable, with a crescentic bar that attached to the shoreline along one transect and was 150 m offshore along the other transect. Sand levels changed by as much as 1 m in some locations. Additional measurements were collected with 3 altimeters on a single cross-shore transect for 6 months, with wave heights from 0.3 to 5.0 m and sand level fluctuations of up to 1 m in a single day. Initial comparisons with surveys show cBathy RMSE and bias are of similar magnitude to prior studies. Although cBathy resolves the large-scale spatial morphology of the sandbar, when Hs > 1.3 m cBathy estimates of the sandbar location are 10 to 50 m onshore of the surveyed location. cBathy uncertainty estimates were a poor representation of actual errors when compared with the surveys. Six-month-long time series of altimeter data will be used to assess c

  14. Sea-Ice Freeboard Retrieval Using Digital Photon-Counting Laser Altimetry (United States)

    Farrell, Sinead L.; Brunt, Kelly M.; Ruth, Julia M.; Kuhn, John M.; Connor, Laurence N.; Walsh, Kaitlin M.


    Airborne and spaceborne altimeters provide measurements of sea-ice elevation, from which sea-ice freeboard and thickness may be derived. Observations of the Arctic ice pack by satellite altimeters indicate a significant decline in ice thickness, and volume, over the last decade. NASA's Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite-2 (ICESat-2) is a next-generation laser altimeter designed to continue key sea-ice observations through the end of this decade. An airborne simulator for ICESat-2, the Multiple Altimeter Beam Experimental Lidar (MABEL), has been deployed to gather pre-launch data for mission development. We present an analysis of MABEL data gathered over sea ice in the Greenland Sea and assess the capabilities of photon-counting techniques for sea-ice freeboard retrieval. We compare freeboard estimates in the marginal ice zone derived from MABEL photon-counting data with coincident data collected by a conventional airborne laser altimeter. We find that freeboard estimates agree to within 0.03m in the areas where sea-ice floes were interspersed with wide leads, and to within 0.07m elsewhere. MABEL data may also be used to infer sea-ice thickness, and when compared with coincident but independent ice thickness estimates, MABEL ice thicknesses agreed to within 0.65m or better.

  15. Recruitment Strategies for Geoscience Majors: Conceptual Framework and Practical Suggestions (United States)

    Richardson, R. M.; Eyles, C.; Ormand, C. J.


    One characteristic of strong geoscience departments is that they recruit and retain quality students. In a survey to over 900 geoscience departments in the US and Canada several years ago nearly 90% of respondents indicated that recruiting and retaining students was important. Two years ago we offered a pre-GSA workshop on recruiting and retaining students that attracted over 30 participants from over 20 different institutions, from liberal arts colleges to state universities to research intensive universities. Since then we have sought additional feedback from a presentation to the AGU Heads & Chairs at a Fall AGU meeting, and most recently from a workshop on strengthening geoscience programs in June 2009. In all of these settings, a number of themes and concrete strategies have emerged. Key themes included strategies internal to the department/institution; strategies that reach beyond the department/institution; determining how scalable/transferable strategies that work in one setting are to your own setting; identifying measures of success; and developing or improving on an existing action plan specific to your departmental/institutional setting. The full results of all of these efforts to distill best practices in recruiting students will be shared at the Fall AGU meeting, but some of the best practices for strategies local to the department/institution include: 1) focusing on introductory classes (having the faculty who are most successful in that setting teach them, having one faculty member make a common presentation to all classes about what one can do with a geoscience major, offering topical seminars, etc.); 2) informing students of career opportunities (inviting alumni back to talk to students, using AGI resources, etc.,); 3) creating common space for students to work, study, and be a community; 4) inviting all students earning an ‘A’ (or ‘B’) in introductory classes to a departmental event just for them; and 5) creating a field trip for incoming

  16. Integrated Design for Geoscience Education with Upward Bound Students (United States)

    Cartwright, T. J.; Hogsett, M.; Ensign, T. I.; Hemler, D.


    Capturing the interest of our students is imperative to expand the conduit of future Earth scientists in the United States. According to the Rising Above the Gathering Storm report (2005), we must increase America's talent pool by improving K-12 mathematics and science education. Geoscience education is uniquely suited to accomplish this goal, as we have become acutely aware of our sensitivity to the destructive forces of nature. The educational community must take advantage of this heightened awareness to educate our students and ensure the next generation rebuilds the scientific and technological base on which our society rests. In response to these concerns, the National Science Foundation advocates initiatives in Geoscience Education such as IDGE (Integrated Design for Geoscience Education), which is an inquiry-based geoscience program for Upward Bound (UB) students at Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia. The UB program targets low-income under-represented students for a summer academic-enrichment program. IDGE builds on the mission of UB by encouraging underprivileged students to investigate science and scientific careers. During the two year project, high school students participated in an Environmental Inquiry course utilizing GLOBE program materials and on-line learning modules developed by geoscience specialists in land cover, soils, hydrology, phenology, and meteorology. Students continued to an advanced course which required IDGE students to collaborate with GLOBE students from Costa Rica. The culmination of this project was an educational expedition in Costa Rica to complete ecological field studies, providing first-hand knowledge of the international responsibility we have as scientists and citizens of our planet. IDGE was designed to continuously serve educators and students. By coordinating initiatives with GLOBE headquarters and the GLOBE country community, IDGE's efforts have yielded multiple ways in which to optimize positive

  17. Field Studies—Essential Cognitive Foundations for Geoscience Expertise (United States)

    Goodwin, C.; Mogk, D. W.


    Learning in the field has traditionally been one of the fundamental components of the geoscience curriculum. Field experiences have been attributed to having positive impacts on cognitive, affective, metacognitive, mastery of skills and social components of learning geoscience. The development of geoscience thinking, and of geoscience expertise, encompasses a number of learned behaviors that contribute to the progress of Science and the development of scientists. By getting out into Nature, students necessarily engage active and experiential learning. The open, dynamic, heterogeneous and complex Earth system provides ample opportunities to learn by inquiry and discovery. Learning in this environment requires that students make informed decisions and to think critically about what is important to observe, and what should be excluded in the complex overload of information provided by Nature. Students must learn to employ the full range of cognitive skills that include observation, description, interpretation, analysis and synthesis that lead to “deep learning”. They must be able to integrate and rationalize observations of Nature with modern experimental, analytical, theoretical, and modeling approaches to studying the Earth system, and they must be able to iterate between what is known and what is yet to be discovered. Immersion in the field setting provides students with a sense of spatial and temporal scales of natural phenomena that can not be derived in other learning environments. The field setting provides strong sensory inputs that stimulate cognition and memories that will be available for future application. The field environment also stimulates strong affective responses related to motivation, curiosity, a sense of “ownership” of field projects, and inclusion in shared experiences that carry on throughout professional careers. The nature of field work also contains a strong metacognitive component, as students learn to be aware of what and how they

  18. Preparing students in two-year colleges for geoscience degrees and careers: Workshop results (United States)

    Macdonald, H.; Baer, E. M.; Blodgett, R. H.; Hodder, J.


    Building a strong and diverse geoscience workforce is a critical national challenge. Two-year colleges (2YCs) play an important role in increasing both the number and diversity of geoscience graduates. A workshop on Preparing Students from Two-year Colleges for Geoscience Degrees and Careers was held in Tacoma, WA in July 2012 to discuss the successes and challenges of programs, strategies, and activities that support career preparation of 2YC students for geoscience careers, either as geotechnical graduates or as geoscience majors at four-year colleges and universities, and to make recommendations for future efforts. At the workshop several successful partnerships between employers and two-year colleges as well as between two-year colleges and four-year institutions were discussed as potential models that could be replicated with adaptations for local employment needs. Participants shared successful techniques for supporting 2YC students in their career path such as internships, early opportunities for participating in research, joint fieldtrips with transfer institutions, and supportive curriculum alignment between two and four-year institutions. Professional organizations have much to offer including information about career options, networking opportunities, and more. Participants discussed strategies for supporting geoscience workforce development at 2YCs such as making connections between 2YCs and local employers, identifying geoscience students at 2YCs who are planning to transfer and building relationships with 4YCs, establishing internship programs, supporting student geoscience clubs, and developing a repository of geoscience employment information targeted to 2YC students. Participants recognized significant barriers to incorporating career training and information into the geoscience curriculum at two-year colleges. These barriers include a predominance of non-geoscience students in classes, lack of support or rewards for improving or increasing the

  19. Improving Undergraduate STEM Education: Pathways into Geoscience (IUSE: GEOPATHS) - A National Science Foundation Initiative (United States)

    Jones, B.; Patino, L. C.


    Preparation of the future professional geoscience workforce includes increasing numbers as well as providing adequate education, exposure and training for undergraduates once they enter geoscience pathways. It is important to consider potential career trajectories for geoscience students, as these inform the types of education and skill-learning required. Recent reports have highlighted that critical thinking and problem-solving skills, spatial and temporal abilities, strong quantitative skills, and the ability to work in teams are among the priorities for many geoscience work environments. The increasing focus of geoscience work on societal issues (e.g., climate change impacts) opens the door to engaging a diverse population of students. In light of this, one challenge is to find effective strategies for "opening the world of possibilities" in the geosciences for these students and supporting them at the critical junctures where they might choose an alternative pathway to geosciences or otherwise leave altogether. To address these and related matters, The National Science Foundation's (NSF) Directorate for Geosciences (GEO) has supported two rounds of the IUSE: GEOPATHS Program, to create and support innovative and inclusive projects to build the future geoscience workforce. This program is one component in NSF's Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) initiative, which is a comprehensive, Foundation-wide effort to accelerate the quality and effectiveness of the education of undergraduates in all of the STEM fields. The two tracks of IUSE: GEOPATHS (EXTRA and IMPACT) seek to broaden and strengthen connections and activities that will engage and retain undergraduate students in geoscience education and career pathways, and help prepare them for a variety of careers. The long-term goal of this program is to dramatically increase the number and diversity of students earning undergraduate degrees or enrolling in graduate programs in geoscience fields, as well as

  20. EarthCube - Results of Test Governance in Geoscience Cyberinfrastructure (United States)

    Davis, R.; Allison, M. L.; Keane, C. M.; Robinson, E.


    In September 2016, the EarthCube Test Enterprise Governance Project completed its three-year long process to engage the community and test a demonstration governing organization with the goal of facilitating a community-led process on designing and developing a geoscience cyberinfrastructure to transform geoscience research. The EarthCube initiative is making an important transition from creating a coherent community towards adoption and implemention of technologies that can serve scientists working in and across many domains. The emerging concept of a "system of systems" approach to cyberinfrastructure architecture is a critical concept in the EarthCube program, but has not been fully defined. Recommendations from an NSF-appointed Advisory Committee include: a. developing a succinct definition of EarthCube; b. changing the community-elected governance approach towards structured rather than consensus-driven decision-making; c. restructuring the process to articulate program solicitations; and d. producing an effective implementation roadmap. These are seen as prerequisites to adoption of best practices, system concepts, and evolving to a production track. The EarthCube governing body is preparing responses to the Advisory Committee findings and recommendations with a target delivery date of late 2016 but broader involvement may be warranted. We conclude that there is ample justification to continue evolving to a governance framework that facilitates convergence on a system architecture that guides EarthCube activities and plays an influential role in making operational the EarthCube vision of cyberinfrastructure for the geosciences. There is widespread community expectation for support of a multiyear EarthCube governing effort to put into practice the science, technical, and organizational plans that are continuing to emerge. However, the active participants in EarthCube represent a small sub-set of the larger population of geoscientists.

  1. Building Strong Geoscience Programs: Perspectives From Three New Programs (United States)

    Flood, T. P.; Munk, L.; Anderson, S. W.


    During the past decade, at least sixteen geoscience departments in the U.S. that offer a B.S. degree or higher have been eliminated or dispersed. During that same time, three new geoscience departments with degree-granting programs have been developed. Each program has unique student demographics, affiliation (i.e. public institution versus private liberal arts college), geoscience curricula and reasons for initiation. Some of the common themes for each program include; 1) strong devotion to providing field experiences, 2) commitment to student-faculty collaborative research, 3) maintaining traditional geology program elements in the core curriculum and 4) placing students into high quality graduate programs and geoscience careers. Although the metrics for each school vary, each program can claim success in the area of maintaining solid enrollments. This metric is critical because programs are successful only if they have enough students, either in the major and/or general education courses, to convince administrators that continued support of faculty, including space and funding is warranted. Some perspectives gained through the establishment of these new programs may also be applicable to established programs. The success and personality of a program can be greatly affected by the personality of a single faculty member. Therefore, it may not be in the best interest of a program to distribute programmatic work equally among all faculty. For example, critical responsibilities such as teaching core and introductory courses should be the responsibility of faculty who are fully committed to these pursuits. However, if these responsibilities reduce scholarly output, well-articulated arguments should be developed in order to promote program quality and sustainability rather than individual productivity. Field and undergraduate research experiences should be valued as much as high-quality classroom and laboratory instruction. To gain the support of the administration

  2. Open file report: geoscience studies in Buena Vista Valley, Nevada

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Goldstein, N.E.; Beyer, H.; Corwin, R.; di Somma, D.E.; Majer, E.; McEvilly, T.V.; Morrison, H.F.; Wollenberg, H.A.; Grannell, R.


    As part of the study of applications of geoscience techniques to the assessment of potential geothermal resources areas, geological, geophysical, and geochemical surveys were conducted in Buena Vista Valley, north-central Nevada. Within the survey area there is no visible indication of present-day hydrothermal activity except at Kyle Hot Springs. The geophysical work, consisting of gravity, magnetics, self-potential, E-field-ratio tellurics, dipole-dipole resistivity, microearthquake and heat flow measurements, did not detect evidence for any other circulating hot-water system. Maps and geophysical data profile composites are presented. (MHR)

  3. Data processing assessment for the Lunar Geoscience Observer imaging spectrometer (United States)

    Irigoyen, R. E.; Liaw, H. M.


    On the Lunar Geoscience Observer project, a Visible and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer instrument has been proposed. This instrument will have science data input rates in the hundreds of kilobits per second (kbps) and an average telemetry output data rate of 4 kbps. Techniques that can be used to reduce the throughput of the instrument are editing, summing and averaging, data compression, data preprocessing, pattern recognition and snapshot data taking. Due to instrument limitations in the buffer memory size and processing speeds, a careful selection of the available techniques must be made.

  4. LaURGE: Louisiana Undergraduate Recruitment and Geoscience Education (United States)

    Nunn, J. A.; Agnew, J.


    NSF and the Shell Foundation sponsor a program called Louisiana Undergraduate Recruitment and Geoscience Education (LaURGE). Goals of LaURGE are: 1) Interweave geoscience education into the existing curriculum; 2) Provide teachers with lesson plans that promote interest in geoscience, critical thinking by students, and are consistent with current knowledge in geoscience; and 3) Provide teachers with supplies that make these lessons the highlights of the course. Biology workshops were held at LSU in Baton Rouge and Centenary College in Shreveport in July 2009. 25 teachers including 5 African-Americans attended the workshops. Teachers were from public and private schools in seven different parishes. Teacher experience ranged from 3 years to 40 years. Courses impacted are Biology, Honors Biology, AP Biology, and Environmental Science. The workshops began with a field trip to Mississippi to collect fossil shark teeth and create a virtual field trip. After the field trip, teachers do a series of activities on fossil shark teeth to illustrate evolution and introduce basic concepts such as geologic time, superposition, and faunal succession. Teachers were also given a $200 budget from which to select fossils for use in their classrooms. One of our exercises explores the evolution of the megatoothed shark lineage leading to Carcharocles megalodon, the largest predatory shark in history with teeth up to 17 cm long. Megatoothed shark teeth have an excellent fossil record and show continuous transitions in morphology from the Eocene to Pliocene. We take advantage of the curiosity of sharks shared by most people, and allow teachers to explore the variations among different shark teeth and to explain the causes of those variations. Objectives are to have teachers (and their students): 1) sort fossil shark teeth into biologically reasonable species; 2) form hypotheses about evolutionary relationships; and 3) describe and interpret evolutionary trends in the fossil Megatoothed

  5. Due Diligence for Students - Geoscience Skills and Demographic Data for Career Planning (United States)

    Keane, C. M.


    A major focus of the American Geological Institute's Human Resources program has been providing demographic and employment data so that students and mentors can better understand the dynamics of a career in the geosciences. AGI has a long history of collecting these data for the geoscience community, including 46 years of geoscience enrollments, periodic comprehensive surveys of employment in the discipline, and working closely with other organizations that collect these data. AGI has launched a new suite of surveys to examine the skills desired by employers and the skills provided through a geoscience education. Historical demographic and enrollment data allow a number of the major trends to be examined. These trends include the dominance of industry as employer in the geosciences and how the cyclicity of geoscience employment has become more complex with the development of the environmental sector over the last 30 years. Additionally, demographics are changing rapidly, with a geoscience workforce that is changing rapidly in age, gender, and background. The discipline may also be facing a change in the nature of geoscience employment, with chronic shortages of skilled geoscientists, but will job opportunities actually increase. This may not be as paradoxical as it appears. The geoindustries are attempting to adjust their strategies to dampen business cycles, which then may lead to more stable employment levels for geoscientists, but they are also broadening their vision of who can become competent geoscientists.

  6. The Oil Game: Generating Enthusiasm for Geosciences in Urban Youth in Newark, NJ (United States)

    Gates, Alexander E.; Kalczynski, Michael J.


    A hands-on game based upon principles of oil accumulation and drilling was highly effective at generating enthusiasm toward the geosciences in urban youth from underrepresented minority groups in Newark, NJ. Participating 9th-grade high school students showed little interest in the geosciences prior to participating in the oil game, even if they…

  7. Geoscience Education Research: The Role of Collaborations with Education Researchers and Cognitive Scientists (United States)

    Manduca, C. A.; Mogk, D. W.; Kastens, K. A.; Tikoff, B.; Shipley, T. F.; Ormand, C. J.; Mcconnell, D. A.


    Geoscience Education Research aims to improve geoscience teaching and learning by understanding clearly the characteristics of geoscience expertise, the path from novice to expert, and the educational practices that can speed students along this path. In addition to expertise in geoscience and education, this research requires an understanding of learning -the domain of cognitive scientists. Beginning in 2002, a series of workshops and events focused on bringing together geoscientists, education researchers, and cognitive scientists to facilitate productive geoscience education research collaborations. These activities produced reports, papers, books, websites and a blog developing a research agenda for geoscience education research at a variety of scales: articulating the nature of geoscience expertise, and the overall importance of observation and a systems approach; focusing attention on geologic time, spatial skills, field work, and complex systems; and identifying key research questions in areas where new technology is changing methods in geoscience research and education. Cognitive scientists and education researchers played critical roles in developing this agenda. Where geoscientists ask questions that spring from their rich understanding of the discipline, cognitive scientists and education researchers ask questions from their experience with teaching and learning in a wide variety of disciplines and settings. These interactions tend to crystallize the questions of highest importance in addressing challenges of geoscience learning and to identify productive targets for collaborative research. Further, they serve as effective mechanisms for bringing research techniques and results from other fields into geoscience education. Working productively at the intersection of these fields requires teams of cognitive scientists, geoscientists, and education reserachers who share enough knowledge of all three domains to have a common articulation of the research

  8. Supporting Geoscience Students at Two-Year Colleges: Career Preparation and Academic Success (United States)

    McDaris, J. R.; Kirk, K. B.; Layou, K.; Macdonald, H.; Baer, E. M.; Blodgett, R. H.; Hodder, J.


    Two-year colleges play an important role in developing a competent and creative geoscience workforce, teaching science to pre-service K-12 teachers, producing earth-science literate citizens, and providing a foundation for broadening participation in the geosciences. The Supporting and Advancing Geoscience Education in Two-Year Colleges (SAGE 2YC) project has developed web resources for geoscience faculty on the preparation and support of students in two-year colleges (2YCs). Online resources developed from two topical workshops and several national, regional, and local workshops around the country focus on two main categories: Career Preparation and Workforce Development, and Supporting Student Success in Geoscience at Two-year Colleges. The Career Preparation and Workforce Development resources were developed to help faculty make the case that careers in the geosciences provide a range of possibilities for students and to support preparation for the geoscience workforce and for transfer to four-year programs as geoscience majors. Many two-year college students are unaware of geoscience career opportunities and these materials help illuminate possible futures for them. Resources include an overview of what geoscientists do; profiles of possible careers along with the preparation necessary to qualify for them; geoscience employer perspectives about jobs and the knowledge, skills, abilities and attitudes they are looking for in their employees; employment trends in sectors of the economy that employ geoscience professionals; examples of geotechnician workforce programs (e.g. Advanced Technological Education Centers, environmental technology programs, marine technician programs); and career resources available from professional societies. The website also provides information to support student recruitment into the geosciences and facilitate student transfer to geoscience programs at four- year colleges and universities, including sections on advising support before

  9. The Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program (GDEP): A Model for Faculty and Student Engagement in Urban Geoscience Research (United States)

    Ambos, E. L.; Lee, C.; Behl, R.; Francis, R. D.; Holk, G.; Larson, D.; Rodrigue, C.; Wechsler, S.; Whitney, D.


    For the past three years (2002-2004) faculty in the departments of geological sciences, geography, and anthropology at California State University, Long Beach have joined to offer an NSF-funded (GEO-0119891) eight-week summer research experience to faculty and students at Long Beach area high schools and community colleges. GDEP's goal is to increase the numbers of students from underrepresented groups (African-American, Hispanic, American Indian, Pacific Islander, and disabled) enrolling in baccalaureate degree programs in the geosciences. The major strategies to achieve this goal all tie to the concept of research-centered experiences, which might also be termed inquiry-based instruction. More than fifteen (15) separate and diverse geoscience research studies have been conducted. These include such disparate topics as geochemical studies of fault veins, GPS/GIS surveys of vegetation patterns for fire hazard assessment, and seismic studies of offshore fault systems. As the program has matured, research projects have become more interdisciplinary, and faculty research teams have expanded. Whereas the first year, each CSULB faculty member tended to lead her/his project as a separate endeavor, by the third summer, faculty were collaborating in research teams. Several projects have involved community-based research, at sites within an hour's drive from the urban Long Beach campus. For example, last summer, four faculty linked together to conduct a comprehensive geography and geology study of an Orange County wilderness area, resulting in creation of maps, brochures, and websites for use by the general public. Another faculty group conducted geophysical surveys at an historic archaeological site in downtown Los Angeles, producing maps of underground features that will be incorporated into a cultural center and museum. Over the past three summers, the program has grown to involve more than 25 high school and community college students, and more than 30 CSULB, high

  10. Broadening Awareness and Participation in the Geosciences Among Underrepresented Minorities in STEM (United States)

    Blake, R.; Liou-Mark, J.


    An acute STEM crisis exists nationally, and the problem is even more dire among the geosciences. Since about the middle of the last century, fewer undergraduate and graduate degrees have been granted in the geosciences than in any other STEM fields. To help in ameliorating this geoscience plight, particularly from among members of racial and ethnic groups that are underrepresented in STEM fields, the New York City College of Technology (City Tech) launched a vibrant geoscience program and convened a community of STEM students who are interested in learning about the geosciences. This program creates and introduces geoscience knowledge and opportunities to a diverse undergraduate student population that was never before exposed to geoscience courses at City Tech. This geoscience project is funded by the NSF OEDG program, and it brings awareness, knowledge, and geoscience opportunities to City Tech's students in a variety of ways. Firstly, two new geoscience courses have been created and introduced. One course is on Environmental Remote Sensing, and the other course is an Introduction to the Physics of Natural Disasters. The Remote Sensing course highlights the physical and mathematical principles underlying remote sensing techniques. It covers the radiative transfer equation, atmospheric sounding techniques, interferometric and lidar systems, and an introduction to image processing. Guest lecturers are invited to present their expertise on various geoscience topics. These sessions are open to all City Tech students, not just to those students who enroll in the course. The Introduction to the Physics of Natural Disasters course is expected to be offered in Spring 2013. This highly relevant, fundamental course will be open to all students, especially to non-science majors. The course focuses on natural disasters, the processes that control them, and their devastating impacts to human life and structures. Students will be introduced to the nature, causes, risks

  11. GeoCSV: tabular text formatting for geoscience data (United States)

    Stults, M.; Arko, R. A.; Davis, E.; Ertz, D. J.; Turner, M.; Trabant, C. M.; Valentine, D. W., Jr.; Ahern, T. K.; Carbotte, S. M.; Gurnis, M.; Meertens, C.; Ramamurthy, M. K.; Zaslavsky, I.; McWhirter, J.


    The GeoCSV design was developed within the GeoWS project as a way to provide a baseline of compatibility between tabular text data sets from various sub-domains in geoscience. Funded through NSF's EarthCube initiative, the GeoWS project aims to develop common web service interfaces for data access across hydrology, geodesy, seismology, marine geophysics, atmospheric science and other areas. The GeoCSV format is an essential part of delivering data via simple web services for discovery and utilization by both humans and machines. As most geoscience disciplines have developed and use data formats specific for their needs, tabular text data can play a key role as a lowest common denominator useful for exchanging and integrating data across sub-domains. The design starts with a core definition compatible with best practices described by the W3C - CSV on the Web Working Group (CSVW). Compatibility with CSVW is intended to ensure the broadest usability of data expressed as GeoCSV. An optional, simple, but limited metadata description mechanism was added to allow inclusion of important metadata with comma separated data, while staying with the definition of a "dialect" by CSVW. The format is designed both for creating new datasets and to annotate data sets already in a tabular text format such that they are compliant with GeoCSV.

  12. Mobile devices, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and Digital Geoscience Education. (United States)

    Crompton, H.; De Paor, D. G.; Whitmeyer, S. J.; Bentley, C.


    Mobile devices are playing an increasing role in geoscience education. Affordances include instructor-student communication and class management in large classrooms, virtual and augmented reality applications, digital mapping, and crowd-sourcing. Mobile technologies have spawned the sub field of mobile learning or m-learning, which is defined as learning across multiple contexts, through social and content interactions. Geoscientists have traditionally engaged in non-digital mobile learning via fieldwork, but digital devices are greatly extending the possibilities, especially for non-traditional students. Smartphones and tablets are the most common devices but smart glasses such as Pivothead enable live streaming of a first-person view (see for example, Virtual reality headsets such as Google Cardboard create an immersive virtual field experience and digital imagery such as GigaPan and Structure from Motion enables instructors and/or students to create virtual specimens and outcrops that are sharable across the globe. Whereas virtual reality (VR) replaces the real world with a virtual representation, augmented reality (AR) overlays digital data on the live scene visible to the user in real time. We have previously reported on our use of the AR application called FreshAiR for geoscientific "egg hunts." The popularity of Pokémon Go demonstrates the potential of AR for mobile learning in the geosciences.

  13. Study on wave energy resource assessing method based on altimeter data—A case study in Northwest Pacific

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WAN Yong; ZHANG Jie; MENG Junmin; WANG Jing; DAI Yongshou


    Wave energy resource is a very important ocean renewable energy. A reliable assessment of wave energy resources must be performed before they can be exploited. Compared with wave model, altimeter can provide more accuratein situ observations for ocean wave which can be as a novel method for wave energy assessment. The advantage of altimeter data is to provide accurate significant wave height observations for wave. In order to develop characteristic and advantage of altimeter data and apply altimeter data to wave energy assessment, in this study, we established an assessing method for wave energy in local sea area which is dedicated to altimeter data. This method includes three parts including data selection and processing, establishment of evaluation indexes system and criterion of regional division. Then a case study of Northwest Pacific was performed to discuss specific application for this method. The results show that assessing method in this paper can assess reserves and temporal and spatial distribution effectively and provide scientific references for the siting of wave power plants and the design of wave energy convertors.

  14. Engaging Undergraduates in the New York City S-SAFE Internship Program: An Impetus to Raise Geoscience Awareness (United States)

    Blake, Reginald A.; Liou-Mark, Janet; Blackburn, Noel; Chan, Christopher; Yuen-Lau, Laura


    To engender and raise awareness to the geosciences, a geoscience research project and a corresponding geoscience internship program were designed around plume dispersion dynamics within and above the New York City subway system. Federal, regional, and local agencies partnered with undergraduate students from minority-serving institutions to…

  15. Engaging Undergraduates in the New York City S-SAFE Internship Program: An Impetus to Raise Geoscience Awareness (United States)

    Blake, Reginald A.; Liou-Mark, Janet; Blackburn, Noel; Chan, Christopher; Yuen-Lau, Laura


    To engender and raise awareness to the geosciences, a geoscience research project and a corresponding geoscience internship program were designed around plume dispersion dynamics within and above the New York City subway system. Federal, regional, and local agencies partnered with undergraduate students from minority-serving institutions to…

  16. Developing Curriculum to Help Students Explore the Geosciences' Cultural Relevance (United States)

    Miller, G.; Schoof, J. T.; Therrell, M. D.


    Even though climate change and an unhealthy environment have a disproportionate affect on persons of color, there is a poor record of diversity in geoscience-related fields where researchers are investigating ways to improve the quality of the environment and human health. This low percentage of representation in the geosciences is equally troubling at the university where we are beginning the third and final year of a project funded through the National Science Foundation's (NSF) Opportunities to Enhance Diversity in the Geosciences (OEDG). The purpose of this project is to explore a novel approach to using the social sciences to help students, specifically underrepresented minorities, discover the geosciences' cultural relevance and consider a career in the earth, atmospheric, and ocean sciences. To date, over 800 college freshmen have participated in a design study to evaluate the curriculum efficacy of a geoscience reader. Over half of these participants are students of color. The reader we designed allows students to analyze multiple, and sometimes conflicting, sources such as peer-reviewed journal articles, political cartoons, and newspaper articles. The topic for investigation in the reader is the 1995 Chicago Heat Wave, a tragic event that killed over 700 residents. Students use this reader in a core university course required for entering freshmen with low reading comprehension scores on standardized tests. To support students' comprehension, evaluation, and corroboration of these sources, we incorporated instructional supports aligned with the principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL), reciprocal teaching, historical reasoning, media literacy, and quantitative reasoning. Using a digital format allows students to access multiple versions of the sources they are analyzing and definitions of challenging vocabulary and scientific concepts. Qualitative and quantitative data collected from participating students and their instructors included focus

  17. OneGeology - improving access to geoscience globally (United States)

    Jackson, Ian; Asch, Kristine; Tellez-Arenas, Agnès.; Komac, Marko; Demicheli, Luca


    The OneGeology concept originated in early 2006. With the potential stimulus of the International Year of Planet Earth (IYPE) very much in mind, the challenge was: could we use IYPE to begin the creation of an interoperable digital geological dataset of the planet? Fourteen months later on the concept was unanimously endorsed by 83 representatives of the international geoscience community at a meeting in Brighton, UK, and goals were set to for a global launch at the 33rd IGC in Oslo in August 2008. The goals that the Brighton meeting agreed for OneGeology were deceptively simple. They were to: • improve the accessibility of geological map data • exchange know-how and skills so that all nations could participate • accelerate interoperability in the geosciences and the take up of a new "standard" (GeoSciML) At the time of writing (January 2010) there are 113 countries participating in OneGeology, more than 40 of which are serving data using a web map portal and protocols, registries and technology to "harvest" and serve data from around the world. An essential part of the development of OneGeology has been the exchange of know-how and provision of guidance and support so that any geological survey can participate and serve their data. The team have also moved forward and raised the profile of a crucial data model and interoperability standard - GeoSciML, which will allow geoscience data to be shared across the globe. OneGeology is coordinated through a two-part "hub" - a Secretariat based at the British Geological Survey (BGS), and the portal technology and servers provided by the French geological survey (BRGM). The "hub" is guided and supported by two international groups - the Operational Management Group (OMG) and the Technical Working Group (TWG). A Steering Group to provide strategic guidance for OneGeology and comprising geological survey directors representing the six continents was formed at the end of 2008. The Steering Group are now looking at

  18. Academic provenance: Investigation of pathways that lead students into the geosciences (United States)

    Houlton, Heather R.

    Pathways that lead students into the geosciences as a college major have not been fully explored in the current literature, despite the recent studies on the "geoscience pipeline model." Anecdotal evidence suggests low quality geoscience curriculum in K-12 education, lack of visibility of the discipline and lack of knowledge about geoscience careers contribute to low geoscience enrollments at universities. This study investigated the reasons why college students decided to major in the geosciences. Students' interests, experiences, motivations and desired future careers were examined to develop a pathway model. In addition, self-efficacy was used to inform pathway analyses, as it is an influential factor in academic major and career choice. These results and interpretations have strong implications for recruitment and retention in academia and industry. A semi-structured interview protocol was developed, which was informed by John Flanagan's critical incident theory. The responses to this interview were used to identify common experiences that diverse students shared for reasons they became geoscience majors. Researchers used self-efficacy theory by Alfred Bandura to assess students' pathways. Seventeen undergraduate geoscience majors from two U.S. Midwest research universities were sampled for cross-comparison and analysis. Qualitative analyses led to the development of six categorical steps for the geoscience pathway. The six pathway steps are: innate attributes/interest sources, pre-college critical incidents, college critical incidents, current/near future goals, expected career attributes and desired future careers. Although, how students traversed through each step was unique for individuals, similar patterns were identified between different populations in our participants: Natives, Immigrants and Refugees. In addition, critical incidents were found to act on behavior in two different ways: to support and confirm decision-making behavior (supportive critical

  19. The ENGAGE Workshop: Encouraging Networks between Geoscientists and Geoscience Education Researchers (United States)

    Hubenthal, M.; LaDue, N.; Taber, J.


    The geoscience education community has made great strides in the study of teaching and learning at the undergraduate level, particularly with respect to solid earth geology. Nevertheless, the 2012 National Research Council report, Discipline-based Education Research: Understanding and Improving Learning in Undergraduate Science and Engineering suggests that the geosciences lag behind other science disciplines in the integration of education research within the discipline and the establishment of a broad research base. In January 2015, early career researchers from earth, atmospheric, ocean, and polar sciences and geoscience education research (GER) gathered for the ENGAGE workshop. The primary goal of ENGAGE was to broaden awareness of discipline-based research in the geosciences and catalyze relationships and understanding between these groups of scientists. An organizing committee of geoscientists and GERs designed a two-day workshop with a variety of activities to engage participants in the establishment of a shared understanding of education research and the development of project ideas through collaborative teams. Thirty-three participants were selected from over 100 applicants, based on disciplinary diversity and demonstrated interest in geoscience education research. Invited speakers and panelists also provided examples of successful cross-disciplinary collaborations. As a result of this workshop, participants indicated that they gained new perspectives on geoscience education and research, networked outside of their discipline, and are likely to increase their involvement in geoscience education research. In fact, 26 of 28 participants indicated they are now better prepared to enter into cross-disciplinary collaborations within the next year. The workshop evaluation revealed that the physical scientists particularly valued opportunities for informal networking and collaborative work developing geoscience education research projects. Meanwhile, GERs valued

  20. High Demand, Core Geosciences, and Meeting the Challenges through Online Approaches (United States)

    Keane, Christopher; Leahy, P. Patrick; Houlton, Heather; Wilson, Carolyn


    As the geosciences has evolved over the last several decades, so too has undergraduate geoscience education, both from a standpoint of curriculum and educational experience. In the United States, we have been experiencing very strong growth in enrollments in geoscience, as well as employment demand for the last 7 years. That growth has been largely fueled by all aspects of the energy boom in the US, both from the energy production side and the environmental management side. Interestingly the portfolio of experiences and knowledge required are strongly congruent as evidenced from results of the American Geosciences Institute's National Geoscience Exit Survey. Likewise, the demand for new geoscientists in the US is outstripping even the nearly unprecedented growth in enrollments and degrees, which is calling into question the geosciences' inability to effectively reach into the largest growing segments of the U.S. College population - underrepresented minorities. We will also examine the results of the AGI Survey on Geoscience Online Learning and examine how the results of that survey are rectified with Peter Smith's "Middle Third" theory on "wasted talent" because of spatial, economic, and social dislocation. In particular, the geosciences are late to the online learning game in the United States and most faculty engaged in such activities are "lone wolves" in their department operating with little knowledge of the support structures that exist in such development. Yet the most cited barriers for faculty not engaging actively in online learning is the assertion that laboratory and field experiences will be lost and thus fight engaging in this medium. However, the survey shows that faculty are discovering novel approaches to address these issues, many of which have great application to enabling geoscience programs in the United States to meet the expanding demand for geoscience degrees.

  1. What can High Resolution Inertial Rotation Sensing do for the Geosciences? (Christiaan Huygens Medal Lecture) (United States)

    Schreiber, Karl Ulrich


    Strap-Down inertial gyroscopes are essential for the attitude control of aircrafts - they keep helicopters and planes in the sky. What if the same technology is strapped to the Earth? It will allow the observation and understanding of the geophysical processes behind minute changes of the rate of rotation as well as variations of the orientation of the instantaneous axis of rotation of the Earth. Unlike the highly dynamic aircraft motion geophysical signals are very small and act on much longer timescales. Therefore we have to make a suitable gyro for the application in the Geosciences significantly more sensitive and stable than aircraft gyros, improving them by many orders of magnitude. Large scale optical interferometers suggest themselves for this purpose, but the requirements are demanding. We have built and explored a variety of monolithic and heterolithic ring lasers, spanning areas between 1 and more than 800 m2. On this road of applying a locally installed high resolution active optical interferometer to a global measurement quantity (earth rotation), we have encountered a number of serious challenges some of which already puzzled Christiaan Huygens some 300 years ago.


    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tonboe, Rasmus; Andersen, Søren; Pedersen, Leif Toudal


    A radiative transfer model is used to simulate the sea ice radar altimeter effective scattering surface variability as a function of snow depth and density. Under dry snow conditions without layering these are the primary snow parameters affecting the scattering surface variability. The model...... is initialised with in situ data collected during the May 2004 GreenIce ice camp in the Lincoln Sea (73ºW; 85ºN). Our results show that the snow cover is important for the effective scattering surface depth in sea ice and thus for the range measurement, ice freeboard and ice thickness estimation....

  3. The paratympanic organ: a barometer and altimeter in the middle ear of birds? (United States)

    von Bartheld, Christopher S; Giannessi, Francesco


    A century has passed since the discovery of the paratympanic organ (PTO), a mechanoreceptive sense organ in the middle ear of birds and other tetrapods. This luminal organ contains a sensory epithelium with typical mechanosensory hair cells and may function as a barometer and altimeter. The organ is arguably the most neglected sense organ in living tetrapods. The PTO is believed to be homologous to a lateral line sense organ, the spiracular sense organ of nonteleostean fishes. Our review summarizes the current state of knowledge of the PTO and draws attention to the astounding lack of information about the unique and largely unexplored sensory modality of barometric perception.

  4. Mean sea surface and gravity investigations using TOPEX/Poseidon altimeter data (United States)

    Rapp, Richard H.


    From a broad point of view, we will be concerned with studying global ocean circulation patterns on the basis of ocean surface determinations with geoid undulation information. In addition, we will study local variations of the gravity field implied by the altimeter data. These general goals are reflected in the title of our investigation. To meet our general goal, we have defined a number of specific objectives: (1) sea surface topography representation; (2) mean sea surface determination; (3) development of local geoid models; (4) mean sea surface comparisons; (5) sea surface topographic files; and (6) gravity anomaly determination.

  5. 'Structure-from-Motion' photogrammetry: A low-cost, effective tool for geoscience applications (United States)

    Westoby, M. J.; Brasington, J.; Glasser, N. F.; Hambrey, M. J.; Reynolds, J. M.


    High-resolution topographic surveying is traditionally associated with high capital and logistical costs, so that data acquisition is often passed on to specialist third party organisations. The high costs of data collection are, for many applications in the earth sciences, exacerbated by the remoteness and inaccessibility of many field sites, rendering cheaper, more portable surveying platforms (i.e. terrestrial laser scanning or GPS) impractical. This paper outlines a revolutionary, low-cost, user-friendly photogrammetric technique for obtaining high-resolution datasets at a range of scales, termed 'Structure-from-Motion' (SfM). Traditional softcopy photogrammetric methods require the 3-D location and pose of the camera(s), or the 3-D location of ground control points to be known to facilitate scene triangulation and reconstruction. In contrast, the SfM method solves the camera pose and scene geometry simultaneously and automatically, using a highly redundant bundle adjustment based on matching features in multiple overlapping, offset images. A comprehensive introduction to the technique is presented, followed by an outline of the methods used to create high-resolution digital elevation models (DEMs) from extensive photosets obtained using a consumer-grade digital camera. As an initial appraisal of the technique, an SfM-derived DEM is compared directly with a similar model obtained using terrestrial laser scanning. This intercomparison reveals that decimetre-scale vertical accuracy can be achieved using SfM even for sites with complex topography and a range of land-covers. Example applications of SfM are presented for three contrasting landforms across a range of scales including; an exposed rocky coastal cliff; a breached moraine-dam complex; and a glacially-sculpted bedrock ridge. The SfM technique represents a major advancement in the field of photogrammetry for geoscience applications. Our results and experiences indicate SfM is an inexpensive, effective, and

  6. Infusing Geoethics One Geoscience Course at a Time (United States)

    Cronin, V. S.


    Positive change is sometimes difficult to accomplish within a university. While it might be easy to get faculty members and administrators to agree that facilitating the development of students as ethical geoscientists is a desirable goal in the abstract, formally proposing concrete plans to achieve that goal might generate negative responses and even roadblocks. For example, it might be a challenge to pass a course in geoethics through a college curriculum committee, because ethics is a topic usually taught by the philosophy faculty. Although there are recognized subfields in engineering, medical, business, and legal ethics that are commonly taught by faculty members in those respective departments, geoethics is not yet recognized in this way. A more productive approach might be to begin with change that can be accomplished simply, within existing courses. Faculty members are usually granted broad discretionary authority to decide how material is to be presented in geoscience courses, including required core courses. My suggestion is to structure a course that presents all of the material normally expected under that course title, but in such a way that the ethical dimensions are intentionally and consistently highlighted. As with any change in the way we present course material, there is a startup cost to be borne by the teacher. One cost is the time needed to deepen our understanding of applied professional and scientific ethics; however, this is more of a personal and professional benefit than a cost in the long run. Infusing a course with an awareness of ethical issues also takes prior thought and planning to be successful. But, of course, that is no different from any other improvement in science education. Impressions from a semester's effort to include geoethics in a required core course in structural geology to about 25 students will be shared. The main course topic is not particularly relevant, because there are a number of ethical questions that students

  7. Ancient Secrets of Open-Source Geoscience Software Management (Invited) (United States)

    Zender, C. S.


    Geoscience research often involves complex models and data analysis designed to test increasingly sophisticated theories. Re-use and improvement of existing models and tools can be more efficient than their re-invention, and this re-use can accelerate knowledge generation and discovery. Open Source Software (OSS) is designed and intended to be re-used, extended, and improved. Hence Earth and Space Science Models (ESSMs) intended for community use are commonly distributed with OSS or OSS-like licenses. Why is it that, despite their permissive licenses, only a relatively small fraction of ESSMs receive community adoption, improvement, and extension? One reason is that developing community geoscience software remains a difficult and perilous exercise for the practicing researcher. This presentation will intercompare the rationale and results of different software management approaches taken in my dozen years as a developer and maintainer of, and participant in, four distinct ESSMs with 10 to 10,000 users. The primary lesson learned is that geoscience research is similar to the wider OSS universe in that most participants are motivated by the desire for greater professional recognition and attribution best summarized as "mindshare". ESSM adoption often hinges on whether the tension between users and developers for mindshare manifests as cooperation or competition. ESSM project management, therefore, should promote (but not require) recognition of all contributors. More practical model management practices include mailing lists, highly visible documentation, consistent APIs, regression tests, and periodic releases to improve features and fix bugs and builds. However, most ESSMs originate as working incarnations of short-term (~three year) research projects and, as such, lack permanent institutional support. Adhering to best software practices to transition these ESSMs from personal to community models often requires sacrificing research time. Recently, funding agencies

  8. G.I.F.K. project: Geosciences Information For Kids (United States)

    Merlini, Anna Elisabetta; Grieco, Giovanni; Evardi, Mara; Oneta, Cristina; Invernizzi, Nicoletta; Aiello, Caterina


    Our GIFK program was born after the GIFT experience in 2015 when "The Geco" association attended the workshop focused on mineral resources topics. With an extremely clear vision of the fragility of our planet in relation to our "exploiting" society, we felt the need to find a new way to expose young generations to geoscience topics. With this awareness, a new scientific path for young students, named GIFK -Geosciences Information for Kids- has been created. Thanks to this program, young generations of students are involved in geoscience topics in order to bring up a more eco-aware generation in the future. Particularly, in Italy, we do need new didactic tools to bring kids into science. As part of the classic science program, often teachers do not have time to discuss about the current facts related to our planet and often students do not receive any type of "contact" with the daily scientific events from the school. This program is aimed to introduce small kids, from kindergarten to primary school, to Earth related issues. The key for the educational success is to give children the possibility to get involved in recent scientific information and to plunge into science topics. The connection with up to date scientific research or even just scientific news allows us to use media as a reinforcing tool, and provides a strong link to everyday life. In particular, the first project developed within the GIFK program deals with the amazing recent Sentinel missions performed by ESA (European Space Agency), related to the observation of the Earth from space. The main aim of this project is to discuss about environmental and exploitation problems that the Earth is facing, using satellite images in order to observe direct changes to the Earth surface overtime. Pupils are led to notice and understand how close the relation between daily life and planet Earth is and how important our behavior is even in small acts. Observing the Earth from space and in the Solar System context

  9. Workshop Results: Teaching Geoscience to K-12 Teachers (United States)

    Nahm, A.; Villalobos, J. I.; White, J.; Smith-Konter, B. R.


    A workshop for high school and middle school Earth and Space Science (ESS) teachers was held this summer (2012) as part of an ongoing collaboration between the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) and El Paso Community College (EPCC) Departments of Geological Sciences. This collaborative effort aims to build local Earth science literacy and educational support for the geosciences. Sixteen teachers from three school districts from El Paso and southern New Mexico area participated in the workshop, consisting of middle school, high school, early college high school, and dual credit faculty. The majority of the teachers had little to no experience teaching geoscience, thus this workshop provided an introduction to basic geologic concepts to teachers with broad backgrounds, which will result in the introduction of geoscience to many new students each year. The workshop's goal was to provide hands-on activities illustrating basic geologic and scientific concepts currently used in introductory geology labs/lectures at both EPCC and UTEP to help engage pre-college students. Activities chosen for the workshop were an introduction to Google Earth for use in the classroom, relative age dating and stratigraphy using volcanoes, plate tectonics utilizing the jigsaw pedagogy, and the scientific method as a think-pair-share activity. All activities where designed to be low cost and materials were provided for instructors to take back to their institutions. A list of online resources for teaching materials was also distributed. Before each activity, a short pre-test was given to the participants to gauge their level of knowledge on the subjects. At the end of the workshop, participants were given a post-test, which tested the knowledge gain made by participating in the workshop. In all cases, more correct answers were chosen in the post-test than the individual activity pre-tests, indicating that knowledge of the subjects was gained. The participants enjoyed participating in these

  10. A Categorical Framework for Model Classification in the Geosciences (United States)

    Hauhs, Michael; Trancón y Widemann, Baltasar; Lange, Holger


    Models have a mixed record of success in the geosciences. In meteorology, model development and implementation has been among the first and most successful examples of triggering computer technology in science. On the other hand, notorious problems such as the 'equifinality issue' in hydrology lead to a rather mixed reputation of models in other areas. The most successful models in geosciences are applications of dynamic systems theory to non-living systems or phenomena. Thus, we start from the hypothesis that the success of model applications relates to the influence of life on the phenomenon under study. We thus focus on the (formal) representation of life in models. The aim is to investigate whether disappointment in model performance is due to system properties such as heterogeneity and historicity of ecosystems, or rather reflects an abstraction and formalisation problem at a fundamental level. As a formal framework for this investigation, we use category theory as applied in computer science to specify behaviour at an interface. Its methods have been developed for translating and comparing formal structures among different application areas and seems highly suited for a classification of the current "model zoo" in the geosciences. The approach is rather abstract, with a high degree of generality but a low level of expressibility. Here, category theory will be employed to check the consistency of assumptions about life in different models. It will be shown that it is sufficient to distinguish just four logical cases to check for consistency of model content. All four cases can be formalised as variants of coalgebra-algebra homomorphisms. It can be demonstrated that transitions between the four variants affect the relevant observations (time series or spatial maps), the formalisms used (equations, decision trees) and the test criteria of success (prediction, classification) of the resulting model types. We will present examples from hydrology and ecology in

  11. Making Geoscience Data Relevant for Students, Teachers, and the Public (United States)

    Taber, M.; Ledley, T. S.; Prakash, A.; Domenico, B.


    The scientific data collected by government funded research belongs to the public. As such, the scientific and technical communities are responsible to make scientific data accessible and usable by the educational community. However, much geoscience data are difficult for educators and students to find and use. Such data are generally described by metadata that are narrowly focused and contain scientific language. Thus, data access presents a challenge to educators in determining if a particular dataset is relevant to their needs, and to effectively access and use the data. The AccessData project (EAR-0623136, EAR-0305058) has developed a model for bridging the scientific and educational communities to develop robust inquiry-based activities using scientific datasets in the form of Earth Exploration Toolbook (EET, chapters. EET chapters provide step-by-step instructions for accessing specific data and analyzing it with a software analysis tool to explore issues or concepts in science, technology, and mathematics. The AccessData model involves working directly with small teams made up of data providers from scientific data archives or research teams, data analysis tool specialists, scientists, curriculum developers, and educators (AccessData, The process involves a number of steps including 1) building of the team; 2) pre-workshop facilitation; 3) face-to-face 2.5 day workshop; 4) post-workshop follow-up; 5) completion and review of the EET chapter. The AccessData model has been evolved over a series of six annual workshops hosting ~10 teams each. This model has been expanded to other venues to explore expanding its scope and sustainable mechanisms. These venues include 1) workshops focused on the data collected by a large research program (RIDGE, EarthScope); 2) a workshop focused on developing a citizen scientist guide to conducting research; and 3) facilitating a team on an annual basis

  12. EarthCube: A Community Organization for Geoscience Cyberinfrastructure (United States)

    Patten, K.; Allison, M. L.


    The National Science Foundation's (NSF) EarthCube initiative is a community-driven approach to building cyberinfrastructure for managing, sharing, and exploring geoscience data and information to better address today's grand-challenge science questions. The EarthCube Test Enterprise Governance project is a two-year effort seeking to engage diverse geo- and cyber-science communities in applying a responsive approach to the development of a governing system for EarthCube. During Year 1, an Assembly of seven stakeholder groups representing the broad EarthCube community developed a draft Governance Framework. Finalized at the June 2014 EarthCube All Hands Meeting, this framework will be tested during the demonstration phase in Year 2, beginning October 2014. A brief overview of the framework: Community-elected members of the EarthCube Leadership Council will be responsible for managing strategic direction and identifying the scope of EarthCube. Three Standing Committees will also be established to oversee the development of technology and architecture, to coordinate among new and existing data facilities, and to represent the academic geosciences community in driving development of EarthCube cyberinfrastructure. An Engagement Team and a Liaison Team will support communication and partnerships with internal and external stakeholders, and a central Office will serve a logistical support function to the governance as a whole. Finally, ad hoc Working Groups and Special Interest Groups will take on other issues related to EarthCube's goals. The Year 2 demonstration phase will test the effectiveness of the proposed framework and allow for elements to be changed to better meet community needs. It will begin by populating committees and teams, and finalizing leadership and decision-making processes to move forward on community-selected priorities including identifying science drivers, coordinating emerging technical elements, and coming to convergence on system architecture. A

  13. Techniques for Efficiently Managing Large Geosciences Data Sets (United States)

    Kruger, A.; Krajewski, W. F.; Bradley, A. A.; Smith, J. A.; Baeck, M. L.; Steiner, M.; Lawrence, R. E.; Ramamurthy, M. K.; Weber, J.; Delgreco, S. A.; Domaszczynski, P.; Seo, B.; Gunyon, C. A.


    We have developed techniques and software tools for efficiently managing large geosciences data sets. While the techniques were developed as part of an NSF-Funded ITR project that focuses on making NEXRAD weather data and rainfall products available to hydrologists and other scientists, they are relevant to other geosciences disciplines that deal with large data sets. Metadata, relational databases, data compression, and networking are central to our methodology. Data and derived products are stored on file servers in a compressed format. URLs to, and metadata about the data and derived products are managed in a PostgreSQL database. Virtually all access to the data and products is through this database. Geosciences data normally require a number of processing steps to transform the raw data into useful products: data quality assurance, coordinate transformations and georeferencing, applying calibration information, and many more. We have developed the concept of crawlers that manage this scientific workflow. Crawlers are unattended processes that run indefinitely, and at set intervals query the database for their next assignment. A database table functions as a roster for the crawlers. Crawlers perform well-defined tasks that are, except for perhaps sequencing, largely independent from other crawlers. Once a crawler is done with its current assignment, it updates the database roster table, and gets its next assignment by querying the database. We have developed a library that enables one to quickly add crawlers. The library provides hooks to external (i.e., C-language) compiled codes, so that developers can work and contribute independently. Processes called ingesters inject data into the system. The bulk of the data are from a real-time feed using UCAR/Unidata's IDD/LDM software. An exciting recent development is the establishment of a Unidata HYDRO feed that feeds value-added metadata over the IDD/LDM. Ingesters grab the metadata and populate the Postgre

  14. Estimates of forest canopy height and aboveground biomass using ICESat. (United States)

    Michael A. Lefsky; David J. Harding; Michael Keller; Warren B. Cohen; Claudia C. Carabajal; Fernando Del Bom; Maria O. Hunter; Raimundo Jr. de Oliveira


    Exchange of carbon between forests and the atmosphere is a vital component of the global carbon cycle. Satellite laser altimetry has a unique capability for estimating forest canopy height, which has a direct and increasingly well understood relationship to aboveground carbon storage. While the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) onboard the Ice, Cloud and land...

  15. Tracking Geoscience Pathways from the Undergraduate Degree through the Years as an Early Career Geoscientist (Invited) (United States)

    Wilson, C. E.; Keane, C. M.; Houlton, H. R.


    The American Geosciences Institute's Workforce Program has recently launched AGI's Geoscience Student Exit Survey and the Survey of the Geoscience Workforce in an effort to provide more detailed information about the career pathways of early career geoscientists from their undergraduate degree through their first five years in the workforce. These surveys are attempting to answer long unknown questions related to the motivations of students for majoring in the geosciences, their experiences while working towards the degree, their future plans immediately after finishing their terminal degree, and their development in the workforce as they establish themselves in a career. With these surveys, AGI will be able to provide a more in depth presentation of the supply, demand, and human dynamics of the geoscience workforce. We find this effort to be very timely with the increased national focus on the STEM workforce, as well as recent discussions within the geosciences community requesting more information about the students' transition into the workforce after graduation. For AGI to be successful in this project, we need the support of geoscience departments nationally and internationally.

  16. Near-nadir microwave specular returns from the sea surface - Altimeter algorithms for wind and wind stress (United States)

    Wu, Jin


    Two approaches have been adopted to construct altimeter wind algorithms: one is based on the mean-square sea surface slope, and the other is based on the Seasat scatterometer wind. Both types of algorithms are critically reviewed with respect to the mechanism governing near-nadir sea returns and the comparison between altimeter and buoy winds. A new algorithm is proposed; it is deduced on the basis of microwave specular reflection and is finely tuned with buoy-measured winds. On the basis of this algorithm and the formula of the wind-stress coefficient, a simple wind-stress algorithm is also proposed.

  17. Be Explicit: Geoscience Program Design to Prepare the Next Generation of Geoscientists (United States)

    Mogk, D. W.


    The work of geoscientists is to engage inquiry, discovery and exploration of Earth history and processes, and increasingly, to apply this knowledge to the "grand challenges" that face humanity. Geoscience as a discipline is confronted with an incomplete geologic record, observations or data that are often ambiguous or uncertain, and a need to grasp abstract concepts such as temporal reasoning ('deep time'), spatial reasoning over many orders of magnitude, and complex system behavior. These factors provide challenges, and also opportunities, for training future geoscientists. Beyond disciplinary knowledge, it is also important to provide opportunities for students to engage the community of practice and demonstrate how to "be" a geoscientist. Inculcation of geoscience "ways of knowing" is a collective responsibility for geoscientists (teaching faculty and other professionals), at all instructional levels, in all geoscience disciplines, and for all students. A whole-student approach is recommended. Geoscience programs can be designed to focus on student success by explictly: 1) defining programmatic student learning outcomes , 2) embedding assessments throughout the program to demonstrate mastery, 3) aligning course sequences to reinforce and anticipate essential concepts/skills, 4) preparing students to be life-long learners; 5) assigning responsibilities to courses/faculty to ensure these goals have been met; 6) providing opportunities for students to "do" geoscience (research experiences), and 7) modeling professional behaviors in class, field, labs, and informal settings. Extracurricular departmental activities also contribute to student development such as journal clubs, colloquia, field trips, and internships. Successful design of geoscience department programs is informed by: the AGI Workforce program and Summit on the Future of Geoscience Education that define pathways for becoming a successful geoscientist; training in Geoethics; Geoscience Education

  18. Geoscience in Developing Countries of South Asia and International Cooperation (United States)

    Gupta, K.


    Earth Science community in developing countries of South Asia is actively engaged in interdisciplinary investigations of the Earth and its envelopes through geological, geophysical and geochemical processes, for these processes are interconnected. Interdisciplinary interaction will continue to grow since problems pertaining to the solid earth, with its core-mantle-crust, and fluid envelops can be solved only with contributions from different Science disciplines. The expanding population and revolution in data handling-and-computing have now become a necessity to tackle the geoscientific problems with modern techniques and methodologies to meet these new challenges. As a future strategy, geo-data generation and handling need to be speedier and easier and hence demands a well- knit coordiantion and understanding amongst Governments, Industries and Academic organizations. Such coordination will prove valuable for better understanding of the Earth's processes, especially mitigating natural hazards with more accurate and speedy prdictions, besides sustaining Earth's resources. South Asian geoscience must, therefore, seek new directions by way of strategies, policies, and actions to move forward in this century. Environmental and resource problems affecting the world population have become international issues, since global environmental changes demand international cooperation and planning. The Earth is continually modified by the interplay of internal and external processes. Hence we need to apply modern geophysical techniques and interpret the results with the help of available geological, geochronological and gechemical informations It is through such integrated approach that we could greatly refine our understanding of the deep structure and evolution of the Indian shield. However, the inputs into multi-disciplinary studies necessary to know the crustal structure and tectonics in the adjoining regions (Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Sri Lanka etc.) still remain

  19. Building Scientific Workflows for the Geosciences with Open Community Software (United States)

    Pierce, M. E.; Marru, S.; Weerawarana, S. M.


    We describe the design and development of the Apache Airavata scientific workflow software and its application to problems in geosciences. Airavata is based on Service Oriented Architecture principles and is developed as general purpose software for managing large-scale science applications on supercomputing resources such as the NSF's XSEDE. Based on the NSF-funded EarthCube Workflow Working Group activities, we discuss the application of this software relative to specific requirements (such as data stream data processing, event triggering, dealing with large data sets, and advanced distributed execution patterns involved in data mining). We also consider the role of governance in EarthCube software development and present the development of Airavata software through the Apache Software Foundation's community development model. We discuss the potential impacts on software accountability and sustainability using this model.

  20. Equality of opportunities in geosciences: The EGU Awards Committee experience (United States)

    Karatekin, Özgür


    Scientists are evaluated on the basis of creativity and productivity, and their scientific excellence are rewarded by scientific associations. Providing equal opportunities and ensuring balance is a strict necessity when recognizing scientific excellence. The processes and procedures that lead to the recognition of excellence has to be transparent and free of gender biases. However, establishment of clear and transparent evaluation criteria and performance metrics in order to provide equal opportunities to researchers across gender, continents and ethnic groups can be challenging since the definition of scientific excellence is elusive. This talk aims to present the experience and the efforts of the European Geosciences Union to ensure balance, with a particular focus on gender balance. Data and statistics will be presented in the attempt to provide constructive indications to get to the target of giving equal opportunities to researchers across gender, continents and ethnic groups.

  1. Developing Geosciences Research Partnerships With Colleagues from SOPAC (United States)

    Edsall, D. W.


    Members of the AGU have an opportunity to become involved in cooperative research with scientists from the Cook Islands, Fiji, Guam, Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Western Samoa as well as Australia and New Zealand. Governmental officials and scientists from the member countries of the South Pacific Applied Geoscience Commission (SOPAC) and its Science Technology and Resources Network (STAR) are looking for individuals, academic and research organizations, foundations, private industry, governmental agencies and professional societies to assist with important research efforts. Involvement would include: promoting; training; funding; equipping, facilitating; coordinating; advising; monitoring; collaborating; interpreting; evaluating and reporting. Studies in all onshore, coastal and offshore environments are needed. Topics include: development of natural resources; reduction of environmental vulnerability; support of sustainable development; development of potable water supplies; protecting coral reef environments; and basic investigations of local weather, climatology, biology, geology, geophysics and oceanography. This paper addresses ways to create such research partnerships.

  2. Environmental GeoSciences Lectures and Transversal Public Workshops (United States)

    Redondo, J. M.; Redondo, A.; Babiano, A.


    Co/organized by the Campus Universitari de la Mediterrania, which is a consortium between the City hall of Vilanova i la Geltru, The Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya and the Generalitat. A series of high level workshops and summer schools have been used to prepare specific, hands on science and scientific, divulgation material aimed at different types of public. Some of the most attractive topics in geosciences, prepared by well established scientists in collaboration with primary and secondary school teachers are used to stimulate science and environmental topics in the clasroom. A collection of CDs with lectures, videos and experimental visual results cover a wide range of topics such as: Cloud shape analysis, Cetacean Acoustics, Turbulence, Soil percolation, Dynamic Oceanograpy, Oil Pollution, Solar Physics, Rainbows and colour, Snail shell structure, etc.. Some of the most popular themes are chosen, studied and presented by the diferent aged pupils from local schools.

  3. Strategic Roadmap for the U.S. Geoscience Information Network (United States)

    Allison, M. L.; Gallagher, K. T.; Richard, S. M.; Hutchison, V. B.


    An external advisory working group has prepared a 5-year strategic roadmap for the U.S. Geoscience Information Network (USGIN). USGIN is a partnership of the Association of American State Geologists (AASG) and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), who formally agreed in 2007 to develop a national geoscience information framework that is distributed, interoperable, uses open source standards and common protocols, respects and acknowledges data ownership, fosters communities of practice to grow, and develops new Web services and clients. The intention of the USGIN is to benefit the geological surveys by reducing the cost of online data publication and access provision, and to benefit society through easier (lower cost) access to public domain geoscience data. This information supports environmental planning, resource-development, hazard mitigation design, and decision-making. USGIN supposes that sharing resources for system development and maintenance, standardizing data discovery and creating better access mechanisms, causes cost of data access and maintenance to be reduced. Standardization in a wide variety of business domains provides economic benefits that range between 0.2 and 0.9% of the gross national product. We suggest that the economic benefits of standardization also apply in the informatics domain. Standardized access to rich data resources will create collaborative opportunities in science and business. Development and use of shared protocols and interchange formats for data publication will create a market for user applications, facilitating geoscience data discovery and utility for the benefit of society. The USGIN Working Group envisions further development of tools and capabilities, in addition to extending the community of practice that currently involves geoinformatics practitioners from the USGS and AASG. Promoting engagement and participation of the state geological surveys, and increasing communication between the states, USGS, and other

  4. Altimeter data assimilation in the tropical Indian Ocean using water property conserving scheme

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Bhasha M Mankad; Rashmi Sharma; Sujit Basu; P K Pal


    Altimeter data have been assimilated in an ocean general circulation model using the water property conserving scheme. Two runs of the model have been conducted for the year 2004. In one of the runs, altimeter data have been assimilated sequentially, while in another run, assimilation has been suppressed. Assimilation has been restricted to the tropical Indian Ocean. An assessment of the strength of the scheme has been carried out by comparing the sea surface temperature (SST), simulated in the two runs, with in situ derived as well as remotely sensed observations of the same quantity. It has been found that the assimilation exhibits a significant positive impact on the simulation of SST. The subsurface effect of the assimilation could be judged by comparing the model simulated depth of the 20°C isotherm (hereafter referred to as D20), as a proxy of the thermocline depth, with the same quantity estimated from ARGO observations. In this case also, the impact is noteworthy. Effect on the dynamics has been judged by comparison of simulated surface current with observed current at a moored buoy location, and finally the impact on model sea level forecast in a free run after assimilation has been quantified in a representative example.

  5. A preliminary estimate of geoid-induced variations in repeat orbit satellite altimeter observations (United States)

    Brenner, Anita C.; Beckley, B. D.; Koblinsky, C. J.


    Altimeter satellites are often maintained in a repeating orbit to facilitate the separation of sea-height variations from the geoid. However, atmospheric drag and solar radiation pressure cause a satellite orbit to drift. For Geosat this drift causes the ground track to vary by + or - 1 km about the nominal repeat path. This misalignment leads to an error in the estimates of sea surface height variations because of the local slope in the geoid. This error has been estimated globally for the Geosat Exact Repeat Mission using a mean sea surface constructed from Geos 3 and Seasat altimeter data. Over most of the ocean the geoid gradient is small, and the repeat-track misalignment leads to errors of only 1 to 2 cm. However, in the vicinity of trenches, continental shelves, islands, and seamounts, errors can exceed 20 cm. The estimated error is compared with direct estimates from Geosat altimetry, and a strong correlation is found in the vicinity of the Tonga and Aleutian trenches. This correlation increases as the orbit error is reduced because of the increased signal-to-noise ratio.

  6. Waveform analysis of airborne synthetic aperture radar altimeter over Arctic sea ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Zygmuntowska


    Full Text Available Sea ice thickness is one of the most sensitive variables in the Arctic climate system. In order to quantify changes in sea ice thickness, CryoSat was launched in 2010 carrying a Ku-band Radar Altimeter (SIRAL designed to measure sea ice freeboard with a few centimeters accuracy. The instrument uses the synthetic aperture radar technique providing signals with a resolution of about 300 m along track. In this study, airborne Ku-band radar altimeter data over different sea ice types has been analyzed. A set of parameters has been defined to characterize the difference in strength and width of the returned power waveforms. With a Bayesian based method it is possible to classify about 80% of the waveforms by three parameters: maximum of the returned power echo, the trailing edge width and pulse peakiness. Furthermore, the radar power echo maximum can be used to minimize the rate of false detection of leads compared to the widely used Pulse Peakiness parameter. The possibility to distinguish between different ice types and open water allows to improve the freeboard retrieval and the conversion into sea ice thickness where surface type dependent values for the sea ice density and snow load can be used.

  7. Integration of radar altimeter, precision navigation, and digital terrain data for low-altitude flight (United States)

    Zelenka, Richard E.


    Avionic systems that depend on digitized terrain elevation data for guidance generation or navigational reference require accurate absolute and relative distance measurements to the terrain, especially as they approach lower altitudes. This is particularly exacting in low-altitude helicopter missions, where aggressive terrain hugging maneuvers create minimal horizontal and vertical clearances and demand precise terrain positioning. Sole reliance on airborne precision navigation and stored terrain elevation data for above-ground-level (AGL) positioning severely limits the operational altitude of such systems. A Kalman filter is presented which blends radar altimeter returns, precision navigation, and stored terrain elevation data for AGL positioning. The filter is evaluated using low-altitude helicopter flight test data acquired over moderately rugged terrain. The proposed Kalman filter is found to remove large disparities in predicted AGL altitude (i.e., from airborne navigation and terrain elevation data) in the presence of measurement anomalies and dropouts. Previous work suggested a minimum clearance altitude of 220 ft AGL for a near-terrain guidance system; integration of a radar altimeter allows for operation of that system below 50 ft, subject to obstacle-avoidance limitations.

  8. Improved threshold retracker for satellite altimeter waveform retracking over coastal sea

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GUO Jinyun; HWANG Cheiway; CHANG Xiaotao; LIU Yuting


    Data quality is a key factor for the application of satellite altimetry to geodesy and oceanography. Accuracy of altimetry is limited in the coastal area because the altimeter waveforms are seriously contaminated by topography and environmental pollution. So waveform retracking is needed to compute the range correction of geophysical data records (GDRs) for better accuracy. In this paper, a new waveform retracker named the improved threshold retracker (ITR) is put forward. The retracker first builds sub-waveforms based on leading edges detected in a waveform, then determines the middle point of each leading edge to compute the retracking range correction,finally calculates the referenced sea surface heights according to the geoid undulation from a local geopotential model and tide heights from an ocean tide model, and compares it with all retracking ranges to determine the best one. As a test, altimeter waveforms of Geosat/GM are retracked around the Taiwan coastal area. The result shows that accuracy of ITR method is two times better than that of theβ-5-parameter function-fitting method and threshold method, and three times better than that of GDRs. ITR can efficiently improve the altimetry accuracy of the coastal sea area.

  9. A preliminary estimate of geoid-induced variations in repeat orbit satellite altimeter observations (United States)

    Brenner, Anita C.; Beckley, B. D.; Koblinsky, C. J.


    Altimeter satellites are often maintained in a repeating orbit to facilitate the separation of sea-height variations from the geoid. However, atmospheric drag and solar radiation pressure cause a satellite orbit to drift. For Geosat this drift causes the ground track to vary by + or - 1 km about the nominal repeat path. This misalignment leads to an error in the estimates of sea surface height variations because of the local slope in the geoid. This error has been estimated globally for the Geosat Exact Repeat Mission using a mean sea surface constructed from Geos 3 and Seasat altimeter data. Over most of the ocean the geoid gradient is small, and the repeat-track misalignment leads to errors of only 1 to 2 cm. However, in the vicinity of trenches, continental shelves, islands, and seamounts, errors can exceed 20 cm. The estimated error is compared with direct estimates from Geosat altimetry, and a strong correlation is found in the vicinity of the Tonga and Aleutian trenches. This correlation increases as the orbit error is reduced because of the increased signal-to-noise ratio.

  10. Helping geoscience students improve their numeracy using online quizzes (United States)

    Nuttall, Anne-Marie; Stott, Tim; Sparke, Shaun


    This project aims to help geoscience undergraduates improve their competence and confidence in numeracy using online quizzes delivered via the Blackboard virtual learning environment. Numeracy materials are being developed based on actual examples used in a range of modules in the geoscience degree programmes taught at Liverpool John Moores University. This is to ensure the subject relevance which is considered vital to maintaining student interest & motivation. These materials are delivered as a collection of Blackboard quizzes on specific numeracy topics which students can access at any point in their studies, either on or off campus. Feedback and guidance is provided immediately so that a student gains a confidence boost if they get it right or else they can learn where they have gone wrong. It is intended that positive feedback and repetition/reinforcement will help build the confidence in numeracy which so many students seem to lack. The anonymous nature of the delivery means that students avoid the common fear of ‘asking a stupid question' in class, which can hamper their progress. The fact that students can access the quizzes anytime and from anywhere means that they can use the materials flexibly to suit their individual learning needs. In preliminary research, 70% of the students asked felt that they were expected to have greater numeracy skills than they possessed and 65% said that they would use numeracy support materials on Blackboard. Once fully developed and evaluated, the Blackboard quizzes can be opened up to other departments who may wish to use them with their own students.

  11. 3D Printing and Digital Rock Physics for the Geosciences (United States)

    Martinez, M. J.; Yoon, H.; Dewers, T. A.


    Imaging techniques for the analysis of porous structures have revolutionized our ability to quantitatively characterize geomaterials. For example, digital representations of rock from CT images and physics modeling based on these pore structures provide the opportunity to further advance our quantitative understanding of fluid flow, geomechanics, and geochemistry, and the emergence of coupled behaviors. Additive manufacturing, commonly known as 3D printing, has revolutionized production of custom parts, to the point where parts might be cheaper to print than to make by traditional means in a plant and ship. Some key benefits of additive manufacturing include short lead times, complex shapes, parts on demand, zero required inventory and less material waste. Even subtractive processing, such as milling and etching, may be economized by additive manufacturing. For the geosciences, recent advances in 3D printing technology may be co-opted to print reproducible porous structures derived from CT-imaging of actual rocks for experimental testing. The use of 3D printed microstructure allows us to surmount typical problems associated with sample-to-sample heterogeneity that plague rock physics testing and to test material response independent from pore-structure variability. Together, imaging, digital rocks and 3D printing potentially enables a new workflow for understanding coupled geophysical processes in a real, but well-defined setting circumventing typical issues associated with reproducibility, enabling full characterization and thus connection of physical phenomena to structure. In this talk we will discuss the possibilities that the marriage of these technologies can bring to geosciences, including examples from our current research initiatives in developing constitutive laws for transport and geomechanics via digital rock physics. Sandia National Laboratories is a multi-program laboratory managed and operated by Sandia Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of

  12. Minority Institutions Collaboration in Geoscience Education and Research (United States)

    Morris, P. A.; Austin, S. A.; Johnson, L. P.; Salgado, C.; Walter, D. K.


    The Minority University Consortium for Earth and Space Sciences (MUCESS) is a collaboration among four diverse minority institutions to increase the number of underrepresented students pursuing professional and research careers in Earth and Atmospheric Science and Space Science. The institutions that comprise MUCESS include the University of Houston-Downtown (Hispanic Serving Institution), Medgar Evers College (Other Minority University), Norfolk State University (Historically Black College/University) and South Carolina State University (Historically Black College/University). MUCESS collaborations span a range of projects in research, education and outreach in Earth and Space Science. This includes faculty research, undergraduate internships and student exchanges among our institutions as well as outreach to K-12 schools and the general public. MUCESS has recently received an award from the National Science Foundation under Solicitation NSF 04-590 "Opportunities for Enhancing Diversity in the Geosciences (OEDG)". Under this award faculty and students will be engaged in research (both undergraduate and graduate) in atmospheric science through ozonesonde launches to better understand the distribution and transport of ozone in the lower troposphere. Faculty and students will also participate in ozone observations for validation of instruments onboard the NASA Aura satellite. Additional balloon payloads will include instruments such as temperature and data logger sensors, carbon dioxide detectors, Geiger counters and digital and analog cameras. Launches will originate from Texas, New York, Vermont, South Carolina and elsewhere. This presentation describes the formation of MUCESS and the collaborative undergraduate research and outreach projects spanning six or more years. It also describes the evolution of the joint ozone investigation as well as planned activities supported by the NSF Geoscience Diversity award. Funding for the work described has been provided by

  13. Georgia Teachers in Academic Laboratories: Research Experiences in the Geosciences (United States)

    Barrett, D.


    The Georgia Intern-Fellowships for Teachers (GIFT) is a collaborative effort designed to enhance mathematics and science experiences of Georgia teachers and their students through summer research internships for teachers. By offering business, industry, public science institute and research summer fellowships to teachers, GIFT provides educators with first-hand exposure to the skills and knowledge necessary for the preparation of our future workforce. Since 1991, GIFT has placed middle and high school mathematics, science and technology teachers in over 1000 positions throughout the state. In these fellowships, teachers are involved in cutting edge scientific and engineering research, data analysis, curriculum development and real-world inquiry and problem solving, and create Action Plans to assist them in translating the experience into changed classroom practice. Since 2004, an increasing number of high school students have worked with their teachers in research laboratories. The GIFT program places an average of 75 teachers per summer into internship positions. In the summer of 2005, 83 teachers worked in corporate and research environments throughout the state of Georgia and six of these positions involved authentic research in geoscience related departments at the Georgia Institute of Technology, including aerospace engineering and the earth and atmospheric sciences laboratories. This presentation will review the history and the structure of the program including the support system for teachers and mentors as well as the emphasis on inquiry based learning strategies. The focus of the presentation will be a comparison of two placement models of the teachers placed in geoscience research laboratories: middle school earth science teachers placed in a 6 week research experience and high school teachers placed in 7 week internships with teams of 3 high school students. The presentation will include interviews with faculty to determine the value of these experiences

  14. Enhancing learning in geosciences and water engineering via lab activities (United States)

    Valyrakis, Manousos; Cheng, Ming


    This study focuses on the utilisation of lab based activities to enhance the learning experience of engineering students studying Water Engineering and Geosciences. In particular, the use of modern highly visual and tangible presentation techniques within an appropriate laboratory based space are used to introduce undergraduate students to advanced engineering concepts. A specific lab activity, namely "Flood-City", is presented as a case study to enhance the active engagement rate, improve the learning experience of the students and better achieve the intended learning objectives of the course within a broad context of the engineering and geosciences curriculum. Such activities, have been used over the last few years from the Water Engineering group @ Glasgow, with success for outreach purposes (e.g. Glasgow Science Festival and demos at the Glasgow Science Centre and Kelvingrove museum). The activity involves a specific setup of the demonstration flume in a sand-box configuration, with elements and activities designed so as to gamely the overall learning activity. Social media platforms can also be used effectively to the same goals, particularly in cases were the students already engage in these online media. To assess the effectiveness of this activity a purpose designed questionnaire is offered to the students. Specifically, the questionnaire covers several aspects that may affect student learning, performance and satisfaction, such as students' motivation, factors to effective learning (also assessed by follow-up quizzes), and methods of communication and assessment. The results, analysed to assess the effectiveness of the learning activity as the students perceive it, offer a promising potential for the use of such activities in outreach and learning.

  15. Sonification for geoscience: Listening to faults from the inside (United States)

    Barrett, Natasha; Mair, Karen


    Here we investigate the use of sonification for geoscience by sonifying the data generated in computer models of earthquake processes. Using mainly parameter mapping sonification, we explore data from our recent 3D DEM (discrete element method) models where granular debris is sheared between rough walls to simulate an evolving fault (e.g. Mair and Abe, 2011). To best appreciate the inherently 3D nature of the crushing and sliding events (continuously tracked in our models) that occur as faults slip, we use Ambisonics (a sound field recreation technology). This allows the position of individual events to be preserved generating a virtual 3D soundscape so we can explore faults from the inside. The addition of 3D audio to the sonification tool palate further allows us to more accurately connect to spatial data in a novel and engaging manner. During sonification, events such as grain scale fracturing, grain motions and interactions are mapped to specific sounds whose pitch, timbre, and volume reflect properties such as the depth, character, and size of the individual events. Our interactive and real-time approaches allow the listener to actively explore the data in time and space, listening to evolving processes by navigating through the spatial data via a 3D mouse controller. The soundscape can be heard either through an array of speakers or using a pair of headphones. Emergent phenomena in the models generate clear sound patterns that are easily spotted. Also, because our ears are excellent signal-to-noise filters, events are recognizable above the background noise. Although these features may be detectable visually, using a different sense (and part of the brain) gives a fresh perspective and facilitates a rapid appreciation of 'signals' through audio awareness, rather than specific scientific training. For this reason we anticipate significant potential for the future use of sonification in the presentation, interpretation and communication of geoscience datasets

  16. 3D Immersive Visualization: An Educational Tool in Geosciences (United States)

    Pérez-Campos, N.; Cárdenas-Soto, M.; Juárez-Casas, M.; Castrejón-Pineda, R.


    3D immersive visualization is an innovative tool currently used in various disciplines, such as medicine, architecture, engineering, video games, etc. Recently, the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) mounted a visualization theater (Ixtli) with leading edge technology, for academic and research purposes that require immersive 3D tools for a better understanding of the concepts involved. The Division of Engineering in Earth Sciences of the School of Engineering, UNAM, is running a project focused on visualization of geoscience data. Its objective is to incoporate educational material in geoscience courses in order to support and to improve the teaching-learning process, especially in well-known difficult topics for students. As part of the project, proffessors and students are trained in visualization techniques, then their data are adapted and visualized in Ixtli as part of a class or a seminar, where all the attendants can interact, not only among each other but also with the object under study. As part of our results, we present specific examples used in basic geophysics courses, such as interpreted seismic cubes, seismic-wave propagation models, and structural models from bathymetric, gravimetric and seismological data; as well as examples from ongoing applied projects, such as a modeled SH upward wave, the occurrence of an earthquake cluster in 1999 in the Popocatepetl volcano, and a risk atlas from Delegación Alvaro Obregón in Mexico City. All these examples, plus those to come, constitute a library for students and professors willing to explore another dimension of the teaching-learning process. Furthermore, this experience can be enhaced by rich discussions and interactions by videoconferences with other universities and researchers.

  17. The AR Sandbox: Augmented Reality in Geoscience Education (United States)

    Kreylos, O.; Kellogg, L. H.; Reed, S.; Hsi, S.; Yikilmaz, M. B.; Schladow, G.; Segale, H.; Chan, L.


    The AR Sandbox is a combination of a physical box full of sand, a 3D (depth) camera such as a Microsoft Kinect, a data projector, and a computer running open-source software, creating a responsive and interactive system to teach geoscience concepts in formal or informal contexts. As one or more users shape the sand surface to create planes, hills, or valleys, the 3D camera scans the surface in real-time, the software creates a dynamic topographic map including elevation color maps and contour lines, and the projector projects that map back onto the sand surface such that real and projected features match exactly. In addition, users can add virtual water to the sandbox, which realistically flows over the real surface driven by a real-time fluid flow simulation. The AR Sandbox can teach basic geographic and hydrologic skills and concepts such as reading topographic maps, interpreting contour lines, formation of watersheds, flooding, or surface wave propagation in a hands-on and explorative manner. AR Sandbox installations in more than 150 institutions have shown high audience engagement and long dwell times of often 20 minutes and more. In a more formal context, the AR Sandbox can be used in field trip preparation, and can teach advanced geoscience skills such as extrapolating 3D sub-surface shapes from surface expression, via advanced software features such as the ability to load digital models of real landscapes and guiding users towards recreating them in the sandbox. Blueprints, installation instructions, and the open-source AR Sandbox software package are available at .

  18. Building a Network of Internships for a Diverse Geoscience Community (United States)

    Sloan, V.; Haacker-Santos, R.; Pandya, R.


    Individual undergraduate internship programs, however effective, are not sufficient to address the lack of diversity in the geoscience workforce. Rather than competing with each other for a small pool of students from historically under-represented groups, REU and internship programs might share recruiting efforts and application processes. For example, in 2011, the RESESS program at UNAVCO and the SOARS program at UCAR shared recruiting websites and advertising. This contributed to a substantial increase in the number of applicants to the RESESS program, the majority of which were from historically under-represented groups. RESESS and SOARS shared qualified applications with other REU/internship programs and helped several additional minority students secure summer internships. RESESS and SOARS also leveraged their geographic proximity to pool resources for community building activities, a two-day science field trip, a weekly writing workshop, and our final poster session. This provided our interns with an expanded network of peers and gave our staff opportunities to work together on planning. Recently we have reached out to include other programs and agencies in activities for our interns, such as mentoring high-school students, leading outreach to elementary school students, and exposing our interns to geoscience careers options and graduate schools. Informal feedback from students suggests that they value these interactions and appreciate learning with interns from partner programs. Through this work, we are building a network of program managers who support one another professionally and share effective strategies. We would like to expand that network, and future plans include a workshop with university partners and an expanded list of REU programs to explore further collaborations.

  19. Finding faults: analogical comparison supports spatial concept learning in geoscience. (United States)

    Jee, Benjamin D; Uttal, David H; Gentner, Dedre; Manduca, Cathy; Shipley, Thomas F; Sageman, Bradley


    A central issue in education is how to support the spatial thinking involved in learning science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). We investigated whether and how the cognitive process of analogical comparison supports learning of a basic spatial concept in geoscience, fault. Because of the high variability in the appearance of faults, it may be difficult for students to learn the category-relevant spatial structure. There is abundant evidence that comparing analogous examples can help students gain insight into important category-defining features (Gentner in Cogn Sci 34(5):752-775, 2010). Further, comparing high-similarity pairs can be especially effective at revealing key differences (Sagi et al. 2012). Across three experiments, we tested whether comparison of visually similar contrasting examples would help students learn the fault concept. Our main findings were that participants performed better at identifying faults when they (1) compared contrasting (fault/no fault) cases versus viewing each case separately (Experiment 1), (2) compared similar as opposed to dissimilar contrasting cases early in learning (Experiment 2), and (3) viewed a contrasting pair of schematic block diagrams as opposed to a single block diagram of a fault as part of an instructional text (Experiment 3). These results suggest that comparison of visually similar contrasting cases helped distinguish category-relevant from category-irrelevant features for participants. When such comparisons occurred early in learning, participants were more likely to form an accurate conceptual representation. Thus, analogical comparison of images may provide one powerful way to enhance spatial learning in geoscience and other STEM disciplines.

  20. OneGeology - Access to geoscience for all (United States)

    Komac, Marko; Lee, Kathryn; Robida, Francois


    OneGeology is an initiative of Geological Survey Organisations (GSO) around the globe that dates back to Brighton, UK in 2007. Since then OneGeology has been a leader in developing geological online map data using a new international standard - a geological exchange language known as 'GeoSciML'. Increased use of this new language allows geological data to be shared and integrated across the planet with other organisations. One of very important goals of OneGeology was a transfer of valuable know-how to the developing world, hence shortening the digital learning curve. In autumn 2013 OneGeology was transformed into a Consortium with a clearly defined governance structure, making its structure more official, its operability more flexible and its membership more open where in addition to GSO also to other type of organisations that manage geoscientific data can join and contribute. The next stage of the OneGeology initiative will hence be focused into increasing the openness and richness of that data from individual countries to create a multi-thematic global geological data resource on the rocks beneath our feet. Authoritative information on hazards and minerals will help to prevent natural disasters, explore for resources (water, minerals and energy) and identify risks to human health on a planetary scale. With this new stage also renewed OneGeology objectives were defined and these are 1) to be the provider of geoscience data globally, 2) to ensure exchange of know-how and skills so all can participate, and 3) to use the global profile of 1G to increase awareness of the geosciences and their relevance among professional and general public. We live in a digital world that enables prompt access to vast amounts of open access data. Understanding our world, the geology beneath our feet and environmental challenges related to geology calls for accessibility of geoscientific data and OneGeology Portal ( is the place to find them.

  1. How to detect melting in laser heating diamond anvil cell

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    Research on the melting phenomenon is the most challenging work in the high pressure/temperature field. Until now, large discrepancies still exist in the melting curve of iron, the most interesting and extensively studied element in geoscience research. Here we present a summary about techniques detecting melting in the laser heating diamond anvil cell.

  2. Geosciences: An Open Access Journal on Earth and Planetary Sciences and Their Interdisciplinary Approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jesus Martinez-Frias


    Full Text Available On behalf of the Editorial Board and the editorial management staff of MDPI, it is my great pleasure to introduce this new journal Geosciences. Geosciences is an international, peer-reviewed open access journal, which publishes original papers, rapid communications, technical notes and review articles, and discussions about all interdisciplinary aspects of the earth and planetary sciences. Geosciences may also include papers presented at scientific conferences (proceedings or articles on a well defined topic assembled by individual editors or organizations/institutions (special publications.

  3. Ocean topography mapping, improvement of the marine geoid, and global permanent ocean circulation studies from TOPEX/Poseidon altimeter data (United States)

    Marsh, James G.; Lerch, F. J.; Koblinsky, C. J.; Nerem, R. S.; Klosko, S. M.; Williamson, R. G.


    The TOPEX/POSEIDON altimeter measurements will be the first global observations of the sea surface with accuracy sufficient to make quantitative determinations of the ocean's general circulation and its variations. These measurements are an important step to understanding global change in the ocean and its impact on the climate. Our investigation will focus on the examination of features in the sea surface elevation at the largest spatial and temporal scales. TOPEX/POSEIDON altimeter measurements will be used in conjunction with observations from past satellite-altimeter missions, such as NASA's GEOS-3 and Seasat, the U.S. Navy's Geosat and SALT, and the European Remote Sensing satellite in order to address the following issues: (1) Improve models of the marine geoid, especially at wavelengths needed to understand the basin-scale ocean dynamic topograpy. (2) Measure directly from the altimeter data the expression of the mean global ocean circulation in the sea surface at the largest scales through a simultaneous solution for gravity, orbital, and oceanographic parameters. (3) Examine the sea surface measurements for changes in global ocean mass or volume, interannual variations in the basin-scale ocean circulation, and annual changes in the heating and cooling of the upper ocean.

  4. Signatures of Kelvin and Rossby wave propagation in the northern Indian Ocean from TOPEX/POSEIDON Altimeter

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    PrasannaKumar, S.; Unnikrishnan, A.S.; Muraleedharan, P.M.

    The climatological monthly mean sea surface height (SSH) anomalies derived from T/P altimeter in the northern Indian Ocean, during 1993 to 1997, are used to prepare time-longitude plots. Along the equator they reveal strong semi-annual variability...

  5. Dynamic sea surface topography, gravity, and improved orbit accuracies from the direct evaluation of Seasat altimeter data (United States)

    Marsh, J. G.; Koblinsky, C. J.; Lerch, F.; Klosko, S. M.; Robbins, J. W.


    A gravitational model incorporating Seasat altimetry, surface gravimetry, and satellite tracking data has been determined in terms of global spherical harmonics complete to degree and order 50. This model, PGS-3337, uses altimeter data as a dynamic observation of the satellite's height above the sea surface. A solution for the ocean's dynamic topography is recovered simultaneously with the orbit parameters, gravity, and ocean tidal terms. The recovered dynamic topography reveals the global long wavelength circulation of the oceans with a resolution of 2000 km and is very similar to the mean upper ocean dynamic height derived from historical ship observations. The PGS-3337 geoid has an uncertainty of 60 cm rms globally but 25 cm rms over the ocean because of the altimeter measurements. Seasat orbits determined in this solution have an estimated accuracy for the radial position of 20 cm rms. The difference between the altimeter observed sea height and the geoid plus dynamic topography model is 30 cm rms. Contained in these residuals are the sea height variability, as well as errors from the geoid, orbits, tidal models, and altimeter range measurement. This performance level is 2 to 3 times better than that achieved with previous Goddard gravitational models.

  6. The IUGS Task Group on Global Geoscience Professionalism - promoting professional skills professionalism in the teaching, research and application of geoscience for the protection and education of the public (United States)

    Allington, Ruth; Fernandez-Fuentes, Isabel


    A new IUGS Task Group entitled the Task Group on Global Geoscience Professionalism was formed in 2012 and launched at a symposium at the 341GC in Brisbane on strengthening communication between fundamental and applied geosciences and between geoscientists and public. The Task Group aims to ensure that the international geoscience community is engaged in a transformation of its profession so as to embed the need for a professional skills base alongside technical and scientific skills and expertise, within a sound ethical framework in all arenas of geoscience practice. This needs to be established during training and education and reinforced as CPD throughout a career in geoscience as part of ensuring public safety and effective communication of geoscience concepts to the public. The specific objective of the Task Group on Global Geoscience Professionalism that is relevant to this poster session is: • To facilitate a more 'joined up' geoscience community fostering better appreciation by academics and teachers of the professional skills that geoscientists need in the workplace, and facilitate better communication between academic and applied communities leading to more effective application of research findings and technology to applied practitioners and development of research programmes that truly address urgent issues. Other Task Group objectives are: • To provide a specific international forum for discussion of matters of common concern and interest among geoscientists and geoscientific organizations involved in professional affairs, at the local, national and international level; • To act as a resource to IUGS on professional affairs in the geosciences as they may influence and impact "Earth Science for the Global Community" in general - both now and in the future; • To offer and provide leadership and knowledge transfer services to countries and geoscientist communities around the world seeking to introduce systems of professional governance and self

  7. Mean sea surface and geoid gradient comparisons with TOPEX altimeter data (United States)

    Rapp, Richard H.; Yi, Yuchan; Wang, Yan Ming


    Cycles 4 to 54 of TOPEX data have been analyzed through comparisons with the mean sea surface given on the disturbed geophysical data record (GDR). Two inverted barometer correction procedures were considered for the data reduction. One used a constant atmospheric pressure for all data while the one adopted for use, for most computations, introduced a cycle average pressure. The maximum difference between the two estimates was 3.0 cm with a clear annual signal. With the modified correction the TOPEX sea surface was compared to The Ohio State University (OSU) mean sea surface, given on the GDR, to estimate three translations ( delta x = -2.3 cm; delta y = 25.0 cm; delta z = -0.3 cm) and a bias (43.3 cm) between the two surfaces. The only significant translation is delta y which indicates the reference frame of the TOPEX system differs from that used in the OSU mean sea surface system. The bias between the TOPEX mean sea surface and the OSU mean sea surface was used to estimate an equatorial radius of 6,378,136.55 m based on an 18-cm biased estimate of the TOPEX altimeter. Examination of the average difference, by cycle, between the TOPEX sea surface and the OSU mean sea surface suggested a bias change of 3.1 +/- 2.2 mm/yr with a positive sign indicating the average ocean surface is rising or the altimeter measured distance is decreasing. Models were implemented that solved directly for a bias, bias rate annual/semiannual, and tide correction terms. The computations indicated that a simultaneous solution for this bias, bias rate, and annual/semiannual terms gave the most accurate results. Nonsimultaneous solutions led to slightly different bias rate values. The root mean square difference between the TOPEX sea surface and OSU sea surface, after translation and bias correction, was +/- 17 cm for a typical cycle. Some locations were indentified where the difference could reach 2.3 cm and were repeated over several cycles indicating errors in the mean sea surface. Most

  8. Acceleration of Sea Level Rise Over Malaysian Seas from Satellite Altimeter (United States)

    Hamid, A. I. A.; Din, A. H. M.; Khalid, N. F.; Omar, K. M.


    Sea level rise becomes our concern nowadays as a result of variously contribution of climate change that cause by the anthropogenic effects. Global sea levels have been rising through the past century and are projected to rise at an accelerated rate throughout the 21st century. Due to this change, sea level is now constantly rising and eventually will threaten many low-lying and unprotected coastal areas in many ways. This paper is proposing a significant effort to quantify the sea level trend over Malaysian seas based on the combination of multi-mission satellite altimeters over a period of 23 years. Eight altimeter missions are used to derive the absolute sea level from Radar Altimeter Database System (RADS). Data verification is then carried out to verify the satellite derived sea level rise data with tidal data. Eight selected tide gauge stations from Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak are chosen for this data verification. The pattern and correlation of both measurements of sea level anomalies (SLA) are evaluated over the same period in each area in order to produce comparable results. Afterwards, the time series of the sea level trend is quantified using robust fit regression analysis. The findings clearly show that the absolute sea level trend is rising and varying over the Malaysian seas with the rate of sea level varies and gradually increase from east to west of Malaysia. Highly confident and correlation level of the 23 years measurement data with an astonishing root mean square difference permits the absolute sea level trend of the Malaysian seas has raised at the rate 3.14 ± 0.12 mm yr-1 to 4.81 ± 0.15 mm yr-1 for the chosen sub-areas, with an overall mean of 4.09 ± 0.12 mm yr-1. This study hopefully offers a beneficial sea level information to be applied in a wide range of related environmental and climatology issue such as flood and global warming.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. I. A. Hamid


    Full Text Available Sea level rise becomes our concern nowadays as a result of variously contribution of climate change that cause by the anthropogenic effects. Global sea levels have been rising through the past century and are projected to rise at an accelerated rate throughout the 21st century. Due to this change, sea level is now constantly rising and eventually will threaten many low-lying and unprotected coastal areas in many ways. This paper is proposing a significant effort to quantify the sea level trend over Malaysian seas based on the combination of multi-mission satellite altimeters over a period of 23 years. Eight altimeter missions are used to derive the absolute sea level from Radar Altimeter Database System (RADS. Data verification is then carried out to verify the satellite derived sea level rise data with tidal data. Eight selected tide gauge stations from Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak are chosen for this data verification. The pattern and correlation of both measurements of sea level anomalies (SLA are evaluated over the same period in each area in order to produce comparable results. Afterwards, the time series of the sea level trend is quantified using robust fit regression analysis. The findings clearly show that the absolute sea level trend is rising and varying over the Malaysian seas with the rate of sea level varies and gradually increase from east to west of Malaysia. Highly confident and correlation level of the 23 years measurement data with an astonishing root mean square difference permits the absolute sea level trend of the Malaysian seas has raised at the rate 3.14 ± 0.12 mm yr-1 to 4.81 ± 0.15 mm yr-1 for the chosen sub-areas, with an overall mean of 4.09 ± 0.12 mm yr-1. This study hopefully offers a beneficial sea level information to be applied in a wide range of related environmental and climatology issue such as flood and global warming.

  10. Geoscience educational e-gaming to provide stimulating and effective learning



    Most current HE students will have grown up with computer and e-gaming technologies and may respond positively to education gaming as stimulating and effective learning tools. This interactive workshop will allow participants to individually use and evaluate two geoscience e-games that have been specifically developed for geoscience students and funded by the HEA. The egames are available to use on various commercial hardware, including on internet-connected computers, iPhone, iPad and Androi...

  11. D Geological Framework Models as a Teaching Aid for Geoscience (United States)

    Kessler, H.; Ward, E.; Geological ModelsTeaching Project Team


    3D geological models have great potential as a resource for universities when teaching foundation geological concepts as it allows the student to visualise and interrogate UK geology. They are especially useful when dealing with the conversion of 2D field, map and GIS outputs into three dimensional geological units, which is a common problem for all students of geology. Today’s earth science students use a variety of skills and processes during their learning experience including the application of schema’s, spatial thinking, image construction, detecting patterns, memorising figures, mental manipulation and interpretation, making predictions and deducing the orientation of themselves and the rocks. 3D geological models can reinforce spatial thinking strategies and encourage students to think about processes and properties, in turn helping the student to recognise pre-learnt geological principles in the field and to convert what they see at the surface into a picture of what is going on at depth. Learning issues faced by students may also be encountered by experts, policy managers, and stakeholders when dealing with environmental problems. Therefore educational research of student learning in earth science may also improve environmental decision making. 3D geological framework models enhance the learning of Geosciences because they: ● enable a student to observe, manipulate and interpret geology; in particular the models instantly convert two-dimensional geology (maps, boreholes and cross-sections) into three dimensions which is a notoriously difficult geospatial skill to acquire. ● can be orientated to whatever the user finds comfortable and most aids recognition and interpretation. ● can be used either to teach geosciences to complete beginners or add to experienced students body of knowledge (whatever point that may be at). Models could therefore be packaged as a complete educational journey or students and tutor can select certain areas of the model

  12. AWG, Enhancing Professional Skills, Providing Resources and Assistance for Women in the Geosciences (United States)

    Sundermann, C.; Cruse, A. M.; AssociationWomen Geoscientists


    The Association for Women Geoscientists (AWG) was founded in 1977. AWG is an international organization, with ten chapters, devoted to enhancing the quality and level of participation of women in geosciences, and introducing women and girls to geoscience careers. Our diverse interests and expertise cover the entire spectrum of geoscience disciplines and career paths, providing unexcelled networking and mentoring opportunities to develop leadership skills. Our membership is brought together by a common love of earth, atmospheric and ocean sciences, and the desire to ensure rewarding opportunities for women in the geosciences. AWG offers a variety of scholarships, including the Chrysalis scholarship for women who are returning to school after a life-changing interruption, and the Sands and Takken awards for students to make presentations at professional meetings. AWG promotes professional development through workshops, an online bi-monthly newsletter, more timely e-mailed newsletters, field trips, and opportunities to serve in an established professional organization. AWG recognizes the work of outstanding women geoscientists and of outstanding men supporters of women in the geosciences. The AWG Foundation funds ten scholarships, a Distinguished Lecture Program, the Geologist-in-the-Parks program, Science Fair awards, and numerous Girl Scout programs. Each year, AWG sends a contingent to Congressional Visits Day, to help educate lawmakers about the unique challenges that women scientists face in the geoscience workforce.

  13. National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT) support for the Next Generation Science Standards (Invited) (United States)

    Buhr Sullivan, S. M.; Awad, A. A.; Manduca, C. A.


    The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) represents the best opportunity for geosciences education since 1996, describing a vision of teaching excellence and placing Earth and space science on a par with other disciplines. However, significant, sustained support and relationship-building between disciplinary communities must be forthcoming in order to realize the potential. To realize the vision, teacher education, curricula, assessments, administrative support and workforce/college readiness expectations must be developed. The National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT), a geoscience education professional society founded in 1938, is comprised of members across all educational contexts, including undergraduate faculty, pre-college teachers, informal educators, geoscience education researchers and teacher educators. NAGT support for NGSS includes deep collections of relevant digital learning resources, professional development workshops, models of cross-discipline sustainability education at the undergraduate and teacher preparation levels, member voices in support of geoscience education, and reach into introductory courses and teacher preparation programs. This presentation will describe implications of NGSS for the geoscience education community and highlight some opportunities for the path forward.

  14. GeoSegmenter: A statistically learned Chinese word segmenter for the geoscience domain (United States)

    Huang, Lan; Du, Youfu; Chen, Gongyang


    Unlike English, the Chinese language has no space between words. Segmenting texts into words, known as the Chinese word segmentation (CWS) problem, thus becomes a fundamental issue for processing Chinese documents and the first step in many text mining applications, including information retrieval, machine translation and knowledge acquisition. However, for the geoscience subject domain, the CWS problem remains unsolved. Although a generic segmenter can be applied to process geoscience documents, they lack the domain specific knowledge and consequently their segmentation accuracy drops dramatically. This motivated us to develop a segmenter specifically for the geoscience subject domain: the GeoSegmenter. We first proposed a generic two-step framework for domain specific CWS. Following this framework, we built GeoSegmenter using conditional random fields, a principled statistical framework for sequence learning. Specifically, GeoSegmenter first identifies general terms by using a generic baseline segmenter. Then it recognises geoscience terms by learning and applying a model that can transform the initial segmentation into the goal segmentation. Empirical experimental results on geoscience documents and benchmark datasets showed that GeoSegmenter could effectively recognise both geoscience terms and general terms.

  15. Regional CalVal of Altimeter Range at Non-Dedicated Sites in Preparation f Sentinel-3 (United States)

    Cancet, M.; Watson, C.; Haines, B.; Bonnefond, P.; Lyard, F.; Femenias, P.; Guinle, T.


    In situ calibration ensures regular and long-term control of the altimeter sea surface height (SSH) time series through comparisons with independent records. Usually, in situ calibration and validation of altimeter SSH is undertaken at specific CALVAL sites through the direct comparison of the altimeter data with in situ data [1]. However, NOVELTIS has developed a regional CALVAL technique, which aims at increasing the number and the repeatability of the altimeter bias assessments by determining the altimeter bias both on overflying passes and on satellite passes located far away from the calibration site. In principle this extends the single site approach to a wider regional scale, thus reinforcing the link between the local and the global CALVAL analyses. It also provides a means to maintain a calibration time series through periods of data-outage at a specific dedicated calibration site. The regional method was initially developed at the Corsican calibration sites of Senetosa and Ajaccio. The method was used to compute the biases of Jason-1, Jason-2 and Envisat (before and after the orbit change in 2010) at both sites, and proved its stability and generality through this cross-calibration exercise [2]. These last years, the regional method was successfully implemented at the Californian site of Harvest and at the Australian site of Bass Strait, in close collaboration with JPL and the University of Tasmania, respectively. These recent studies gave the first Envisat absolute bias estimates at non-dedicated sites using the same method, and showed high consistency with the analyses of the global CALVAL teams and the work of the in situ CALVAL teams. These results highlight the numerous advantages of this technique for monitoring missions on any orbits such as the future Sentinel-3 and Jason-CS/Sentinel-6 missions.

  16. Impact cratering – fundamental process in geoscience and planetary science

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    J K Pati; W U Reimold


    Impact cratering is a geological process characterized by ultra-fast strain rates, which generates extreme shock pressure and shock temperature conditions on and just below planetary surfaces. Despite initial skepticism, this catastrophic process has now been widely accepted by geoscientists with respect to its importance in terrestrial – indeed, in planetary – evolution. About 170 impact structures have been discovered on Earth so far, and some more structures are considered to be of possible impact origin. One major extinction event, at the Cretaceous–Paleogene boundary, has been firmly linked with catastrophic impact, but whether other important extinction events in Earth history, including the so-called “Mother of All Mass Extinctions” at the Permian–Triassic boundary, were triggered by huge impact catastrophes is still hotly debated and a subject of ongoing research. There is a beneficial side to impact events as well, as some impact structures worldwide have been shown to contain significant (in some cases, world class) ore deposits, including the gold– uranium province of the Witwatersrand basin in South Africa, the enormous Ni and PGE deposits of the Sudbury structure in Canada, as well as important hydrocarbon resources, especially in North America. Impact cratering is not a process of the past, and it is mandatory to improve knowledge of the past-impact record on Earth to better constrain the probability of such events in the future. In addition, further improvement of our understanding of the physico–chemical and geological processes fundamental to the impact cratering process is required for reliable numerical modeling of the process, and also for the correlation of impact magnitude and environmental effects. Over the last few decades, impact cratering has steadily grown into an integrated discipline comprising most disciplines of the geosciences as well as planetary science, which has created positive spin-offs including the study of

  17. The European Network of Analytical and Experimental Laboratories for Geosciences (United States)

    Freda, Carmela; Funiciello, Francesca; Meredith, Phil; Sagnotti, Leonardo; Scarlato, Piergiorgio; Troll, Valentin R.; Willingshofer, Ernst


    Integrating Earth Sciences infrastructures in Europe is the mission of the European Plate Observing System (EPOS).The integration of European analytical, experimental, and analogue laboratories plays a key role in this context and is the task of the EPOS Working Group 6 (WG6). Despite the presence in Europe of high performance infrastructures dedicated to geosciences, there is still limited collaboration in sharing facilities and best practices. The EPOS WG6 aims to overcome this limitation by pushing towards national and trans-national coordination, efficient use of current laboratory infrastructures, and future aggregation of facilities not yet included. This will be attained through the creation of common access and interoperability policies to foster and simplify personnel mobility. The EPOS ambition is to orchestrate European laboratory infrastructures with diverse, complementary tasks and competences into a single, but geographically distributed, infrastructure for rock physics, palaeomagnetism, analytical and experimental petrology and volcanology, and tectonic modeling. The WG6 is presently organizing its thematic core services within the EPOS distributed research infrastructure with the goal of joining the other EPOS communities (geologists, seismologists, volcanologists, etc...) and stakeholders (engineers, risk managers and other geosciences investigators) to: 1) develop tools and services to enhance visitor programs that will mutually benefit visitors and hosts (transnational access); 2) improve support and training activities to make facilities equally accessible to students, young researchers, and experienced users (training and dissemination); 3) collaborate in sharing technological and scientific know-how (transfer of knowledge); 4) optimize interoperability of distributed instrumentation by standardizing data collection, archive, and quality control standards (data preservation and interoperability); 5) implement a unified e-Infrastructure for data

  18. Dynamic Web Services for Data Analysis in the Geosciences (United States)

    Erlebacher, G.; Lu, Z.; Gadgil, H.; Bollig, E. F.; Kadlec, B. J.; Yuen, D. A.; Pierce, M.; Pallickara, S.


    software package Amira [2]) which is finally returned to one or more clients. Collaboration between two or more users are also demonstrated, along with fault tolerance. References [1] S. Pallickara and G. Fox, NaradaBrokering: A Middleware Framework and Architec-ture for Enabling Durable Peer-to-Peer Grid, in Proceedings of ACM/IFIP/USENIX International Middleware Conference Middleware-2003. pp 41-61, (2003). [2] Y. Wang, D.A. Yuen, Z. Garbow, and G. Erlebacher, Web-based Service of a Visualization Package Amira for the Geosciences, Visual Geosciences, Springer-Verlag, (2003).

  19. Using Google Streetview Panoramic Imagery for Geoscience Education (United States)

    De Paor, D. G.; Dordevic, M. M.


    Google Streetview is a feature of Google Maps and Google Earth that allows viewers to switch from map or satellite view to 360° panoramic imagery recorded close to the ground. Most panoramas are recorded by Google engineers using special cameras mounted on the roofs of cars. Bicycles, snowmobiles, and boats have also been used and sometimes the camera has been mounted on a backpack for off-road use by hikers and skiers or attached to scuba-diving gear for "Underwater Streetview (sic)." Streetview panoramas are linked together so that the viewer can change viewpoint by clicking forward and reverse buttons. They therefore create a 4-D touring effect. As part of the GEODE project ("Google Earth for Onsite and Distance Education"), we are experimenting with the use of Streetview imagery for geoscience education. Our web-based test application allows instructors to select locations for students to study. Students are presented with a set of questions or tasks that they must address by studying the panoramic imagery. Questions include identification of rock types, structures such as faults, and general geological setting. The student view is locked into Streetview mode until they submit their answers, whereupon the map and satellite views become available, allowing students to zoom out and verify their location on Earth. Student learning is scaffolded by automatic computerized feedback. There are lots of existing Streetview panoramas with rich geological content. Additionally, instructors and members of the general public can create panoramas, including 360° Photo Spheres, by stitching images taken with their mobiles devices and submitting them to Google for evaluation and hosting. A multi-thousand-dollar, multi-directional camera and mount can be purchased from This allows power users to generate their own high-resolution panoramas. A cheaper, 360° video camera is soon to be released according to Thus there are opportunities for

  20. Semantics-Based Interoperability Framework for the Geosciences (United States)

    Sinha, A.; Malik, Z.; Raskin, R.; Barnes, C.; Fox, P.; McGuinness, D.; Lin, K.


    Interoperability between heterogeneous data, tools and services is required to transform data to knowledge. To meet geoscience-oriented societal challenges such as forcing of climate change induced by volcanic eruptions, we suggest the need to develop semantic interoperability for data, services, and processes. Because such scientific endeavors require integration of multiple data bases associated with global enterprises, implicit semantic-based integration is impossible. Instead, explicit semantics are needed to facilitate interoperability and integration. Although different types of integration models are available (syntactic or semantic) we suggest that semantic interoperability is likely to be the most successful pathway. Clearly, the geoscience community would benefit from utilization of existing XML-based data models, such as GeoSciML, WaterML, etc to rapidly advance semantic interoperability and integration. We recognize that such integration will require a "meanings-based search, reasoning and information brokering", which will be facilitated through inter-ontology relationships (ontologies defined for each discipline). We suggest that Markup languages (MLs) and ontologies can be seen as "data integration facilitators", working at different abstraction levels. Therefore, we propose to use an ontology-based data registration and discovery approach to compliment mark-up languages through semantic data enrichment. Ontologies allow the use of formal and descriptive logic statements which permits expressive query capabilities for data integration through reasoning. We have developed domain ontologies (EPONT) to capture the concept behind data. EPONT ontologies are associated with existing ontologies such as SUMO, DOLCE and SWEET. Although significant efforts have gone into developing data (object) ontologies, we advance the idea of developing semantic frameworks for additional ontologies that deal with processes and services. This evolutionary step will

  1. On-line Geoscience Data Resources for Today's Undergraduates (United States)

    Goodwillie, A. M.; Ryan, W.; Carbotte, S.; Melkonian, A.; Coplan, J.; Arko, R.; O'Hara, S.; Ferrini, V.; Leung, A.; Bonckzowski, J.


    Broadening the experience of undergraduates can be achieved by enabling free, unrestricted and convenient access to real scientific data. With funding from the U.S. National Science Foundation, the Marine Geoscience Data System (MGDS) ( serves as the integrated data portal for various NSF-funded projects and provides free public access and preservation to a wide variety of marine and terrestrial data including rock, fluid, biology and sediment samples information, underway geophysical data and multibeam bathymetry, water column and multi-channel seismics data. Users can easily view the locations of cruise tracks, sample and station locations against a backdrop of a multi-resolution global digital elevation model. A Search For Data web page rapidly extracts data holdings from the database and can be filtered on data and device type, field program ID, investigator name, geographical and date bounds. The data access experience is boosted by the MGDS use of standardised OGC-compliant Web Services to support uniform programmatic interfaces. GeoMapApp (, a free MGDS data visualization tool, supports map-based dynamic exploration of a broad suite of geosciences data. Built-in land and marine data sets include tectonic plate boundary compilations, DSDP/ODP core logs, earthquake events, seafloor photos, and submersible dive tracks. Seamless links take users to data held by external partner repositories including PetDB, UNAVCO, IRIS and NGDC. Users can generate custom maps and grids and import their own data sets and grids. A set of short, video-style on-line tutorials familiarises users step- by-step with GeoMapApp functionality ( Virtual Ocean ( combines the functionality of GeoMapApp with a 3-D earth browser built using the NASA WorldWind API for a powerful new data resource. MGDS education involvement (, go to Education tab

  2. Enhancing Geoscience Research Discovery Through the Semantic Web (United States)

    Rowan, Linda R.; Gross, M. Benjamin; Mayernik, Matthew; Khan, Huda; Boler, Frances; Maull, Keith; Stott, Don; Williams, Steve; Corson-Rikert, Jon; Johns, Erica M.; Daniels, Michael; Krafft, Dean B.; Meertens, Charles


    UNAVCO, UCAR, and Cornell University are working together to leverage semantic web technologies to enable discovery of people, datasets, publications and other research products, as well as the connections between them. The EarthCollab project, a U.S. National Science Foundation EarthCube Building Block, is enhancing an existing open-source semantic web application, VIVO, to enhance connectivity across distributed networks of researchers and resources related to the following two geoscience-based communities: (1) the Bering Sea Project, an interdisciplinary field program whose data archive is hosted by NCAR's Earth Observing Laboratory (EOL), and (2) UNAVCO, a geodetic facility and consortium that supports diverse research projects informed by geodesy. People, publications, datasets and grant information have been mapped to an extended version of the VIVO-ISF ontology and ingested into VIVO's database. Much of the VIVO ontology was built for the life sciences, so we have added some components of existing geoscience-based ontologies and a few terms from a local ontology that we created. The UNAVCO VIVO instance,, utilizes persistent identifiers whenever possible; for example using ORCIDs for people, publication DOIs, data DOIs and unique NSF grant numbers. Data is ingested using a custom set of scripts that include the ability to perform basic automated and curated disambiguation. VIVO can display a page for every object ingested, including connections to other objects in the VIVO database. A dataset page, for example, includes the dataset type, time interval, DOI, related publications, and authors. The dataset type field provides a connection to all other datasets of the same type. The author's page shows, among other information, related datasets and co-authors. Information previously spread across several unconnected databases is now stored in a single location. In addition to VIVO's default display, the new database can be queried using SPARQL

  3. Teaching Geoscience in Place for Local Diversity and Sustainability (United States)

    Semken, S.


    Globalization, careerism, media, thoughtless consumption, standardized education and assessment, and even well-meaning advocacy for far-flung environments and people all divert our attention from meaningful interaction with our own surroundings. Meanwhile, many young Americans prefer virtual realities over personal intimacy with nature. Many have lost sight of the pedagogical power of places: localities imbued with meaning by human experience. To lack a sense of local places is to be oblivious to their environmental, cultural, and aesthetic importance, and to risk acceding to their degradation. The geosciences, born and rooted in exploration of environments, have much to lose from this trend but can be pivotal in helping to reverse it. Place-based teaching is situated in local physical and cultural environments and blends experiential learning, transdisciplinary and multicultural content, and service to the community. It is advocated for its relevance and potential to engage diverse students. Authentically place-based education is informed not only by scientific knowledge of places but also by the humanistic meanings and attachments affixed to them. Leveraging and enriching the senses of place of students, teachers, and the community is a defining and desirable learning outcome. We have researched and piloted several place-based approaches to geoscience teaching at various places in the Southwest USA: at a rural Tribal College, a large urban university, and a teacher in-service program at an underserved, minority-majority rural school district. Curricula are situated in complexly evolved, ruggedly beautiful desert-mountain physical landscapes coincident with multicultural, deeply historic, but rapidly changing cultural landscapes. The organizing theme is a cyclical path of inquiry through Earth and Sky, derived from Indigenous ethnogeology; syllabi integrate geology, hydrology, climate, environmental quality, and cultural geography and are situated in real places

  4. Improving Scientific Writing in Undergraduate Geosciences Degrees Through Peer Review (United States)

    Day, E. A.; Collins, G. S.; Craig, L.


    In the British educational system, students specialise early. Often geoscience undergraduates have not taken a class that requires extended writing since they were sixteen years old. This can make it difficult for students to develop the written skills necessary for a geoscience degree, which often has assessments in the form of essays and reports. To improve both the writing and editing skills of our undergraduates we have introduced a peer review system, in which seniors review the work of first year students. At Imperial College London we set written coursework in every year of the degree. Communication is taught and assessed in many courses. There are two major modules with substantial written components that bookend the undergraduate degree at Imperial; the freshmen all write an assessed essay, while all seniors take 'Science Communication', a course that aims to prepare them for a range of possible careers. In the 2015-16 academic year we linked these courses by introducing a modified form of peer marking and instruction. Seniors had to complete reviews of draft first year essays for credit in Science Communication. These reviews are completed for the department 'journal' and introduce the first and fourth years to the nature of peer review. Seniors learn how to critically, but kindly, evaluate the work of other students, and are also prepared for potentially submitting their senior theses to journals. Reviews were managed by volunteer seniors, who acted as associate editors. They allocated anonymous reviewers and wrote decision letters, which were sent to the freshmen before their final assessed essay submission. Ultimately the fourth year reviews were formally assessed and graded by members of staff, as were the revised and resubmitted first year essays. Feedback for both courses has improved since the introduction of student reviews of essays. The markers of the freshman essay have also commented on the improvement in the standard of the writing and a

  5. Nonlinear features of equatorial baroclinic Rossby waves detected in Topex altimeter observations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. E. Glazman


    Full Text Available Using a recently proposed technique for statistical analysis of non-gridded satellite altimeter data, regime of long equatorially-trapped baroclinic Rossby waves is studied. One-dimensional spatial and spatiotemporal autocorrelation functions of sea surface height (SSH variations yield a broad spectrum of baroclinic Rossby waves and permit determination of their propagation speed. The 1-d wavenumber spectrum of zonal variations is given by a power-law k-2 on scales from about 103 km to 104 km. We demonstrate that the observed wave regime exhibits features of soliton turbulence developing in the long baroclinic Rossby waves. However, being limited to second statistical moments, the present analysis does not allow us to rule out a possibility of weak wave turbulence.

  6. A note on radar altimeter signatures of internal solitary waves in the ocean (United States)

    da Silva, J. C. B.; Cerqueira, A. L. F.


    It is well known that Internal Waves of tidal frequency (i.e. Internal Tides) are successfully detected in seasurface height (SSH) by satellite altimetry [1]. Shorter period Internal Solitary Waves (ISWs), whose periods are an order of magnitude smaller than tidal internal waves, are however generally assumed too small to be detected with standard altimeters (at low sampling rates, i.e. 1 Hz). This is because the Radar Altimeter (RA) footprint is somewhat larger, or of similar size at best, than the ISWs typical wavelengths. Here it will be demonstrated that new generation high sampling rate satellite altimetry data (i.e. 20 Hz) hold a variety of short-period signatures that are consistent with surface manifestations of ISWs in the ocean. Our observational method is based on satellite synergy with imaging sensors such as Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) and other high-resolution optical sensors (e.g. 250m resolution MODIS images) with which ISWs are unambiguously recognized. A first order commonly accepted ISW radar imaging mechanism is based on hydrodynamic modulation models [2] [3] in which the straining of surface waves due to ISW orbital currents is known to cause modulation of decimeter-scale surface waves, which have group velocities close to the IW phase velocity. This effect can be readily demonstrated by measurements of wind wave slope variances associated with short-period ISWs, as accomplished in the pioneer work of Hughes and Grant [4]. Mean square slope can be estimated from nadir looking RAs using a geometric optics (specular) scattering model [5][6][7], and directly obtained from normalized backscatter (sigma0) along-track records. We use differential scattering from the dual-band (Ku- and C-bands) microwave pulses of the Jason- 2 high-rate RA to isolate the contribution of small-scale surface waves to mean square slope. The differenced altimeter mean square slope estimate, derived for the nominal wave number range 40-100 rad/m, is then used to detect

  7. Waveform Retracking and Emulation Experiment Analysis of Synthetic Aperture Radar Altimeter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ZHAI Zhenhe


    Full Text Available Based on the synthetic aperture radar(SAR convolution model, the convolution computation formula about the derivative of three parameters of time migration, rise time and amplitude are deduced. The SAR waveform retracking is completed using numerical integration and Fourier transform. Besides, the echo waveform under SAR model is generated using the simulation orbit, troposphere, ionosphere and tide model. The comparison shows that the shape of echo waveform under SAR model is the same as that of CryoSat-2 1 Hz SAR. The experiments show that the accuracy of SAR altimeter retracking is about 5 cm under the 20 Hz data(about 350 m resolution, which are improved compared with that of the traditional model.

  8. Variations in transport derived from satellite altimeter data over the Gulf Stream (United States)

    Molinelli, E.; Lambert, R. B.


    Variations in total change of sea surface height (delta h) across the Gulf Stream are observed using Seasat radar altimeter data. The sea surface height is related to transport within the stream by a two layer model. Variations in delta h are compared with previously observed changes in transport found to increase with distance downstream. No such increase is apparent since the satellite transports show no significant dependence on distance. Though most discrepancies are less than 50 percent, a few cases differ by about 100 percent and more. Several possible reasons for these discrepancies are advanced, including geoid error, but only two oceanographic contributions to the variability are examined, namely, limitations in the two layer model and meanders in the current. It is concluded that some of the discrepancies could be explained as changes in the density structure not accounted for by the two layer model.

  9. Large-scale Gulf Stream frontal study using GEOS 3 radar altimeter data (United States)

    Huang, N. E.; Leitao, C. D.; Parra, C. G.


    From data obtained by the GEOS 3 radar altimeter, sea surface heights are found by both editing and filtering the raw sea surface height measurements and then referencing these processed data to a 5 foot by 5 foot geoid. Any trend between the processed data and the geoid is removed by subtracting out a linear fit to the residuals in the open ocean. Data from individual passes are further processed by applying a minimum variance technique at the subsatellite crossing points to produce surface topography maps for the 6 months and an overall mean map which reveal important details about the Gulf Stream system. The differences between the monthly mean and the overall mean are calculated for each of the 6 months to show the temporal and spatial changes of the Gulf Stream front and spawned eddies. The standard deviation map is even more informative and shows preferred locations of Gulf Stream meanders.

  10. Seasat altimeter observations of dynamic topography in the Gulf Stream region (United States)

    Cheney, R. E.; Marsh, J. G.


    A straightforward approach to altimeter data analysis in the Gulf Stream system is presented, using a detailed geoid model to remove the gravitational component. The resulting sea surface height profiles compare remarkably well with independent oceanographic observations. Specific features such as cold rings, warm rings, and no anomaly regions are analyzed and it is shown that known positions of cyclonic and anticyclonic rings correspond with depressions and elevations, respectively, with amplitudes as large as 95 cm. The apparent fluctuation of the Gulf Stream is indicated by the results, as in the finding that on time scales of a few days, surface transport indicated by the sea surface height difference across the stream varied by nearly 30%

  11. Subsurface circulation and mesoscale variability in the Algerian subbasin from altimeter-derived eddy trajectories (United States)

    Escudier, Romain; Mourre, Baptiste; Juza, Mélanie; Tintoré, Joaquín.


    Algerian eddies are the strongest and largest propagating mesoscale structures in the Western Mediterranean Sea. They have a large influence on the mean circulation, water masses and biological processes. Over 20 years of satellite altimeter data have been analyzed to characterize the propagation of these eddies using automatic detection methods and cross-correlation analysis. We found that, on average, Algerian eddy trajectories form two subbasin scale anticlockwise gyres that coincide with the two Algerian gyres which were described in the literature as the barotropic circulation in the area. This result suggests that altimetry sea surface observations can provide information on subsurface currents and their variability through the study of the propagation of deep mesoscale eddies in semienclosed seas. The analysis of eddy sea level anomalies along the mean pathways reveals three preferred areas of formation. Eddies are usually formed at a specific time of the year in these areas, with a strong interannual variability over the last 20 years.

  12. The Geoscience Ambassador: Training opportunities and skill development for tomorrow's geoscientists (United States)

    Price, Louise


    How can high schools geoscience teachers engage younger students who are not taught geoscience subjects at lower key stages? As passionate practitioners of learning, high school teachers are in a seemingly ideal position to inspire young learners to study and pursue a career in the field of geoscience. However, recruitment of students is often challenging if students do not have the opportunity to study the subjects first. For geoscience subjects such as geology to remain sustainable and viable at A-level, it is imperative that high schools invest time and effort in improving student awareness of subjects which students can access later in their academic career. Perhaps one of the greatest, most accessible and overlooked promotional tools for a geoscience subject are the students themselves. In 2016/2017, a new scheme at Hessle High School and Sixth Form in Yorkshire, United Kingdom, offered senior A-level geology students the opportunity to become "Geoscience Ambassadors". These students were recruited to act as champions for their geoscience subject (geology) to support with inspiring and engaging younger students who may otherwise not choose the subject. The traditional method of disseminating learning is to offer "train the trainer" sessions where training is delivered to peers for onward cascaded teaching and education. On returning from the 2016 Geosciences Information for Teachers (GIFT) workshop at EGU, training was provided to other teaching professionals on the activities and key learning points, the training was also disseminated to an enthusiastic group of A-level students to enable them to become Geoscience Ambassadors. This cascade approach moves away from the tradition of training high school staff alone on new pedagogies but additionally trains young and enthusiastic 17 year olds to work with groups of younger students in the local and regional area. Students use their newly discovered knowledge and skills to inspire younger students with their

  13. Impacting earthquake science and geoscience education: Educational programming to earthquake relocation (United States)

    Carrick, Tina Louise

    This dissertation is comprised of four studies: three related to research on geoscience education and another seismological study of the South Island of New Zealand. The geoscience education research is grounded in 10 years of data collection and its implications for best practices for recruitment and retention of underrepresented minority students into higher education in the geosciences. The seismological component contains results from the relocation of earthquakes from the 2009 Dusky Sound Mw 7.8 event, South Island, New Zealand. In recent years, many have cited a major concern that U.S. is not producing enough STEM graduates to fit the forecasted economic need. This situation is exacerbated by the fact that underrepresented minorities are becoming a growing portion of the population, and people in these groups enter STEM careers at rates much smaller than their proportion of the populations. Among the STEM disciplines the Geosciences are the worst at attracting young people from underrepresented minorities. This dissertation reports on results the Pathways program at the University of Texas at El Paso Pathways which sought to create a geoscience recruitment and training network in El Paso, Texas to increase the number of Hispanic Americans students to attain higher degrees and increase the awareness of the geosciences from 2002-2012. Two elements of the program were a summer program for high school students and an undergraduate research program conducted during the academic year, called PREP. Data collected from pre- and post-surveys from the summer program showed statistically significant positive changes in attitudes towards the geosciences. Longitudinal data shows a strong positive correlation of the program with retention of participants in the geoscience pipeline. Results from the undergraduate research program show that it produced far more women and minority geoscience professionals than national norms. Combination of the institutional data, focus

  14. A next generation altimeter for mapping the sea surface height variability: opportunities and challenges (United States)

    Fu, Lee-Lueng; Morrow, Rosemary


    The global observations of the sea surface height (SSH) have revolutionized oceanography since the beginning of precision radar altimetry in the early 1990s. For the first time we have continuous records of SSH with spatial and temporal sampling for detecting the global mean sea level rise, the waxing and waning of El Niño, and the ocean circulation from gyres to ocean eddies. The limit of spatial resolution of the present constellation of radar altimeters in mapping SSH variability is approaching 100 km (in wavelength) with 3 or more simultaneous altimetric satellites in orbit. At scales shorter than 100 km, the circulation contains substantial amount of kinetic energy in currents, eddies and fronts that are responsible for the stirring and mixing of the ocean, especially from the vertical exchange of the upper ocean with the deep. A mission currently in development will use the technique of radar interferometry for making high-resolution measurement of the height of water over the ocean as well as on land. It is called Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT), which is a joint mission of US NASA and French CNES, with contributions from Canada and UK. SWOT promises the detection of SSH at scales approaching 15 km, depending on the sea state. SWOT will make SSH measurement over a swath of 120 km with a nadir gap of 20 km in a 21-day repeat orbit. A conventional radar altimeter will provide measurement along the nadir. This is an exploratory mission with applications in oceanography and hydrology. The increased spatial resolution offers an opportunity to study ocean surface processes to address important questions about the ocean circulation. However, the limited temporal sampling poses challenges to map the evolution of the ocean variability that changes rapidly at the small scales. The measurement technique and the development of the mission will be presented with emphasis on its science program with outlook on the opportunities and challenges.

  15. Assimilation of Satellite Altimeter Data With a Four Dimensional Model of the Japan Sea (United States)

    Hirose, Naoki; Ichiro, Fukumori; Jong-Hwan, Yoon


    A data assimilation is carried out to detect the variability of the Japan Sea circulation in the range from a few days to several years and from eddy to basin scale. The model applied in this study is the same 1/6 degree GFDL MOM1 as Kim and Yoon (1999) but is driven by ECMWF daily wind stress, heat and fresh water fluxes. The satellite altimeter data of TOPEX/POSEIDON, ERS-1 (phase C and G) and -2 are assimilated by an approximate Kalman filter (Fukumori and M.Rizzoli, 1995). The approximation is made by seeking an asymptotic steady error covariance matrix (Fukumori et al., 1993) and by introducing a coarser grid model for the innovation (data-model misfit). The coarse grid model is defined on 1/2 degree horizontal resolution and consists of the barotropic stream function, first baroclinic displacement and velocity amplitudes. The assimilated estimates explain about 6cm sea level variability of the data (approximately 12cm in the southern part), which is much larger than the previous reduced-gravity model and TOPEX/POSEIDON altimeter data assimilation (Hirose et al., 1999). The impacts of the T/P and ERS data on the filtered estimates are comparable. The result also shows high correlation to subsurface water temperatures measured by CTD. Many of the mesoscale eddies/disturbances travel east-northeastward with the advection speed of 1-3cm/s though most of them generated in the western region can not pass over the Oki Spur. The quasi-biennial variability found by Hirose and Ostrovskii (1999) did not show clear propagation pattern. The shallow Oki Spur may work as a "western boundary" to this signal. This is more plausible estimation than by the R-G model which has no bottom topography.

  16. Merging altimeter data with Argo profiles to improve observation of tropical Pacific thermocline circulation and ENSO (United States)

    Zhang, D.; Lee, T.; Wang, F.; McPhaden, M. J.; Kessler, W. S.


    Meridional thermocline currents play an important role in the recharge and discharge of tropical Pacific warm water during the development and transition of ENSO cycles. Previous analyses have shown large variations of the equatorward meridional thermocline convergence/divergence on ENSO and decadal time scales in the interior ocean. The total convergence/divergence is however unknown due to the lack of long term observation in the western boundary currents. Numerical modelling studies suggested a tendency of compensation between the interior and western boundary currents, but the exact compensation is model dependent. While Argo floats provide reasonable data coverage in the interior ocean, few floats are in the western boundary currents. Recent multi-mission satellite altimeter data and advanced processing techniques have resulted in higher resolution sea surface height anomaly (SSHA) products with better accuracy closer to the coasts. This study utilizes the statistical relationship between Argo dynamic height profiles and altimeter SSHA to calculate geostrophic thermocline currents in both the interior ocean and the western boundary of the tropical Pacific. The derived thermocline currents in the western boundary are validated by a 3.5-year moored Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (ADCP) measurement in the Mindanao Current and by a series of glider surveys (Davis et al. 2012) in the Solomon Sea. The meridional transport timeseries of the interior and western boundary currents in the thermocline show different lead-lag relationships to the Nino 3.4 index. Results will be discussed in the context of recent 2014-2015 El Nino development and the potential contribution to the Tropical Pacific Observing System (TPOS).

  17. Compact, Passively Q-Switched Nd:YAG Laser for the MESSENGER Mission to the Planet Mercury (United States)

    Krebs, Danny J.; Novo-Gradac, Anne-Marie; Li, Steven X.; Lindauer, Steven J.; Afzal, Robert S.; Yu, Antony


    A compact, passively Q-switched Nd:YAG laser has been developed for the Mercury Laser Altimeter (MLA) instrument which is an instrument on the MESSENGER mission to the planet Mercury. The laser achieves 5.4 percent efficiency with a near diffraction limited beam. It has passed all space flight environmental tests at system, instrument, and satellite integration. The laser design draws on a heritage of previous laser altimetry missions, specifically ISESAT and Mars Global Surveyor; but incorporates thermal management features unique to the requirements of an orbit of the planet Mercury.

  18. Monthly Maps of Sea Surface Height in the North Atlantic and Zonal Indices for the Gulf Stream Using TOPEX/Poseidon Altimeter Data (United States)

    Singh, Sandipa; Kelly, Kathryn A.


    Monthly Maps of sea surface height are constructed for the North Atlantic Ocean using TOPEX/Poseidon altimeter data. Mean sea surface height is reconstructed using a weighted combination of historical, hydrographic data and a synthetic mean obtained by fitting a Gaussian model of the Gulf Stream jet to altimeter data. The resultant mean shows increased resolution over the hydrographic mean, and incorporates recirculation information that is absent in the synthetic mean. Monthly maps, obtained by adding the mean field to altimeter sea surface height residuals, are used to derive a set of zonal indices that describe the annual cycle of meandering as well as position and strength of the Gulf Stream.

  19. 3D visualization for research and teaching in geosciences (United States)

    Manea, Marina; Constantin Manea, Vlad


    Today, we are provided with an abundance of visual images from a variety of sources. In doing research, data visualization represents an important part, and sophisticated models require special tools that should enhance the comprehension of modeling results. Also, helping our students gain visualization skills is an important way to foster greater comprehension when studying geosciences. For these reasons we build a 3D stereo-visualization system, or a GeoWall, that permits to explore in depth 3D modeling results and provide for students an attractive way for data visualization. In this study, we present the architecture of such low cost system, and how is used. The system consists of three main parts: a DLP-3D capable display, a high performance workstation and several pairs of wireless liquid crystal shutter eyewear. The system is capable of 3D stereo visualization of Google Earth and/or 3D numeric modeling results. Also, any 2D image or movie can be instantly viewed in 3D stereo. Such flexible-easy-to-use visualization system proved to be an essential research and teaching tool.

  20. Does Question Structure Affect Exam Performance in the Geosciences? (United States)

    Day, E. A.; D'Arcy, M. K.; Craig, L.; Streule, M. J.; Passmore, E.; Irving, J. C. E.


    The jump to university level exams can be challenging for some students, often resulting in poor marks, which may be detrimental to their confidence and ultimately affect their overall degree class. Previous studies have found that question structure can have a strong impact on the performance of students in college level exams (see Gibson et al., 2015, for a discussion of its impact on physics undergraduates). Here, we investigate the effect of question structure on the exam results of geology and geophysics undergraduate students. Specifically, we analyse the performance of students in questions that have a 'scaffolded' framework and compare them to their performance in open-ended questions and coursework. We also investigate if observed differences in exam performance are correlated with the educational background and gender of students, amongst other factors. It is important for all students to be able to access their degree courses, no matter what their backgrounds may be. Broadening participation in the geosciences relies on removing systematic barriers to achievement. Therefore we recommend that exams are either structured with scaffolding in questions at lower levels, or students are explicitly prepared for this transition. We also recommend that longitudinal studies of exam performance are conducted within individual departments, and this work outlines one approach to analysing performance data.

  1. Professional Development Opportunities for Two-Year College Geoscience Faculty: Issues, Opportunities, and Successes (United States)

    Baer, E. M.; Macdonald, H.; McDaris, J. R.; Granshaw, F. D.; Wenner, J. M.; Hodder, J.; van der Hoeven Kraft, K.; Filson, R. H.; Guertin, L. A.; Wiese, K.


    Two-year colleges (2YCs) play a critical role in geoscience education in the United States. Nearly half of the undergraduate students who take introductory geoscience do so at a 2YC. With awide reach and diverse student populations, 2YCs may be key to producing a well-trained, diverse and sufficiently large geoscience workforce. However, faculty at 2YCs often face many barriers to professional development including lack of financial resources, heavy and inflexible teaching loads, lack of awareness of opportunities, and few professional development resources/events targeted at their needs. As an example, at the 2009 GSA meeting in Portland, fewer than 80 of the 6500 attendees were from community colleges, although this was more than twice the 2YC faculty attendance the previous year. Other issues include the isolation described by many 2YC geoscience faculty who may be the only full time geoscientist on a campus and challenges faced by adjunct faculty who may have even fewer opportunities for professional development and networking with other geoscience faculty. Over the past three years we have convened several workshops and events for 2YC geoscience faculty including technical sessions and a workshop on funding opportunities for 2YC faculty at GSA annual meetings, a field trip and networking event at the fall AGU meeting, a planning workshop that examined the role of 2YCs in geoscience education and in broadening participation in the geosciences, two workshops supporting use of the 'Math You Need, When You Need It' educational materials that included a majority of 2YC faculty, and marine science summer institutes offered by COSEE-Pacific Partnerships for 2YC faculty. Our experience indicates that 2YC faculty desire professional development opportunities when the experience is tailored to the needs and character of their students, programs, and institutions. The content of the professional development opportunity must be useful to 2YC faculty -workshops and

  2. Role Models and Mentors in Mid-Pipeline Retention of Geoscience Students, Newark, NJ (United States)

    Gates, A. E.; Kalczynski, M. J.


    Undergraduate minority students retained enthusiasm for majoring in the geosciences by a combination of working with advanced minority mentors and role models as well as serving as role models for middle and high school students in Geoscience Education programs in Newark, NJ. An academic year program to interest 8-10th grade students from the Newark Public schools in the Geosciences employs minority undergraduate students from Rutgers University and Essex Community College as assistants. There is an academic year program (Geoexplorers) and a science festival (Dinosaur Day) at the Newark Museum that employs Rutgers University students and a summer program that employs Rutgers and Essex Community College students. All students are members of the Garden State LSAMP and receive any needed academic support from that program. The students receive mentoring from minority graduate students, project personnel and participating Newark Public School teachers, many of whom are from minority groups. The main factor in success and retention, however, is their role as authorities and role models for the K-12 students. The assistants are respected and consulted by the K-12 students for their knowledge and authority in the geosciences. This positive feedback shows them that they can be regarded as geoscientists and reinforces their self-image and enthusiasm. It further reinforces their knowledge of Geoscience concepts. It also binds the assistants together into a self-supporting community that even extends to the non-participating minority students in the Rutgers program. Although the drop-out rate among minority Geoscience majors was high (up to 100%) prior to the initiation of the program, it has dropped to 0% over the past 3 years with 2 participants now in PhD programs and 2 others completing MS degrees this year. Current students are seriously considering graduate education. Prior to this program, only one minority graduate from the program continued to graduate school in the

  3. Attracting Urban Minority Students to Geosciences through Exposure to Careers and Applied Aspects in Newark, NJ (United States)

    Gates, A. E.; Kalczynski, M. J.


    A solid pipeline of URM students into the Geosciences has been established in Newark, NJ by introducing them to applied opportunities. Prior to an OEDG program designed to engage URM students, there were no students from or near Newark interested in pursuing geosciences at Rutgers-Newark or Essex Community College, the two local urban campuses. By infusing activities that showed the applied aspects of geoscience and opportunities for careers into regular high school lesson plans, a significant number of students became interested. These students were recruited into a 4-week modular summer institute that focused on energy, mining resources, environment and surface processes. About 90 students per year attended the institute which included 2 local field trips per week, presentations by industry professionals, activities that placed academic subjects into career perspective and a research project that directly affected the well-being of the students and their families. The most interested dozen of the 90 students were invited to participate in a high profile applied project that received significant media coverage, further enhancing their impression of the importance of geosciences. Previous graduates of the program were employed as assistants in subsequent programs to recycle the experience and enthusiasm. This had a positive effect on the persistence of the assistants who viewed themselves as role models to the younger students. The results are burgeoning numbers of URM geoscience majors at Rutgers, offering of geoscience for the first time in 30 years at Essex Community College as well as a new 2+2 geoscience track and several dual-credit courses at local high schools. An important aspect of this pathway or pipeline is that students must be able to clearly see the next step and their role in it. They are very tentative in this essentially pioneering pursuit. If they don't get a sense of a welcoming community and an ultimate career outcome, they quickly lose

  4. An Integrative and Collaborative Approach to Creating a Diverse and Computationally Competent Geoscience Workforce (United States)

    Moore, S. L.; Kar, A.; Gomez, R.


    A partnership between Fort Valley State University (FVSU), the Jackson School of Geosciences at The University of Texas (UT) at Austin, and the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) is engaging computational geoscience faculty and researchers with academically talented underrepresented minority (URM) students, training them to solve grand challenges . These next generation computational geoscientists are being trained to solve some of the world's most challenging geoscience grand challenges requiring data intensive large scale modeling and simulation on high performance computers . UT Austin's geoscience outreach program GeoFORCE, recently awarded the Presidential Award in Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring, contributes to the collaborative best practices in engaging researchers with URM students. Collaborative efforts over the past decade are providing data demonstrating that integrative pipeline programs with mentoring and paid internship opportunities, multi-year scholarships, computational training, and communication skills development are having an impact on URMs developing middle skills for geoscience careers. Since 1997, the Cooperative Developmental Energy Program at FVSU and its collaborating universities have graduated 87 engineers, 33 geoscientists, and eight health physicists. Recruited as early as high school, students enroll for three years at FVSU majoring in mathematics, chemistry or biology, and then transfer to UT Austin or other partner institutions to complete a second STEM degree, including geosciences. A partnership with the Integrative Computational Education and Research Traineeship (ICERT), a National Science Foundation (NSF) Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Site at TACC provides students with a 10-week summer research experience at UT Austin. Mentored by TACC researchers, students with no previous background in computational science learn to use some of the world's most powerful high performance

  5. Internships and UNAVCO: Training the Future Geoscience Workforce Through the NSF GAGE Facility (United States)

    Morris, A. R.; MacPherson-Krutsky, C. C.; Charlevoix, D. J.; Bartel, B. A.


    Facilities are uniquely positioned to both serve a broad, national audience and provide unique workforce experience to students and recent graduates. Intentional efforts dedicated to broadening participation in the future geoscience workforce at the NSF GAGE (Geodesy Advancing Geosciences and EarthScope) Facility operated by UNAVCO, are designed to meet the needs of the next generation of students and professionals. As a university-governed consortium facilitating research and education in the geosciences, UNAVCO is well-situated to both prepare students for geoscience technical careers and advanced research positions. Since 1998, UNAVCO has offered over 165 student assistant or intern positions including engineering, data services, education and outreach, and business support. UNAVCO offers three formal programs: the UNAVCO Student Internship Program (USIP), Research Experiences in Solid Earth Science for Students (RESESS), and the Geo-Launchpad (GLP) internship program. Interns range from community college students up through graduate students and recent Masters graduates. USIP interns gain real-world work experience in a professional setting, collaborate with teams toward a common mission, and contribute their knowledge, skills, and abilities to the UNAVCO community. RESESS interns conduct authentic research with a scientist in the Front Range area as well as participate in a structured professional development series. GLP students are in their first 2 years of higher education and work alongside UNAVCO technical staff gaining valuable work experience and insight into the logistics of supporting scientific research. UNAVCO's efforts in preparing the next generation of scientists largely focuses on increasing diversity in the geosciences, whether continuing academic studies or moving into the workforce. To date, well over half of our interns and student assistants come from backgrounds historically underrepresented in the geosciences. Over 80% of former interns

  6. NSF-Sponsored Summit on the Future of Undergraduate Geoscience Education: outcomes (United States)

    Mosher, S.


    The NSF-sponsored Summit on the Future of Undergraduate Geoscience Education made major progress toward developing a collective community vision for the geosciences. A broad spectrum of the geoscience education community, ~200 educators from research universities/four and two year colleges, focused on preparation of undergraduates for graduate school and future geoscience careers, pedagogy, use of technology, broadening participation/retention of underrepresented groups, and preparation of K-12 science teachers. Participants agreed that key concepts, competencies and skills learned throughout the curriculum were more important than specific courses. Concepts included understanding Earth as complex, dynamic system, deep time, evolution of life, natural resources, energy, hazards, hydrogeology, surface processes, Earth materials and structure, and climate change. Skills/competencies included ability to think spatially and temporally, reason inductively and deductively, make and use indirect observations, engage in complex open, coupled systems thinking, and work with uncertainty, non-uniqueness, and incompleteness, as well as critical thinking, problem solving, communication, and ability to think like a scientist and continue to learn. Successful ways of developing these include collaborative, integrative projects involving teams, interdisciplinary projects, fieldwork and research experiences, as well as flipped classrooms and integration and interactive use of technology, including visualization, simulation, modeling and analysis of real data. Wider adoption of proven, effective best practices is our communities' main pedagogical challenge, and we focused on identifying implementation barriers. Preparation of future teachers in introductory and general geoscience courses by incorporating Next Generation Science Standards and using other sciences/math to solve real world geoscience problems should help increase diversity and number of future geoscientists and

  7. Earth Science Pipeline: Enhancing Diversity in the Geosciences (United States)

    McGill, S.; Smith, A.; Fryxell, J.; Leatham, W.; Brunkhorst, B. J.


    Our initial efforts to recruit and retain students from under-represented ethnic groups were guided by results from a survey of students in our introductory geology courses. Among students from under-represented ethnic groups, the most common reasons for NOT majoring in geology were (1) lack of exposure to geosciences, (2) lack of knowledge about careers in geology, (3) a student's perception that he or she is not a "science-type" of person, (4) the difficulty of science, (5) the fact that the student had no friends or family members that had majored in geology, (6) the lack of role models from their ethnicity in geology, (7) boredom with science. The first reasons listed above were rated as "very important" to the greatest number of students [45%], and the following reasons were considered "very important" to decreasing numbers of students [down to 20%]. Issues related to prestige, religion and gender role models were considered "very important" to schools. We have presented in science classes, to students in Project UPBEAT, as well as to students in the Advancement Via Independent Determination (AVID) program at local high schools. We also participated in the Earth Science portion of a Science Olympiad for high-achieving middle and high school students, offered consulting for science fair projects and led students on field trips to the San Andreas fault and Pisgah Crater. We hired CSUSB students from both our introductory and upper-division geology courses to help with these outreach activities. Several of these students were from under-represented ethnic groups, and they thus served as role models for the pre-college students from those ethnic groups. These outreach assistants have also continued taking geology courses, and some have become geology majors or minors. A total of 44 presentations/field trips/other activities with students were conducted during 2001-02, resulting in over 4300 contact hours with more than 2300 pre-college students. The majority (66

  8. Role Models for boosting mobility of women scientists in geosciences (United States)

    Avellis, Giovanna; Theodoridou, Magdalini


    More and more women today are choosing to study science and undertake scientific careers. Likewise mobility during one's career is increasingly important as research tends to be undertaken via international collaboration, often within networks based on the researchers mobility, especially in geosciences. We have developed an ebook on Role Models for boosting mobility of women scientists to showcase the careers of women scientists who have undertaken mobility during their careers. It is hoped that their stories will provide young women who are just starting out in their science careers with inspirational role models, and that these stories give them realistic information about career opportunities: many of them are women scientists in geosciences. These are not famous scientists, but rather real examples of people who express all the passion of the world of science. It is hoped that reading about successful scientists who have achieved a healthy work-life balance while moving to new locations will be particularly helpful for those individuals considering mobility in their own career. The ebook is available to be used by programs that support the development of systematic approaches to increasing the representation and advancement of women in science, engineering and technology, since mobility plays a key role in these programs. The stories contained herein will be useful to mentoring or advising program focusing on career, networking opportunities, discussion and grants opportunities in conjunction with mobility. There is still a gap between female graduates and the pool of female job applicants - even though the proportion of female graduate students and postdocs in most scientific fields is higher today than it is ever been. Therefore we suggest that focus should be placed on examining the real challenges which women need to overcome, particularly when "mobility" comes into play. Role models who have overcome these challenges will continue to play an important

  9. Sonification for geoscience: Exploring faults from the inside (United States)

    Mair, K.; Barrett, N.


    Sonification is the use of non-speech audio to convey information or display data. It can involve techniques such as the direct transposition of a signal into the audible range, or the mapping of specific sounds to a signal or event. Since our ears are very sensitive to unusual sonic events or sound patterns, sonification provides a potentially powerful way to perceptualize (or hear) our data. The addition of 3D audio to the sonification tool palate allows us to more accurately connect to spatial data in a novel, engaging and highly accessible approach. Here we investigate the use of sonification for geoscience by sonifying the data generated in computer models of earthquake processes. We present results from our recent 3D DEM (discrete element method) models where granular debris is sheared between rough walls to simulate an evolving fault. To best appreciate the inherently 3D nature of the crushing and sliding events (continuously tracked in our models) that occur as faults slip, we use Ambiosonics (a sound field recreation technology). This allows the position of individual events to be preserved generating a virtual 3D soundscape so we can explore faults - from the inside! During sonification, events such as grain scale fracturing, grain motions and interactions are mapped to specific sounds whose pitch, timbre, and volume reflect properties such as the depth, character, size of the individual events. Active listeners can explore the 3D soundscape and listen to evolving processes in the data by physically moving through the space or navigating via a 3D mouse controller. The soundscape can be heard either through an array of 16 speakers or using a pair of headphones. Emergent phenomena in the models generate sound patterns that are easily spotted by experts and youngsters alike. Also, because our ears are excellent signal-to-noise filters, events are easily recognizable above the background noise. From a learning perspective, the exploration process required to

  10. Global Geoscience Initiatives From Windows to the Universe (United States)

    Russell, R. M.; Johnson, R.; Gardiner, L.; Lagrave, M.; Genyuk, J.; Bergman, J.; Foster, S. Q.


    The Windows to the Universe ( Earth and space science educational program and web site has an extensive international presence. The web site reaches a vast user audience, having served more than 124 million page views across approximately 14 million user sessions in the past year. About 44% of these user sessions originated from domains outside of the United States. The site, which contains roughly 7,000 pages originally offered in English, is being translated into Spanish. This effort, begun in 2003, is now approximately 80% complete. Availability in a second major language has dramatically increased use of the site both in the U.S.A. and abroad; about 29% (4.1 million) of the annual user sessions visit Spanish-language portions of the site. In September 2005 we began distributing a monthly electronic newsletter for teachers that highlights features on the web site as well as other geoscience programs and events of relevance to educators. We currently have more than 4,400 subscribers, 33.6% of whom are outside of the United States. We are actively seeking news and information about other programs of relevance to this audience to distribute via our newsletter. We have also begun to solicit information (tips, anecdotes, lesson plans, etc.) from geoscience teachers around the world to share via this newsletter. Finally, Windows to the Universe participated in the Education and Outreach efforts of the MILAGRO scientific field campaign in Mexico in March of 2006. MILAGRO was a collaborative, multi-agency, international campaign to conduct a coordinated study of the extent and effects of pollutants emitted by a "mega-city" (in this case Mexico City) in order to understand the impacts of vast urban environments on global climate modeling. We enlisted several scientists involved with MILAGRO to write "Postcards from the Field" about their ongoing research during the project; these electronic "postcards" were distributed, in English and Spanish, via

  11. Emerging Geoscience Education Research at the University of British Columbia (United States)

    Jones, F. M.; Harris, S.; Wieman, C.; Gilley, B.; Lane, E.; Caulkins, J.


    Geoscience education research (GER) in UBC’s Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences (EOS) began due to a well funded 5-yr Faculty of Science project called the Carl Wieman Science Education Initiative (CWSEI). This initiative takes an evidence-based, scientific approach to improving education by 1) establishing what students should learn; 2) scientifically measuring what students are learning; 3) adapting instruction and curricula using effective technologies and pedagogical research; and 4) disseminating and adopting what works. The presentation will discuss how this initiative has fostered a growing GER presence within our Department. CWSEI funding has enabled the EOS Department to hire 4 full-time Science Teaching and Learning Fellows (STLFs) who work directly with faculty to optimize courses and curricula. Much of the effort goes into developing active learning opportunities and rigorous ways to measure student learning and attitudes. Results serve as feedback for both students and instructors. Over 10 research projects have so far been initiated as a result of course and curriculum transformation. Examples include studies about: student attitudes towards Earth and Ocean Sciences; the effects of multiple instructors in courses; links between student in-class engagement and pedagogy; how certain instructional interventions promote metacognition; and others. Also, many modified courses use pre- and post-testing to measure learning gains. One undergraduate honors thesis, about assessing conceptual understanding of geological time, has been completed. Keys to fostering GER in our setting include: (1) faculty commitment to change, based on funding from CWSEI, (2) full-time Earth scientists (STLFs) who catalyze and support change, and (3) support from CWSEI science education experts. Specifically: - STLFs are trained Earth scientists but were not initially science education experts. Continuous support from CWSEI has been crucial for building expertise about how

  12. Geoscience Education and Cognition Research at George Mason University (United States)

    Mattietti, G. K.; Peters, E. E.; Verardo, S.


    Cognition research in Geoscience is the focus of a small group of faculty from the College of Science and the College of Education and Human Development at George Mason University. We approached this research when we were involved in an Institution-wide effort to assess critical thinking, one of the competencies mandated for evaluation by the State Council of Higher Education of Virginia. Our group started spontaneously and informally from personal interests and enthusiasm for what and how our students are learning about Geology and in general about science. We want to understand what our students bring to the course, their attitude towards science, their knowledge of the scientific enterprise and preconceived ideas—and what our students take away from the course, beyond the course content. We believe that, with the support of cognitive science, we can improve the learning experience and therefore enhance the learning outcomes for science and non-science majors alike. Our Institution offers introductory Physical and Historical Geology classes populated primarily by non-science-major undergraduates. Geology lectures range in size from 90 to over 220 students per session per semester, with laboratory sessions averaging 27 students per session. With this large student population, it is necessary to use research tools that give us valuable information about student cognition, while being efficient in terms of time use and logistics. Some examples of our work include critical readings on Geoscience topics, surveys on students’ understanding of science as a way of knowing, exercises with built-in self-efficacy assessments, and concept mapping. The common denominator among these tools is that they are calibrated to address one or more of the higher levels in the revised Bloom’s Taxonomy of the Cognitive Domain, which form a complex assessment of student learning processes. These tools, once refined, can provide us with a better view of how our students learn in

  13. Undergraduate Geoscience Education in the United States: Helping Faculty to Meet Changing Expectations (United States)

    Manduca, C.; Mogk, D.


    In the past two decades, undergraduate geoscience education in the United States has undergone substantial changes in its goals, methods, and content, reflecting changes in our societal needs, major improvements in our understanding of how students learn, and the advent of a systems approach to understanding the Earth. Looking in an integrated fashion at US undergraduate education across the spectrum of institutional settings shows that in aggregate, our goals have broadened from a focus primarily on training future scientists to include major efforts to improve preparation for future teachers and to strengthen the understanding of science and geoscience in the broader student population. Supporting a more diverse population of students and increasing the diversity of the geoscience workforce are also priorities. Recommendations for strengthening undergraduate geoscience education to meet these changing circumstances were put forward in Shaping the Future of Undergraduate Earth Science Education: An Earth System Approach published by the AGU in 1997 (Ireton, Manduca, and Mogk). The report recommended two major changes: 1) development of an Earth System approach as the backbone of geoscience education to tie instruction in the various disciplines into a cohesive study of the Earth and 2) implementation of effective teaching strategies based on research on learning. Since 1997 major strides have been made in supporting geoscience faculty in making these changes. Building on the work of individuals, three important community-wide efforts have been established. 1) Professional societies have increased their support for educational programs, expanded education sessions and fostered a variety of workshops in conjunction with national and regional meetings. 2) The Digital Library for Earth System Education is being developed to enable sharing of resources and to provide a virtual community center. 3) The On the Cutting Edge faculty professional development program

  14. Information needs and behaviors of geoscience educators: A grounded theory study (United States)

    Aber, Susan Ward


    Geoscience educators use a variety of resources and resource formats in their classroom teaching to facilitate student understanding of concepts and processes that define subject areas considered in the realm of geoscience. In this study of information needs and behaviors of geoscience educators, the researcher found that participants preferred visual media such as personal photographic and digital images, as well as published figures, animations, and cartoons, and that participants bypassed their academic libraries to meet these information needs. In order to investigate the role of information in developing introductory geoscience course and instruction, a grounded theory study was conducted through a qualitative paradigm with an interpretive approach and naturalistic inquiry. The theoretical and methodological framework was constructivism and sense-making. Research questions were posited on the nature of geoscience subject areas and the resources and resource formats used in conveying geoscience topics to science and non-science majors, as well as educators' preferences and concerns with curriculum and instruction. The underlying framework was to investigate the place of the academic library and librarian in the sense-making, constructivist approach of geoscience educators. A purposive sample of seven geoscience educators from four universities located in mid-western United States was identified as exemplary teachers by department chairpersons. A triangulation of data collection methods included semi-structured interviews, document reviews, and classroom observations. Data were analyzed using the constant comparative method, which included coding, categorizing, and interpreting for patterns and relationships. Contextual factors were identified and a simple model resulted showing the role of information in teaching for these participants. While participants developed lectures and demonstrations using intrapersonal knowledge and personal collections, one barrier

  15. InTeGrate: Transforming the Teaching of Geoscience and Sustainability (United States)

    Blockstein, D.; Manduca, C. A.; Bralower, T. J.; Castendyk, D.; Egger, A. E.; Gosselin, D. C.; Iverson, E. A.; Matson, P. A.; MacGregor, J.; Mcconnell, D. A.; Mogk, D. W.; Nevle, R. J.; Oches, E. A.; Steer, D. N.; Wiese, K.


    InTeGrate is an NSF-funded community project to improve geoscience literacy and build a workforce that can apply geoscience principles to address societal issues. Three workshops offered this year by InTeGrate and its partner, On the Cutting Edge, addressed strategies for bringing together geoscience and sustainability within geoscience courses and programs, in interdisciplinary courses and programs, and in courses and programs in other disciplines or schools including arts and humanities, health science, and business. Participants in all workshops described the power of teaching geoscience in the context of sustainability and the utility of this approach in engaging students with geoscience, including student populations not traditionally represented in the sciences. Faculty involved in both courses and programs seek to teach important skills including the ability to think about systems and to make connections between local observations and challenges and global phenomena and issues. Better articulation of these skills, including learning outcomes and assessments, as well as documenting the relationship between these skills and employment opportunities were identified as important areas for further work. To support widespread integration of geoscience and sustainability concepts, these workshops initiated collections describing current teaching activities, courses, and programs. InTeGrate will continue to build these collections in collaboration with On the Cutting Edge and Building Strong Geoscience Departments, and through open contributions by individual faculty and programs. In addition, InTeGrate began developing new teaching modules and courses. Materials for use in introductory geoscience and environmental science/studies courses, distance learning courses, and courses for education majors are being developed and tested by teams of faculty drawn from at least three institutions, including several members from two-year colleges. An assessment team is

  16. Online Experiential Learning: Effective Applications for Geoscience Education (United States)

    Matias, A.; Eriksson, S. C.


    Students today are rarely satisfied with a one-size-fits-all educational experience. The rapid changing landscape of the web and other technologies are breaking down communicationand geographic barries. More students are increasingly turning to the web for quality education that fits into their lives. As a result, higher education institutions are expanding their offerings through online courses. Nonetheless, online learning brings challenges as well as a fresh opportunityfor exploring practices not present in traditional higher education programs, particularly in the sciences. We are in a unique position to empower students to make strategic academic and professional decisions in global terms. Online learning, supportedwith hands-on and minds-on activities, actively engages student with critical thinking skills and higher level learning. This presentation will showcase examples from a series of geoscience and environmental science courses currently offered fully online at SUNY Empire State College (ESC). Taking advantage of the proliferation of tools currently available for online learning management systems, we will explore how we approach course developent to create an interactive learning environment. Students learn through case studies, group projects and understanding real-world issues while learning concepts. Particular focus will be given to an international collaboration with the Tecnologico de Monterrey, Chihuahua Campus. This collaboration took place during the Spring of 2015 with students from the fully-online, lower-level Geology and the Environment course at ESC and the upper-level, face-to-face Mobile Programming course in Mexico. Ultimately, the goal of this presentation is to show faculty members and afministrators the pedagogical principles and approach used with the expectation that it could help support development of online learning opportunities at their institutions.

  17. BCube: A Broker Framework for Next Generation Geoscience (United States)

    Khalsa, S. S.; Pearlman, J.; Nativi, S.


    EarthCube is an NSF initiative that aims to transform the conduct of research through the creation of community-guided cyberinfrastructure enabling the integration information and data across the geosciences. Following an initial phase of concept and community development activities, NSF has made awards for the development of cyberinfrastructure 'building blocks.' In this talk we describe the goals and methods for one of these projects - BCube, for Brokering Building Blocks. BCube addresses the need for effective and efficient multi-disciplinary collaboration and interoperability through the introduction of brokering technologies. Brokers, as information systems middleware, have existed for many years and are found in diverse domains and industries such as financial systems, business-to-business interfaces, medicine and the automotive industry, to name a few. However, the emergence of brokers in science is relatively new and is now being piloted with great promise in cyberinfrastructure and science communities in the U.S., Europe, and elsewhere. Brokers act as intermediaries between information systems that implement well-defined interfaces, providing a bridge between communities using different specifications. The BCube project is helping to build a truly cross-disciplinary, global platform for data providers, cyberinfrastructure developers, and data users to make data more available and interoperable through a brokering framework. Building on the GEOSS Discover and Access Broker (DAB), BCube will develop new modules and services including * Expanded semantic brokering * Business Model support for work flows * Automated metadata generation * Automated linking to services discovered via web crawling * Plug and play for most community service buses * Credential passing for seamless access to data * Ranking of search results from brokered catalogs Because facilitating cross-discipline research involves cultural and well as technical challenges, BCube is also

  18. A project-based geoscience curriculum: select examples (United States)

    Brown, L. M.; Kelso, P. R.; White, R. J.; Rexroad, C. B.


    Principles of constructivist educational philosophy serve as a foundation for the recently completed National Science Foundation sponsored undergraduate curricular revision undertaken by the Geology Department of Lake Superior State University. We integrate lecture and laboratory sessions utilizing active learning strategies that focus on real-world geoscience experiences and problems. In this presentation, we discuss details of three research-like projects that require students to access original data, process and model the data using appropriate geological software, interpret and defend results, and disseminate results in reports, posters, and class presentations. The projects are from three upper division courses, Carbonate Systems, Sequence Stratigraphy, and Geophysical Systems, where teams of two to four students are presented with defined problems of durations ranging from a few weeks to an entire semester. Project goals and location, some background information, and specified dates and expectations for interim and final written and oral reports are provided to students. Some projects require the entire class to work on one data set, some require each team to be initially responsible for a portion of the project with teams ultimately merging data for interpretation and to arrive at final conclusions. Some projects require students to utilize data from appropriate geological web sites such as state geological surveys. Others require students to design surveys and utilize appropriate instruments of their choice for field data collection. Students learn usage and applications of appropriate geological software in compiling, processing, modeling, and interpreting data and preparing formal reports and presentations. Students uniformly report heightened interest and motivation when engaged in these projects. Our new curriculum has resulted in an increase in students" quantitative and interpretive skills along with dramatic improvement in communication and

  19. Geoscience in the Big Data Era: Are models obsolete? (United States)

    Yuen, D. A.; Zheng, L.; Stark, P. B.; Morra, G.; Knepley, M.; Wang, X.


    In last few decades, the velocity, volume, and variety of geophysical data have increased, while the development of the Internet and distributed computing has led to the emergence of "data science." Fitting and running numerical models, especially based on PDEs, is the main consumer of flops in geoscience. Can large amounts of diverse data supplant modeling? Without the ability to conduct randomized, controlled experiments, causal inference requires understanding the physics. It is sometimes possible to predict well without understanding the system—if (1) the system is predictable, (2) data on "important" variables are available, and (3) the system changes slowly enough. And sometimes even a crude model can help the data "speak for themselves" much more clearly. For example, Shearer (1991) used a 1-dimensional velocity model to stack long-period seismograms, revealing upper mantle discontinuities. This was a "big data" approach: the main use of computing was in the data processing, rather than in modeling, yet the "signal" became clear. In contrast, modelers tend to use all available computing power to fit even more complex models, resulting in a cycle where uncertainty quantification (UQ) is never possible: even if realistic UQ required only 1,000 model evaluations, it is never in reach. To make more reliable inferences requires better data analysis and statistics, not more complex models. Geoscientists need to learn new skills and tools: sound software engineering practices; open programming languages suitable for big data; parallel and distributed computing; data visualization; and basic nonparametric, computationally based statistical inference, such as permutation tests. They should work reproducibly, scripting all analyses and avoiding point-and-click tools.

  20. Strategic Planning for Interdisciplinary Science: a Geoscience Success Story (United States)

    Harshvardhan, D.; Harbor, J. M.


    The Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at Purdue University has engaged in a continuous strategic planning exercise for several years, including annual retreats since 1997 as an integral part of the process. The daylong Saturday retreat at the beginning of the fall semester has been used to flesh out the faculty hiring plan for the coming year based on the prior years' plans. The finalized strategic plan is built around the choice of three signature areas, two in disciplinary fields, (i) geodynamics and active tectonics, (ii) multi-scale atmospheric interactions and one interdisciplinary area, (iii) atmosphere/surface interactions. Our experience with strategic planning and the inherently interdisciplinary nature of geoscience helped us recently when our School of Science, which consists of seven departments, announced a competition for 60 new faculty positions that would be assigned based on the following criteria, listed in order of priority - (i) scientific merit and potential for societal impact, (ii) multidisciplinary nature of topic - level of participation and leveraging potential, (iii) alignment with Purdue's strategic plan - discovery, learning, engagement, (iv) existence of critical mass at Purdue and availability of faculty and student candidate pools, (v) corporate and federal sponsor interest. Some fifty white papers promoting diverse fields were submitted to the school and seven were chosen after a school-wide retreat. The department fared exceedingly well and we now have significant representation on three of the seven school areas of coalescence - (i) climate change, (ii) computational science and (iii) science education research. We are now in the process of drawing up hiring plans and developing strategies for allocation and reallocation of resources such as laboratory space and faculty startup to accommodate the 20% growth in faculty strength that is expected over the next five years.

  1. A project-centered undergraduate geoscience curriculum model (United States)

    Kelso, P.; Brown, L.


    Lake Superior State University, a comprehensive rural public university with approximately 10% Native-Americans enrolled, located in Michigan's eastern Upper Peninsula, U.S.A., has redesigned it's undergraduate geology major by developing an entire curriculum around a project-centered integration of geoscience sub-disciplines. Our model, adapted from modern educational theory, advocates sub-discipline integration by implementing problem-based learning through coursework that develops students' intellectual skills and engages them in using complex reasoning in real-world contexts. Students in this new curriculum will actively discover how to learn about a new geologic province, what questions to ask in approaching problems, where and how to find answers, and how to apply knowledge to solving problems. To accomplish our goals, we redesigned our pedagogy for all courses by creating active learning environments including cooperative learning, jigsaw methodologies, debates, investigation oriented laboratories, use of case studies, writing and communication intensive exercises, and research experiences. Fundamental sub-discipline concepts were identified by our national survey and are presented in the context of sequentially ordered problems that reflect increasing geological complexity. All courses above first year incorporate significant field experience. Our lower division courses include a two semester sequence of physical and historical geology in which physical processes are discussed in the context of their historical extension and one semester of structure/tectonics and mineralogy/petrology. The lower division culminates with a three week introductory field geology course. Our upper division courses include hydrologic systems, environmental systems, geochemical systems, tectonic systems, geophysical systems, clastic systems, carbonate systems, two seminar courses, and advanced field geology. The two field courses, offered in different geologic provinces, provide

  2. Monuments and Memorials: Geoscience and the Historic Record (United States)

    Williams, E.; Smith, B. L.


    Many communities have a cemetery, war memorial, public sculpture or old historic buildings that are an important part of the historic record of that community. Such monuments celebrate achievements, commemorate people who died serving their country, or a prominent former member of the local community. Monuments and memorials can trace the histiry of settlement within a community. After a number of years researching cemeteries and memorials, primarily in western Canada my research partner, a historian, and I, a geoscience educator,have documented many monuments and memorials that are succumbing to basic weathering processes. Original design choices can be dictated by cost, material availability, access to transportation and emotions. Climate, type of material, construction methods, technology used and long-term maintenance can all have significant impacts on the sustainability of that material record. Over the last five years we have given many lectures and workshops on the nature of cemeteries to family historians, historical societies and classroom educators. These workshops and lectures focus on developing a better ommunity understanding of the fragility of the record. Field trips by students of all ages can contextualize both geology and history. Seeing local monumanets can facilitate the development of a sense of time and place as well as an appreciation of the environmental impacts and the longevity of the record. For the earth science student documentation of the installation enable comparisons of weathering rates of different materials, the effects of local climate or impacts of pollution. Being able to go to a local memorial or cemetery to compare diffrent structures brings a powerful local context to the learning. However we both have concerns that modern techniques that enable the creation of more elaborate memorials are actually setting the stage for more rapid deterioration. I will illustrate a cross section of our reseacrh and the impact it has had on

  3. ESA Earth Observation missions at the service of geoscience (United States)

    Aschbacher, Josef


    The intervention will present ESA's Earth Observation programmes and their relevance to geoscience. ESA's Earth observation missions are mainly grouped into three categories: The Sentinel satellites in the context of the European Copernicus Programme, the scientific Earth Explorers and the meteorological missions. Developments, applications and scientific results for the different mission types will be addressed, along with overall trends and boundary conditions. The Earth Explorers, who form the science and research element of ESA's Living Planet Programme, focus on the atmosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere and Earth's interior. The Earth Explorers also aim at learning more about the interactions between these components and the impact that human activity is having on natural Earth processes. The Sentinel missions provide accurate, timely, long term and uninterrupted data to provide key information services, improving the way the environment is managed, and helping to mitigate the effects of climate change. The operational Sentinel satellites can also be exploited for scientific endeavours. Meteorological satellites help to predict the weather and feature the most mature application of Earth observation. Over the last four decades satellites have been radically improving the accuracy of weather forecasts by providing unique and indispensable input data to numerical computation models. In addition, Essential Climate Variables (ECV) are constantly monitored within ESA's Climate Change Initiative in order to create a long-term record of key geophysical parameters. All of these activities can only be carried out in international cooperation. Accordingly, ESA maintains long-standing partnerships with other space agencies and relevant institutions worldwide. In running its Earth observation programmes, ESA responds to societal needs and challenges as well as to requirements resulting from political priorities, such as the United Nations' Sustainable Development

  4. International Workshops for Teachers at the European Geosciences Union (United States)

    Laj, C.


    The 2005 edition of the EGU Geophysical Information for Teachers (GIFT) workshoptook place in April 2005 during the General Assembly of the European Gesciences Union. It reunited 70 teachers from 16 European Countries and 3 teachers from the USA. The general theme of this 2-days workshop was 'The history of the Earth' and it focussed on important, but somewhat ill-known aspects of the evolution of our planet. GIFT-2005 was preceeded by a one-day workshop on Natural Risk Assessment (NaRAs) which included aspects of seismology in the schools and two talks on the 2004 Sumatra tsunami. Both were organized by the Committee on Education of EGU. Both workshops comprised seminal talks by leading scientists in the field, but also presentations by science educators and presentations by the teachers themselved of some off-track activities in their schools. This combitation stimulated discussions between the teachers, scientists and science educators and among the teachers where the different languages did not appear to create major difficulties (the official language of the workshops was English). Some of the contacts between teachers are already evolving in long term collaborations between them and their respective schools. It clearly appears that reuniting teachers formed and teaching within different educational systems, leads to stimulating creative discussions and collaborations, each teacher benefitting from the different background of his/her colleagues. The great output of this kind of international workshop is to show that while there is no educational system 'better than all others', the interactions between teachers, scientists and sciences educators during a major scientific conference, create new stimulus and enthousiasm among the teachers and this will invariably lead to up-to-date and alive teaching of geo-sciences (and scicnes in general) in primary and secondary schools, i.e. where future geoscientist are formed.

  5. Grid Based Techniques for Visualization in the Geosciences (United States)

    Bollig, E. F.; Sowell, B.; Lu, Z.; Erlebacher, G.; Yuen, D. A.


    As experiments and simulations in the geosciences grow larger and more complex, it has become increasingly important to develop methods of processing and sharing data in a distributed computing environment. In recent years, the scientific community has shown growing interest in exploiting the powerful assets of Grid computing to this end, but the complexity of the Grid has prevented many scientists from converting their applications and embracing this possibility. We are investigating methods for development and deployment of data extraction and visualization services across the NaradaBrokering [1] Grid infrastructure. With the help of gSOAP [2], we have developed a series of C/C++ services for wavelet transforms, earthquake clustering, and basic 3D visualization. We will demonstrate the deployment and collaboration of these services across a network of NaradaBrokering nodes, concentrating on the challenges faced in inter-service communication, service/client division, and particularly web service visualization. Renderings in a distributed environment can be handled in three ways: 1) the data extraction service computes and renders everything locally and sends results to the client as a bitmap image, 2) the data extraction service sends results to a separate visualization service for rendering, which in turn sends results to a client as a bitmap image, and 3) the client itself renders images locally. The first two options allow for large visualizations in a distributed and collaborative environment, but limit interactivity of the client. To address this problem we are investigating the advantages of the JOGL OpenGL library [3] to perform renderings on the client side using the client's hardware for increased performance. We will present benchmarking results to ascertain the relative advantage of the three aforementioned techniques as a function of datasize and visualization task. [1] The NaradaBrokering Project, [2] gSOAP: C/C++ Web

  6. Unidata: A geoscience e-infrastructure for International Data Sharing (United States)

    Ramamurthy, Mohan


    The Internet and its myriad manifestations, including the World Wide Web, have amply demonstrated the compounding benefits of a global cyberinfrastructure and the power of networked communities as institutions and people exchange knowledge, ideas, and resources. The Unidata Program recognizes those benefits, and over the past several years it has developed a growing portfolio of international data distribution activities, conducted in close collaboration with academic, research and operational institutions on several continents, to advance earth system science education and research. The portfolio includes provision of data, tools, support and training as well as outreach activities that bring various stakeholders together to address important issues, all toward the goals of building a community with a shared vision. The overarching goals of Unidata's international data sharing activities include: • democratization of access-to and use-of data that describe the dynamic earth system by facilitating data access to a broad spectrum of observations and forecasts • building capacity and empowering geoscientists and educators worldwide by building encouraging local communities where data, tools, and best practices in education and research are shared • strengthening international science partnerships for exchanging knowledge and expertise • Supporting faculty and students at research and educational institutions in the use of Unidata systems building regional and global communities around specific geoscientific themes. In this presentation, I will present Unidata's ongoing data sharing activities in Latin America, Europe, Africa and Antarctica that are enabling linkages to existing and emergent e-infrastructures and operational networks, including recent advances to develop interoperable data systems, tools, and services that benefit the geosciences. Particular emphasis in the presentation will be made to describe the examples of the use of Unidata

  7. SAS- Semantic Annotation Service for Geoscience resources on the web (United States)

    Elag, M.; Kumar, P.; Marini, L.; Li, R.; Jiang, P.


    There is a growing need for increased integration across the data and model resources that are disseminated on the web to advance their reuse across different earth science applications. Meaningful reuse of resources requires semantic metadata to realize the semantic web vision for allowing pragmatic linkage and integration among resources. Semantic metadata associates standard metadata with resources to turn them into semantically-enabled resources on the web. However, the lack of a common standardized metadata framework as well as the uncoordinated use of metadata fields across different geo-information systems, has led to a situation in which standards and related Standard Names abound. To address this need, we have designed SAS to provide a bridge between the core ontologies required to annotate resources and information systems in order to enable queries and analysis over annotation from a single environment (web). SAS is one of the services that are provided by the Geosematnic framework, which is a decentralized semantic framework to support the integration between models and data and allow semantically heterogeneous to interact with minimum human intervention. Here we present the design of SAS and demonstrate its application for annotating data and models. First we describe how predicates and their attributes are extracted from standards and ingested in the knowledge-base of the Geosemantic framework. Then we illustrate the application of SAS in annotating data managed by SEAD and annotating simulation models that have web interface. SAS is a step in a broader approach to raise the quality of geoscience data and models that are published on the web and allow users to better search, access, and use of the existing resources based on standard vocabularies that are encoded and published using semantic technologies.

  8. Using Low Cost Environmental Sensors in Geoscience Education (United States)

    Leeman, J.; Ammon, C. J.; Anandakrishnan, S.


    Advances in process technology have drastically reduced the cost of manufacturing almost every type of sensor and micro-controller, putting low-to-mid grade sensor technology in the reach of educators and hobbyists. We demonstrate how a low cost magnetometer and an Arduino micro-controller can be used in education. Students can easily connect the sensor to the Arduino and collect three-component magnetic field data. Experiments can easily be turned into long-term monitoring projects by connecting sensors to the internet and providing an Internet-of-Things interface to store and to display the data in near-real time. Low-cost sensors are generally much noisier than their research grade counterparts, but can still provide an opportunity for students to learn about fundamental concepts such as signal quality, sampling, averaging, and filtering and to gain hands-on, concrete experience with observations. Sensors can be placed at different locations and compared both qualitatively and quantitatively. For example, with an inexpensive magnetometer, students can examine diurnal magnetic field variations and look for magnetic storms. Magnetic field orientation can be calculated and compared to the predicted geomagnetic field orientation at a given location. Data can be stored in simple text files to facilitate analysis with any convenient package. We illustrate the idea using Python notebooks, allowing students to explore the data interactively and to learn the basic principles of programming and reproducible research. Using an Arduino encourages students to interact with open-source data collection hardware and to experiment with ways to quickly, cheaply, and effectively measure the environment. Analysis of these data can lead to a deeper understanding of both geoscience and data processing.

  9. 3D for Geosciences: Interactive Tangibles and Virtual Models (United States)

    Pippin, J. E.; Matheney, M.; Kitsch, N.; Rosado, G.; Thompson, Z.; Pierce, S. A.


    Point cloud processing provides a method of studying and modelling geologic features relevant to geoscience systems and processes. Here, software including Skanect, MeshLab, Blender, PDAL, and PCL are used in conjunction with 3D scanning hardware, including a Structure scanner and a Kinect camera, to create and analyze point cloud images of small scale topography, karst features, tunnels, and structures at high resolution. This project successfully scanned internal karst features ranging from small stalactites to large rooms, as well as an external waterfall feature. For comparison purposes, multiple scans of the same object were merged into single object files both automatically, using commercial software, and manually using open source libraries and code. Files with format .ply were manually converted into numeric data sets to be analyzed for similar regions between files in order to match them together. We can assume a numeric process would be more powerful and efficient than the manual method, however it could lack other useful features that GUI's may have. The digital models have applications in mining as efficient means of replacing topography functions such as measuring distances and areas. Additionally, it is possible to make simulation models such as drilling templates and calculations related to 3D spaces. Advantages of using methods described here for these procedures include the relatively quick time to obtain data and the easy transport of the equipment. With regard to openpit mining, obtaining 3D images of large surfaces and with precision would be a high value tool by georeferencing scan data to interactive maps. The digital 3D images obtained from scans may be saved as printable files to create physical 3D-printable models to create tangible objects based on scientific information, as well as digital "worlds" able to be navigated virtually. The data, models, and algorithms explored here can be used to convey complex scientific ideas to a range of

  10. Geoethics and the Role of Professional Geoscience Societies (United States)

    Kieffer, S. W.; Palka, J. M.; Geissman, J. W.; Mogk, D. W.


    Codes of Ethics (Conduct) for geoscientists are formulated primarily by professional societies and the codes must be viewed in the context of the Goals (Missions, Values) of the societies. Our survey of the codes of approximately twenty-five societies reveals that most codes enumerate principles centered on practical issues regarding professional conduct of individuals such as plagiarism, fabrication, and falsification, and the obligation of individuals to the profession and society at large. With the exception of statements regarding the ethics of peer review, there is relatively little regarding the ethical obligations of the societies themselves. In essence, the codes call for traditionally honorable behavior of individual members. It is striking, given that the geosciences are largely relevant to the future of Earth, most current codes of societies fail to address our immediate obligations to the environment and Earth itself. We challenge professional organizations to consider the ethical obligations to Earth in both their statements of goals and in their codes of ethics. Actions by societies could enhance the efforts of individual geoscientists to serve society, especially in matters related to hazards, resources and planetary stewardship. Actions we suggest to be considered include: (1) Issue timely position statements on topics in which there is expertise and consensus (some professional societies such as AGU, GSA, AAAS, and the AMS, do this regularly, yet others not at all.); (2) Build databases of case studies regarding geoethics that can be used in university classes; (3) Hold interdisciplinary panel discussions with ethicists, scientists, and policy makers at annual meetings; (4) Foster publication in society journals of contributions relating to ethical questions; and (5) Aggressively pursue the incorporation of geoethical issues in undergraduate and graduate curricula and in continuing professional development.

  11. Attracting and Retaining Undergraduate Students in the Geosciences: A Multipronged Approach (United States)

    Chantale Damas, M.


    The geosciences are taught at relatively few colleges and universities in the United States. Furthermore, fewer students are selecting the geosciences as careers and where the loss of retired scientists is significant. Thus, new approaches and strategies are needed to attract and retain students in the geosciences. The aim of this project is to both increase the diversity and visibility of the geosciences at the undergraduate level. Using both an interdisciplinary and inter-institutional approach, the Queensborough Community College (QCC) of the City University of New York (CUNY) has been very successful at engaging students in educational activities and applied research in solar, geospace, and atmospheric physics, under the umbrella discipline of space weather. As an interdisciplinary field, space weather offers students a great opportunity to study the Sun-Earth connection. Additionally, students also receive support through several partner institutions including the NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center (GSFC) Community Coordinated Modeling Center (CCMC), four-year colleges and universities, and other summer research programs. With its institutional partners, QCC has implemented a year-long program with two components: 1) during the academic year, students are enrolled in a course-based introductory research (CURE) where they conduct research on real-world problems; and 2) during the summer, students are placed in research internships at partner institutions. This poster will describe these approaches, as well as present best strategies that are used to attract and retain students in the geosciences.

  12. Examining the Professional Development Experiences and Non-Technical Skills Desired for Geoscience Employment (United States)

    Houlton, H. R.; Ricci, J.; Wilson, C. E.; Keane, C.


    Professional development experiences, such as internships, research presentations and professional network building, are becoming increasingly important to enhance students' employability post-graduation. The practical, non-technical skills that are important for succeeding during these professional development experiences, such as public speaking, project management, ethical practices and writing, transition well and are imperative to the workplace. Thereby, graduates who have honed these skills are more competitive candidates for geoscience employment. Fortunately, the geoscience community recognizes the importance of these professional development opportunities and the skills required to successfully complete them, and are giving students the chance to practice non-technical skills while they are still enrolled in academic programs. The American Geosciences Institute has collected data regarding students' professional development experiences, including the preparation they receive in the corresponding non-technical skills. This talk will discuss the findings of two of AGI's survey efforts - the Geoscience Student Exit Survey and the Geoscience Careers Master's Preparation Survey (NSF: 1202707). Specifically, data highlighting the role played by internships, career opportunities and the complimentary non-technical skills will be discussed. As a practical guide, events informed by this research, such as AGI's professional development opportunities, networking luncheons and internships, will also be included.

  13. Building Pathways into the Geosciences for a Hispanic Community of Learners in El Paso (United States)

    Miller, K. C.; Andronicos, C. L.; Langford, R. P.


    Our goal is to expand minority participation in the geosciences at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) by increasing the number of Hispanic students who major in either Geological Sciences or a new interdisciplinary program in Environmental Sciences. UTEP has an enrollment of ca. 15,000 students of which 70% are Hispanic and 10% are Mexican Nationals and is one of the largest Hispanic-serving institutions in the country. The demographics of the UTEP student body (85% of whom come from the El Paso region) reflect those of our dominantly Hispanic metroplex of more than 2 million inhabitants on both sides of the US-Mexican border. We are taking a two-pronged approach to building a community of aspiring geoscientists in El Paso. First, we are establishing an outreach program to enhance awareness of the geosciences among local high school students. The centerpiece of this program is a two-week summer camp for high school juniors that will expose 75 students and 15 teachers to a variety of topics in the geosciences and demonstrate how the biology, chemistry, and physics covered in high school courses integrates with geoscience. Second, we are building a Research Experience for our undergraduates by offering stipends to college students in exchange for progress towards a bachelors degree in Geological or Environmental Sciences and participation in research with geoscience faculty and graduate students. Since January, 2002, we have had 7 undergraduate students, 15 high school students, and three teachers participate in our program.

  14. Recovery Of Short Wavelength Geophysical Signals With Future Delay-Doppler Altimeters (Cryosat Ii And Sentinel Type)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Ole Baltazar


    A number of geophysical phenomena in the open ocean are still unresolved by conventional 1 Hz altimetry, but could be observed through the potential improvements offered by SAR, or Delay-Doppler (DD), altimetry. The DD altimeter offers the following benefits with respect to conventional satellite...... wavelength geophysical signal related to mainly bathymetric features. The combination of upward continuation from the sea bottom and smoothing the altimeter observations resulted in the best recovery of geophysical signal for simulated 5-Hz DD observations. Simulations carried out in this investigation...... indicate, that if the Cryosat-II mission meets the mission goals, the possibility of recovering a huge number of geophysical signal not currently mapped and the possibility to recover global gravity to an accuracy of up to twice that known today from conventional satellite altimetry....

  15. Effect of High-Frequency Sea Waves on Wave Period Retrieval from Radar Altimeter and Buoy Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xifeng Wang


    Full Text Available Wave periods estimated from satellite altimetry data behave differently from those calculated from buoy data, especially in low-wind conditions. In this paper, the geometric mean wave period T a is calculated from buoy data, rather than the commonly used zero-crossing wave period T z . The geometric mean wave period uses the fourth moment of the wave frequency spectrum and is related to the mean-square slope of the sea surface measured using altimeters. The values of T a obtained from buoys and altimeters agree well (root mean square difference: 0.2 s only when the contribution of high-frequency sea waves is estimated by a wavenumber spectral model to complement the buoy data, because a buoy cannot obtain data from waves having wavelengths that are shorter than the characteristic dimension of the buoy.

  16. Gavdos/West Crete Cal-Val Site: Over a Decade Calibrations for Jason Series, SARAL/AltiKa, Cryosat-2, Sentinel-3 and Hy-2 Altimeter Satellites (United States)

    Mertikas, Stelios; DonLon, Craig; Mavrochordatos, Constantin; Tziavos, Ilias; Galanakis, Demitris; Vergos, George; Baltazar Andersen, Ole; Tripolitsiotis, Achilles; Frantzis, Xenofon; Lin, Mingsen; Qiao, Fangli


    This work presents and compares the latest altimeter calibration results for Jason series, the SARAL/AltiKa the Chinese HY-2 missions and the ESA missions of CryoSat-2 and Sentinel-3, conducted at the Gavdos/Crete calibration/validation facilities. At first, the Jason altimeter calibration values will be given for the ascending Pass No.109 and the descending Pass No.18, based on the GDR-E (Jason-1), GDR-D (Jason- 2) and GDR-T (Jason-3) products. Secondly, these values will be cross-examined against the altimeter bias for the SARAL/AltiKa (GDR-T) satellite at Gavdos Cal/Val using its reference ascending orbit No. 571. The Chinese HY-2 satellite altimeter bias will be presented using the CRS1 permanent site in southwest Crete for the descending HY-2 Pass No. 280, at 20 Hz based on SGDR data products. Finally, values will be compared against the Sentinel-3 altimeter. Additionally, altimeter biases as determined by locally developed Mean Sea Surface models, will be presented and compared with the conventional sea-surface calibration methodology.

  17. Ensemble Kalman filter assimilation of temperature and altimeter data with bias correction and application to seasonal prediction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. L. Keppenne


    Full Text Available To compensate for a poorly known geoid, satellite altimeter data is usually analyzed in terms of anomalies from the time mean record. When such anomalies are assimilated into an ocean model, the bias between the climatologies of the model and data is problematic. An ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF is modified to account for the presence of a forecast-model bias and applied to the assimilation of TOPEX/Poseidon (T/P altimeter data. The online bias correction (OBC algorithm uses the same ensemble of model state vectors to estimate biased-error and unbiased-error covariance matrices. Covariance localization is used but the bias covariances have different localization scales from the unbiased-error covariances, thereby accounting for the fact that the bias in a global ocean model could have much larger spatial scales than the random error.The method is applied to a 27-layer version of the Poseidon global ocean general circulation model with about 30-million state variables. Experiments in which T/P altimeter anomalies are assimilated show that the OBC reduces the RMS observation minus forecast difference for sea-surface height (SSH over a similar EnKF run in which OBC is not used. Independent in situ temperature observations show that the temperature field is also improved. When the T/P data and in situ temperature data are assimilated in the same run and the configuration of the ensemble at the end of the run is used to initialize the ocean component of the GMAO coupled forecast model, seasonal SSH hindcasts made with the coupled model are generally better than those initialized with optimal interpolation of temperature observations without altimeter data. The analysis of the corresponding sea-surface temperature hindcasts is not as conclusive.


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    胡建宇; HiroshiKAWAMURA; 洪华生; FumiakiKOBASHI; 谢强


    Some important tidal features of 8 major tidal constituents (M2, S2, K1, O1, P1,Sa, N2 and K2 ) in the china Seas and their adjacent sea areas were obtained using six years' TOPEX/POSEIDON altimeter data. The results showed that the obtained co-tidal and co-range charts for these major tidal constituents agreed well with those of previous researches using observational data from coastal tidal gauge stations and numerical models.

  19. DUACS DT2014: the new multi-mission altimeter data set reprocessed over 20 years (United States)

    Pujol, Marie-Isabelle; Faugère, Yannice; Taburet, Guillaume; Dupuy, Stéphanie; Pelloquin, Camille; Ablain, Michael; Picot, Nicolas


    The new DUACS DT2014 reprocessed products have been available since April 2014. Numerous innovative changes have been introduced at each step of an extensively revised data processing protocol. The use of a new 20-year altimeter reference period in place of the previous 7-year reference significantly changes the sea level anomaly (SLA) patterns and thus has a strong user impact. The use of up-to-date altimeter standards and geophysical corrections, reduced smoothing of the along-track data, and refined mapping parameters, including spatial and temporal correlation-scale refinement and measurement errors, all contribute to an improved high-quality DT2014 SLA data set. Although all of the DUACS products have been upgraded, this paper focuses on the enhancements to the gridded SLA products over the global ocean. As part of this exercise, 21 years of data have been homogenized, allowing us to retrieve accurate large-scale climate signals such as global and regional MSL trends, interannual signals, and better refined mesoscale features.An extensive assessment exercise has been carried out on this data set, which allows us to establish a consolidated error budget. The errors at mesoscale are about 1.4 cm2 in low-variability areas, increase to an average of 8.9 cm2 in coastal regions, and reach nearly 32.5 cm2 in high mesoscale activity areas. The DT2014 products, compared to the previous DT2010 version, retain signals for wavelengths lower than ˜ 250 km, inducing SLA variance and mean EKE increases of, respectively, +5.1 and +15 %. Comparisons with independent measurements highlight the improved mesoscale representation within this new data set. The error reduction at the mesoscale reaches nearly 10 % of the error observed with DT2010. DT2014 also presents an improved coastal signal with a nearly 2 to 4 % mean error reduction. High-latitude areas are also more accurately represented in DT2014, with an improved consistency between spatial coverage and sea ice edge

  20. Spatial-temporal analysis of sea level changes in China seas and neighboring oceans by merged altimeter data (United States)

    Xu, Yao; Zhou, Bin; Yu, Zhifeng; Lei, Hui; Sun, Jiamin; Zhu, Xingrui; Liu, Congjin


    The knowledge of sea level changes is critical important for social, economic and scientific development in coastal areas. Satellite altimeter makes it possible to observe long term and large scale dynamic changes in the ocean, contiguous shelf seas and coastal zone. In this paper, 1993-2015 altimeter data of Topex/Poseidon and its follow-on missions is used to get a time serious of continuous and homogeneous sea level anomaly gridding product. The sea level rising rate is 0.39 cm/yr in China Seas and the neighboring oceans, 0.37 cm/yr in the Bo and Yellow Sea, 0.29 cm/yr in the East China Sea and 0.40 cm/yr in the South China Sea. The mean sea level and its rising rate are spatial-temporal non-homogeneous. The mean sea level shows opposite characteristics in coastal seas versus open oceans. The Bo and Yellow Sea has the most significant seasonal variability. The results are consistent with in situ data observation by the Nation Ocean Agency of China. The coefficient of variability model is introduced to describe the spatial-temporal variability. Results show that the variability in coastal seas is stronger than that in open oceans, especially the seas off the entrance area of the river, indicating that the validation of altimeter data is less reasonable in these seas.