NASA satellite to study aerosols' effect on climate change
Sensors and monitors will be on board the Glory satellite to improve measurement of aerosols and airborne particles that can affect climate.
Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 04:45 PM
CLIMATE STUDY: The satellite will fly in low-Earth orbit at an altitude of 438 miles, and is expected to collect data for about three years. (Photo: jupiterimages)
NASA said Thursday it was planning to launch the Glory satellite in late February to help scientists study the effect of aerosols on the Earth's climate.
After Glory's launch on February 23, it will join a fleet of satellites known as the "A-Train" that observe Earth and send data back to scientists.
State-of-the-art sensors and monitors will be on board Glory to improve measurement of aerosols, airborne particles that can affect climate by reflecting or absorbing solar radiation.
"Glory is going to help scientists tackle one of the major uncertainties in climate change predictions identified by the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change: the influence of aerosols on the energy balance of our planet," said Michael Freilich, director of NASA's Earth Science Division.
"This mission also marks the first satellite launch under President Obama's climate initiative that will advance the United States' contribution to cutting-edge and policy-relevant climate change science."
The satellite will fly in low-Earth orbit at an altitude of 438 miles, and is expected to collect data for about three years.
Copyright 2011 AFP Global Edition