National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Areas of Global Change Research. NASA research efforts in global change involve space-based studies of the Earth as an integrated system, including research and satellite programs studying atmospheric ozone, ocean surface winds, tropical precipitation, and the Earth's upper atmosphere. The space-based activity complements ongoing ground-based research programs in the observation, understanding, and modeling of radiation, climate dynamics, and hydrology; ecosystem dynamics and biogeochemical cycles; atmospheric chemistry; solid Earth science; and the processing, archiving, retrieval, dissemination, and use of global change data. The focus is Earth system science, which involves interdisciplinary research and coupled modeling. Development of algorithms for retrieval of the information content of space-based, remotely sensed observations is carried out as part of the flight mission.
|ES||Airborne Science Program||19.0||20.7||20.1|
|ES||Applications Research Program||2.9||18.6a||4.6|
|ES||Atmospheric Chemical Modeling||6.5||6.5||6.5|
|ES||Atmospheric Dynamics and Remote Sensing||5.2||5.3||5.3|
|ES||Geodynamics and Geopotential Fields||13.5||13.6||13.6|
|ES||Global Data Integration and Validation||3.7||3.8||3.8|
|ES||Global Modeling and Analysis Program||6.2||6.2||6.2|
|ES||Interdisciplinary Research and Analysis||18.1||20.4||29.2|
|ES||Land Cover and Use Change||8.7||6.3||6.3|
|ES||Land Surface Hydrology||5.1||5.1||5.1|
|ES||Mission Analysis Program||32.9||40.0||42.0|
|ES||Natural Hazards Program||4.2||4.3||4.3|
|ES||Ocean Color Data Purchase/SeaWiFS||2.4||2.5||2.5|
|ES||Pathfinder Science Studies||6.6||3.4||3.5|
|ES||Physical Oceanography and Ocean Modeling||7.9||7.5||7.5|
|ES||Radiation Science Program||6.6||7.7||7.7|
|ES||Tropical Rainfall Measurement Science||6.1||0.4||0.0|
|ES||Uncrewed Aerial Vehicle Science||0.3||1.9||2.0|
|NASA Global Change Science Program||252.3||274.6||275.1|
|ES||Advanced Geostationary Studies||2.0||3.0||0.0|
|ES||Commercial Remote Sensing||19.0||21.5||24.8|
|ES||Earth Systems Science Pathfinder||14.0||33.9||70.0|
|ES||EOS Data and Information Systems||234.6||209.9||256.6|
|ES||EOS Flight Development||437.9||550.8||505.0|
|ES||EOS Special Spacecraft||72.5||101.2||152.1|
|ES||HPCC Earth Remote Sensing||28.3||18.3||14.5|
|ES||Lewis & Clark Land Imaging Spacecraft||12.0||3.0||5.0|
|ES||Payloads and Instrument Development||2.6||2.6||1.0|
|ES||Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer||3.9||8.2||4.9|
|ES||Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission||17.3||0.9||0.0|
|NASA Global Change Hardware Development||1116.3||1092.7||1096.9|
|aFunded above budget request (Congressional add-on).|
|bIncludes$50M to be transferred to the International Space Station, if necessary.|
|ES||Earth Science (formerly Mission to Planet Earth)|
FY99 Program Highlights. The overall goal of the Earth Science (ES) program (formerly Mission to Planet Earth) is to understand the Earth system and the effects of natural and human- induced changes on the global environment. To preserve and improve the Earth's environment for future generations, policies and decisions worldwide should have the strongest possible scientific basis. The vantage point of space provides information that is obtainable in no other way about the Earth's land, atmosphere, ice, oceans, and biota, as well as the impact of humans on the Earth system.
The science and observations of NASA's ES program are becoming increasingly important as the demand for economic progress by the growing global population drives policies that encourage natural resource depletion and rapidly increasing emissions of environmental pollutants. In addition, remote sensing has the potential to improve dramatically crop and forest yield predictions, seasonal and interannual climate forecasts, urban planning, mineral exploration, and many other activities of socioeconomic importance. In concert with the global change research community, the ES program is utilizing space to lead the development of knowledge required to support the complex national and international policy decisions that lie ahead.
As was the case last year, this edition of Our Changing Planet divides the ES budget into two main components: 1) Scientific research costs, and 2) the costs associated with satellite, aircraft, and balloon measurements, operations, and data processing and distribution (including mission costs such as launch, flight, instrument and technology development, fabrication assembly, integration, and testing, as well as mission operation support).
- Scientific Research Costs. The scientific research component of the ES budget is supported by an integrated science plan that relates research plans to space observations, and fully integrates the Earth Observing System (EOS) and non-EOS science. EOS is a program of multiple spacecraft and interdisciplinary science investigations designed to provide a 15-year data set of key parameters needed in order to understand global climate change. The major themes of NASA's ES Science Research Plan are consistent with the USGCRP. They are Land-Cover and Land-Use Change Research, Seasonal to Interannual Climate Variability and Prediction, Natural Hazards Research and Applications, Long-Term Climate-Natural Variability and Change Research, and Atmospheric Ozone Research.
Against the backdrop of the overall ES effort to better understand the state and health of the Earth's life-support systems, these five research focus areas target specific research issues important to national and international environmental and economic security. For example, an important priority is to provide an accurate assessment of the extent and health of the world's forests, grasslands, and agricultural resources. In a time of rapid, and often unrecorded, land-use change, observations from space are the only source of objective information on the human use of land. A closely related priority is to improve understanding and prediction of seasonal to interannual climate variation. Reducing uncertainties in climate predictions out to a season or a year in advance can help improve dramatically the efficiency of water use for agriculture and hydropower, as well as improve contingency planning for energy demand and in other economic sectors.
In addition, the ES natural hazards research priority emphasizes the use of remote-sensing observations for the characterization and mitigation of drought and flood impacts. There is increasing evidence that predictions of extreme weather events can be improved by understanding their links to interannual climate phenomena, such as the El Niño events. The ES Science Plan also calls for special attention to measuring and modeling the relative influence of forcing factors in long-term climate change, including clouds, aerosols, and greenhouse gases, in order to improve the understanding and prediction of climate on time scales of decades to centuries. A continuing priority area for ES is to understand the causes and consequences of changes in atmospheric ozone. Research to resolve questions related to stratospheric ozone depletion continues to make great progress, and increased emphasis is now being focused on the changing composition of the lower atmosphere, which is especially sensitive to the unprecedented growth of pollutant emissions in East Asia and other rapidly developing regions.
- Costs Associated with Satellite, Aircraft, and Balloon Measurements, Operations and Data Processing and Distribution. The Earth Observing System is a program of multiple spacecraft (the AM, PM, and CHEM series, Landsat-7, and others) and interdisciplinary science investigations to provide a 15- year data set of key parameters needed to gain a fuller understanding of global climate change. The first EOS satellite launches begin in 1998, with AM-1 and Landsat-7.
Preceding EOS are a number of individual satellite and Shuttle-based missions which are helping to reveal the basic processes of atmospheric chemistry (Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite-- UARS/1991), ozone distribution and depletion (Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer--TOMS/1978, 1991, 1996, and 2000), ocean topography and circulation (TOPEX/Poseidon/1992), ocean winds (NASA Scatterometer--NSCAT/1996), and global tropical precipitation (Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission--TRMM/1997), among others. These provide the scientific and technological foundation on which EOS builds. TRMM was launched in November 1997, and is now fully operational. It will provide important data on precipitation in the tropics that will help better understand the global hydrological cycle.
Complementing EOS will be a series of small, rapid-development Earth System Science Pathfinder (ESSP) missions to study emerging science questions and make innovative measurements in parallel with the 15-year mission of EOS. ESSP will feature low life-cycle costs, peer-reviewed science, and missions based on best science value. The first two ESSP missions--Vegetation Canopy Lidar (VCL) and Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE)--were selected and are scheduled for launch in 2000 and 2001, respectively. In addition, the New Millennium Program (NMP) provides for the infusion of innovative new technologies into the ES program, with an initial focus on the second and third series of EOS measurements, and will emphasize fast-track development and low- cost demonstration missions. These technologies, which will lead to the development of smaller and lighter-weight instruments, will reduce annual program expenditures in the post-FY2000 time frame.
In late 1998, QuickScat will be launched to fill the gap in critical sea surface wind data, resulting from the premature in-orbit failure of the Japanese ADEOS-1 spacecraft. The measurements to be made by these and other future ES missions as well as current in-orbit missions provide data products that are used extensively in the ES science program. The program encompasses more than 1,700 scientific activities at universities, research laboratories, and government research organizations. These activities are providing an ever-increasing scientific understanding of the global environment and the effects of natural and human sources of change.
In November 1997, eleven vendors were selected under Phase 1 of the Commercial Data Purchase. The scientific evaluation of their example data products will be carried out by the scientific community, and those providing high science value will be selected for Phase 2, the commercial provision of scientifically useful data sets.
ES has adopted an evolutionary approach to fulfilling its mission and goals. NASA completed a comprehensive review of the entire ES enterprise. The goal was to enable a focus on near-term science and associated applications; explicit provisions for new technology infusion; reduction in life-cycle cost of the EOS program; provision of new science opportunities through smaller, quicker and less expensive missions; and closer participation with other Federal agencies, commercial firms, and international partners. This approach was endorsed by the National Research Council (NRC) through its Board on Sustainable Development.
In 1997, NASA conducted its first Biennial Review of ES, focusing on the following five key areas: Program balance and the restoration of Research and Analysis (R&A) funding; EOSDIS Core System; CHEM-1 mission architecture; technology infusion strategy; and implementation of the program after 2002. The first three areas address issues remaining in the time frame of the first EOS series. The latter two look to the future, and enable a fundamentally different and vastly more flexible means of planning and implementing Earth system science missions. A Science Implementation Plan to be produced in 1998 will lay out a strategy and priorities for implementing the program.
Related Research. NASA includes all research in support of global change within the focused research program.
Mapping of Budget Request to Appropriations Legislation. In the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, and Independent Agencies Appropriations Bill, National Aeronautics and Space Administration USGCRP activities are funded under the NASA section of Title III-Independent Agencies, within the Science, Aeronautics, and Technology account. Within this account, Appropriations Committee reports specify funding for the Earth Science program, which is the NASA contribution to the USGCRP.