#ESA; #ClimateCrisis; #ESAClimateChangeInitiative; #NatureGeoscience
New York/Canadian-Media: While the climate crisis is, unfortunately, a reality, it is all too easy to assume that every aspect of our changing world is a consequence of climate change.
Image: Lake Ontario temperature. Image credit: ESA.
Assumptions play no role in key environmental assessments and mitigation strategies such as we will see in the upcoming UN climate change COP-26 conference – it’s the science and hard facts that are critical. New research published this week is a prime example of facts that matter. Using model projections combined with satellite data from ESA’s Climate Change Initiative, this latest research shows that the global rise in the temperature of lake water and dwindling lake-ice cover can only be explained by the increase in greenhouse gas emissions since the industrial revolution – in other words, humans are clearly to blame.
According to the paper published in Nature Geoscience, the influence of human-induced climate change is evident in rising lake-water temperatures and the fact that lake ice-cover forms later and melts sooner.
Luke Grant, from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and lead author, said,
It was also observed that it is highly unlikely that the trends in lake temperatures and ice cover in recent decades can be explained solely by natural climate variability.
Moreover, the researchers found clear similarities between the observed changes in lakes and model simulations of lakes in a climate influenced by greenhouse gas emissions.
“This is clear evidence that human-induced climate change has an impact on lakes,” says Iestyn Woolway, former ESA Fellow and co-author of the study.
Projections of lake temperatures and ice cover unanimously indicate increasing trends for the future.
For every 1°C increase in global air temperature, lakes are estimated to warm by 0.9°C and lose 9.7 days of ice cover. In addition, the analysis revealed significant differences in the impact on lakes at the end of the century, depending on the measures we take to combat climate change.
“Our results underline the great importance of the Paris Agreement to protect the health of lakes around the world,” said Wim Thiery, VUB climate expert and senior author of the study. “If we manage to drastically reduce our emissions in the coming decades, we can still avoid the worst consequences for lakes worldwide.”
Large asteroids to fly past Earth starting tonight; NASA’s Lucy mission of Jupiter’s Trojan asteroids, launched today
#LargeAsterods; #NASA; #EarthObjectStudies; #Lucy; #JupiterTrojanAsteroidField
New York/Canadian-Media: The coming weeks would see several large asteroids pass closely by Earth, media reports said.
Asteroids. Image credit: NASA.wsu.edu
According to NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Object Studies, the first asteroid 525-foot wide 2021 SM3 will whiz past Earth on Oct 15. Before the end of Nov, seven larger asteroids are predicted to pass close by Earth, the biggest of which, 2004 UE, has a diameter of 1,246 feet. On Oct 22, asteroid 1996 VB3 at 2.1 million miles, will pass closest to Earth
Scientists say that, none of the asteroids although very close by interstellar standards, will be visible without a telescope.
NASA’s Lucy mission, the agency’s first to Jupiter’s Trojan asteroids, launched at 5:34 a.m. EDT Saturday on a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.
A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket with the Lucy spacecraft aboard is seen in this 2 minute and 30 second exposure photograph as it launches from Space Launch Complex 41, Saturday, Oct. 16, 2021, at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. Lucy will be the first spacecraft to study Jupiter's Trojan Asteroids. Like the mission's namesake – the fossilized human ancestor, "Lucy," whose skeleton provided unique insight into humanity's evolution – Lucy will revolutionize our knowledge of planetary origins and the formation of the solar system. Image Credits: NASA/Bill Ingalls
Over the next 12 years, Lucy will fly by one main-belt asteroid and seven Trojan asteroids, making it the agency’s first single spacecraft mission in history to explore so many different asteroids. Lucy will investigate these “fossils” of planetary formation up close during its journey.
“Lucy embodies NASA’s enduring quest to push out into the cosmos for the sake of exploration and science, to better understand the universe and our place within it,” said NASA Administrator Bill Nelson. “I can’t wait to see what mysteries the mission uncovers!”
#EarthObservation; #ESA; #MarketPerspective; #GeoBuiz
New York/Canadian-Media: With a boom in the global market for Earth observation information and data products, participants at this year’s Φ-week conference have been digging deep into the ‘market perspective’. This important topic includes how to gain a better understanding of what governments, industry, the public and other users of Earth observation products and services need and expect to create value for society and the economy.
ESA Φ-week 2021.Market perspective. Image credit: www.esa.int
According to the latest report from the Geospatial Industry Outlook and Readiness Index, GeoBuiz, the Earth observation industry as a whole is estimated to have been worth almost US $58 billion in 2019, rising to almost US $76 billion in 2020. Moreover, it is thought that this steep rise merely marks the beginning of bigger things to come.
In addition, with respect to Europe industry, the 2021 survey published by the European Association of Remote Sensing Companies, EARSC, indicates that in 2020 there was a 24% growth in the number of companies associated with the Earth observation industry, as well as a 24% increase in revenue and a 17% rise in employees, compared to 2019.
Essentially, Earth observation satellite data made available through ESA and through Europe’s Copernicus program are free and open to all. While this traditional approach of providing Earth observation data works extremely well for the scientific community and established users of data-based services, and support business creation in Europe, the rapidly growing commercial market for Earth observation products opens a myriad of opportunities – for the Earth observation industry, and for the protection of our planet.
uring the session dedicated to the market perspective at Φ-week, Steve Bochinger from Euroconsult delivered an extremely positive view of the future Earth observation market with emerging new verticals, albeit not completely free from potential complications.
ESA’s Geraldine Naja showed how ESA, with its newly established Directorate of Commercialisation, Industry and Procurement, will take a new approach to supporting European industry, taking benefits from worldwide commercial and New Space opportunities.
During his talk, Marc Nolla Harvey, Director of Strategic Initiatives at SAP, said simply, “Earth observation benefits companies by allowing them to make more profit, be more efficient and be more sustainable.”
And, Raffaele Mauro, General Partner at Primo Space Fund, a venture investor organisation focused on the space business, explained the why private investors such as venture capitalists increasingly see the New Space economy as a very interesting investment target, which explains the current boom in private investment.
Environmental, social and governance, or ESG, criteria are also increasingly important to companies, their investors and other stakeholders. With growing concern about companies’ ethical and sustainability practices, Earth observation has a critical role to play.
While ESG certification picks up pace, the growth in Europe’s market for Earth observation is also closely linked the European Commissions’ Green Deal – which aims to transform the EU into a modern, resource-efficient and competitive economy, ensuring no net emissions of greenhouse gases by 2050. Businesses and industry in many sectors such as agriculture, energy, insurance, security, are clearly using Earth observation to help in their efforts to curb greenhouse emissions and adopt more sustainable and profitable practices.
This growth in the Earth observation market comes at a time when there are an increasing number of commercial companies developing small satellites relatively quickly and selling the resulting data products directly to their customers alongside space agencies such as ESA, which tend to take the ‘slow road’ developing satellite missions, which either prove new observing techniques, respond to gaps in scientific knowledge or deliver systematic data over many years.
ESA Φ-week 2021.Image credit: www.esa.int
Simonetta Cheli, ESA’s Head of the Earth Observation Strategy, Programme & Coordination Office, said, “The need for new ways for ESA to support the commercial Earth observation industry to develop innovative satellite missions, products and services remains more important than ever, particularly with respect to growing market demands and to monitoring and managing the impacts of climate change. We are adopting the concept of New Space to explore different ways of bringing benefits to the commercial world, and ultimately help building a stronger and leading European EO economy.”
Giuseppe Borghi, Head of ESA’s of ɸ-lab Division, added, “Sessions at this year’s Φ-week are certainly sparking some interesting and lively discussions. We are hearing a lot about the needs of different sectors such as the agriculture, energy, re/insurance, security and private investors and how ESA can support the growth of a flourishing ecosystem. Commercialisation is one of the priorities in ESA’s Agenda 2025 and we, as ESA, have to work together with the market, the Earth observation industry and private investors to ensure that everyone can benefit from the wealth of information we get from space.
ESA Director General speaking at the opening session
“We can do this in a number of ways. We are working hard to tap into disruptive technologies and business models, including quantum computing, machine learning and, in general, artificial intelligence, the internet of things and cloud computing in space. We are making transformative innovation funding available through challenges as announced by the ESA Director General during the Φ-week opening session. A key instrument is also our commercialisation co-funding programme InCubed, backed by support from our Member States and the partnerships we build with leading research centres, industry and private investors.”
While Φ-week continues and ‘the market perspective’ becomes clearer, there are already other moves towards blending traditional Earth observation with business initiatives. For example, ESA has just signed a contract with ICEYE, a commercial provider of satellite radar imagery, to include their constellation of small satellites in the fleet of missions contributing to Europe’s Copernicus environmental monitoring program – a perfect example of New Space.
This week has also seen the signing of a contract with the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence to support a new development initiative focused on artificial intelligence for Earth Observation
#NASAPerseveranceRover; #Jezerocrater; #BoulderBeds
New York/Canadian-Media: The first scientific analysis of images taken by NASA's Perseverance rover has now confirmed that Mars' Jezero crater—which today is a dry, wind-eroded depression—was once a quiet lake, fed steadily by a small river some 3.7 billion years ago, phys.org/news reports said.
This image of an escarpment, or scarp – a long, steep slope – along the delta of Mars’ Jezero Crater was generated using data from the Perseverance rover’s Mastcam-Z instrument. The inset image at top is a close-up provided by the Remote Microscopic Imager, which is part of the SuperCam instrument. Credit: RMI: NASA/JPL-Caltech/LANL/CNES/CNRS/ASU/MSSSMastcam-Z: NASA/JPL-Caltech/ASU/MSSS
The first scientific analysis of images taken by NASA's Perseverance rover has now confirmed that Mars' Jezero crater—which today is a dry, wind-eroded depression—was once a quiet lake, fed steadily by a small river some 3.7 billion years ago.
The images also reveal evidence that the crater endured flash floods. This flooding was energetic enough to sweep up large boulders from tens of miles upstream and deposit them into the lakebed, where the massive rocks lie today.
The new analysis, published today in the journal Science, is based on images of the outcropping rocks inside the crater on its western side. Satellites had previously shown that this outcrop, seen from above, resembled river deltas on Earth, where layers of sediment are deposited in the shape of a fan as the river feeds into a lake.
Perseverance's new images, taken from inside the crater, confirm that this outcrop was indeed a river delta. Based on the sedimentary layers in the outcrop, it appears that the river delta fed into a lake that was calm for much of its existence, until a dramatic shift in climate triggered episodic flooding at or toward the end of the lake's history.
"If you look at these images, you're basically staring at this epic desert landscape. It's the most forlorn place you could ever visit," says Benjamin Weiss, professor of planetary sciences in MIT's Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences and a member of the analysis team. "There's not a drop of water anywhere, and yet, here we have evidence of a very different past. Something very profound happened in the planet's history."
As the rover explores the crater, scientists hope to uncover more clues to its climatic evolution. Now that they have confirmed the crater was once a lake environment, they believe its sediments could hold traces of ancient aqueous life. In its mission going forward, Perseverance will look for locations to collect and preserve sediments. These samples will eventually be returned to Earth, where scientists can probe them for Martian biosignatures.
"We now have the opportunity to look for fossils," says team member Tanja Bosak, associate professor of geobiology at MIT. "It will take some time to get to the rocks that we really hope to sample for signs of life. So, it's a marathon, with a lot of potential."
On Feb. 18, 2021, the Perseverance rover landed on the floor of Jezero crater, a little more than a mile away from its western fan-shaped outcrop. In the first three months, the vehicle remained stationary as NASA engineers performed remote checks of the rover's many instruments.
During this time, two of Perseverance's cameras, Mastcam-Z and the SuperCam Remote Micro-Imager (RMI), captured images of their surroundings, including long-distance photos of the outcrop's edge and a formation known as Kodiak butte, a smaller outcop that planetary geologists surmise may have once been connected to the main fan-shaped outcrop but has since partially eroded.
This annotated image indicates the locations of NASA’s Perseverance rover (lower right), as well as the “Kodiak” butte (lower left) and several prominent steep banks known as escarpments, or scarps, along the delta of Jezero Crater. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona/USGSO
Once the rover downlinked images to Earth, NASA's Perseverance science team processed and combined the images, and were able to observe distinct beds of sediment along Kodiak butte in surprisingly high resolution. The researchers measured each layer's thickness, slope, and lateral extent, finding that the sediment must have been deposited by flowing water into a lake, rather than by wind, sheet-like floods, or other geologic processes.
The rover also captured similar tilted sediment beds along the main outcrop. These images, together with those of Kodiak, confirm that the fan-shaped formation was indeed an ancient delta and that this delta fed into an ancient Martian lake.
"Without driving anywhere, the rover was able to solve one of the big unknowns, which was that this crater was once a lake," Weiss says. "Until we actually landed there and confirmed it was a lake, it was always a question."
When the researchers took a closer look at images of the main outcrop, they noticed large boulders and cobbles embedded in the youngest, topmost layers of the delta. Some boulders measured as wide as 1 meter across, and were estimated to weigh up to several tons. These massive rocks, the team concluded, must have come from outside the crater, and was likely part of bedrock located on the crater rim or else 40 or more miles upstream.
This image of “Kodiak” – one remnant of the fan-shaped deposit of sediments inside Mars’ Jezero Crater known as the delta – was taken by Perseverance’s Mastcam-Z instrument on Feb. 22, 2021. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/ASU/MSSS
Judging from their current location and dimensions, the team says the boulders were carried downstream and into the lakebed by a flash-flood that flowed up to 9 meters per second and moved up to 3,000 cubic meters of water per second.
"You need energetic flood conditions to carry rocks that big and heavy," Weiss says. "It's a special thing that may be indicative of a fundamental change in the local hydrology or perhaps the regional climate on Mars."
Because the huge rocks lie in the upper layers of the delta, they represent the most recently deposited material. The boulders sit atop layers of older, much finer sediment. This stratification, the researchers say, indicates that for much of its existence, the ancient lake was filled by a gently flowing river. Fine sediments—and possibly organic material—drifted down the river, and settled into a gradual, sloping delta.
However, the crater later experienced sudden flash floods that deposited large boulders onto the delta. Once the lake dried up, and over billions of years wind eroded the landscape, leaving the crater we see today.
The cause of this climate turnaround is unknown, although Weiss says the delta's boulders may hold some answers.
"The most surprising thing that's come out of these images is the potential opportunity to catch the time when this crater transitioned from an Earth-like habitable environment, to this desolate landscape wasteland we see now," he says. "These boulder beds may be records of this transition, and we haven't seen this in other places on Mars."
#ESA; #SpaceEconomy; #EarthObservation; #NewSpaceTechnologiesandServices
New York/Canadian-Media: Focusing on the New Space economy and innovations in Earth observation, ESA’s fourth Φ-week kicks off on Monday 11 October. Join us live for two of the main sessions: the Opening session on Monday at 10:30 CEST and the Blending New Space Technologies and Services session on Tuesday at 16:00 CEST.
As the world starts to return to normality in the wake of the COVID pandemic, this year’s Φ-week is a hybrid event, with registered participants attending virtually and invited speakers present at ESA’s Centre for Earth Observation in Italy.
However, part of this not-to-be-missed event can be enjoyed by all – simply tune into ESA’s Web TV and follow the live transmission links.
ESA. Web TV. Image credit: ESA
Monday 11 October 10:30–12:00: Opening
Starting with a welcome address by ESA Director General, Josef Aschbacher, this year’s Φ-week opening session includes talks from a panel of experts all discussing their visions of New Space.
The speakers include Toni Tolker-Nielsen, ESA Acting Director of Earth Observation Programmes; Ekaterini Kavvada, Director of Innovation and Outreach at the European Commission’s DG DEFIS; Kris Peeters, Vice President of the European Investment Bank; Mark Boggett, co-founder and CEO of Seraphim Capital; and Rafal Modrzewski CEO and co-founder of ICEYE.
ESA Φ-WEEK. Virtual Event: 11-15 October 2021
Tuesday 12 October 16:00–17:00: Blending New Space Technologies
Discussions in this session focus on the ‘space silo mentality’ and how to break down the traditional barriers.
The event features high-level decision-makers from ESA’s Earth Observation Program, Telecommunication and Integrated Application and Navigation directorates, together with ESA’s Director General and representative from different industries. They will discuss key elements in European strategy to develop a strong New Space sector across the technological borders of space, such as the Space Connectivity program, the Destination Earth initiative, Copernicus and more – and the key roles that ESA and industry can play.
Over the course of the week, the event, as a whole, will highlight how the New Space economy is developing in Europe alongside fierce competition worldwide, and how it can contribute to the EU Green Deal, Digital Europe Program, Destination Earth initiative, UN Sustainable Development Goals and, in general, in context with the EU Space Strategy and the European space sector.
This is the fourth edition of Φ-week, but looking back at previous editions, it is clear that Φ-week can claim numerous successes. For example, the focus of the 2019 edition was artificial intelligence and just two years later, at Φ-week 2021, the first image was presented from the Φ-sat-1 mission, the first AI technology carried on a European Earth observation mission. Last year, Digital Twin Earth took center stage, and this concept is now flourishing with ESA and partners in the process of making it a reality for the benefit of a green and digital Europe.
Remember to tune into ESA’s Web TV to get a ringside seat of these two sessions selected to be livestreamed
#Washington; #NASA; #Landsat9; #USGS; #EROS; #ULA;
Washington/Canadian-Media: Landsat 9, a NASA satellite built to monitor the Earth’s land surface, successfully launched at 2:12 p.m. EDT Monday from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California, NASA News release said.
The United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket with the Landsat 9 satellite onboard launches, Monday, Sept. 27, 2021, from Space Launch Complex 3 at Vandenberg Space Force Base in California. The Landsat 9 satellite is a joint NASA/U.S. Geological Survey mission that will continue the legacy of monitoring Earth’s land and coastal regions. Image Credits: NASA/Bill Ingalls
A joint mission with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Landsat 9 lifted off on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Vandenberg’s Space Launch Complex 3E. Norway’s Svalbard satellite-monitoring ground station acquired signals from the spacecraft about 83 minutes after launch. Landsat 9 is performing as expected as it travels to its final orbital altitude of 438 miles (705 kilometers).
“NASA uses the unique assets of our own unprecedented fleet, as well as the instruments of other nations, to study our own planet and its climate systems,” said NASA Administrator Bill Nelson. “With a 50-year data bank to build on, Landsat 9 will take this historic and invaluable global program to the next level. We look forward to working with our partners at the U.S. Geological Survey and the Department of the Interior again on Landsat Next, because we never stop advancing our work to understand our planet.”
“Today’s successful launch is a major milestone in the nearly 50-year joint partnership between USGS and NASA who, for decades, have partnered to collect valuable scientific information and use that data to shape policy with the utmost scientific integrity,” said Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland. “As the impacts of the climate crisis intensify in the United States and across the globe, Landsat 9 will provide data and imagery to help make science-based decisions on key issues including water use, wildfire impacts, coral reef degradation, glacier and ice-shelf retreat, and tropical deforestation.”
The first Landsat satellite launched in 1972. Since then, NASA has always kept a Landsat in orbit to collect images of the physical material covering our planet’s surface and changes to land usage. Those images allow researchers to monitor phenomena including agricultural productivity, forest extent and health, water quality, coral reef habitat health, and glacier dynamics.
“The Landsat mission is like no other,” said Karen St. Germain, director of the Earth Science Division at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “For nearly 50 years, Landsat satellites observed our home planet, providing an unparalleled record of how its surface has changed over timescales from days to decades. Through this partnership with USGS, we’ve been able to provide continuous and timely data for users ranging from farmers to resource managers and scientists. This data can help us understand, predict, and plan for the future in a changing climate.”
Landsat 9 joins its sister satellite, Landsat 8, in orbit. Working in tandem, the two satellites will collect images spanning the entire planet every eight days.
“Landsat 9 will be our new eyes in the sky when it comes to observing our changing planet,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for science at NASA. “Working in tandem with the other Landsat satellites, as well as our European Space Agency partners who operate the Sentintel-2 satellites, we are getting a more comprehensive look at Earth than ever before. With these satellites working together in orbit, we’ll have observations of any given place on our planet every two days. This is incredibly important for tracking things like crop growth and helping decision makers monitor the overall health of Earth and its natural resources.”
The instruments aboard Landsat 9 – the Operational Land Imager 2 (OLI-2) and the Thermal Infrared Sensor 2 (TIRS-2) – measure 11 wavelengths of light reflected or radiated off Earth’s surface, in the visible spectrum as well as other wavelengths beyond what our eyes can detect. As the satellite orbits, these instruments will capture scenes across a swath of 115 miles (185 kilometers). Each pixel in these images represents an area about 98 feet (30 meters) across, about the size of a baseball infield. At that high a resolution, resource managers will be able to identify most crop fields in the United States.
“Launches are always exciting, and today was no exception,” said Jeff Masek, NASA Landsat 9 project scientist. “But the best part for me, as a scientist, will be when the satellite starts delivering the data that people are waiting for, adding to Landsat’s legendary reputation in the data user community.”
The USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, processes and stores data from the instruments, continuously adding that information to the five decades of data from all of the Landsat satellites.
All Landsat images and the embedded data are free and publicly available, a policy that has resulted in more than 100 million downloads since its inception in 2008.
NASA manages the Landsat 9 mission. Teams from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, also built and tested the TIRS-2 instrument. NASA’s Launch Services Program, based at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida managed the launch of the mission. EROS will operate the mission and manage the ground system, including maintaining the Landsat archive. Ball Aerospace in Boulder, Colorado, built and tested the OLI-2 instrument. United Launch Alliance is the rocket provider for Landsat 9’s launch. Northrop Grumman in Gilbert, Arizona, built the Landsat 9 spacecraft, integrated it with instruments, and tested it.
#ESA; #EuropeNextGenerationMission; #EGSCC; #OPSSATSpaceLab
New York/Canadian-Media: A spacecraft with Europe’s next-generation mission control system has been successfully operated for the first time by European Space Agency (ESA), ESA reports said.
In the years to come the ‘brain’ of all European spaceflight operations would be the powerful software, named the 'European Ground System - Common Core' (EGS-CC), with promising new possibilities for how future missions.
On 26 June 2021, ESA’s OPS-SAT space lab became the first spacecraft to be monitored and controlled using the EGS-CC, developed by ESA – proving that this software of the future is ready to be extended across current and future missions flown from Europe.
European National Space Agencies and space industry, and will be freely available to all European entities, ensuring the continents’ place at the competitive forefront of space exploration.
Space lab tests Europe’s new brain
ESA’s OPS-SAT ‘Space Lab’ is a CubeSat developed with the sole intention of being a guinea pig for new operational software, too risky to test on other missions. And it is open for the public to experiment with!
“During ESA’s recent test, the space lab became the first ever mission to fly with Europe’s new space brain,” explained Dave Evans, OPS-SAT Mission Manager.
OPS-SAT: ESA’s flying lab, open to all
#GlobgalWarming; #ESA; #CarbonBudget; #CarbonStocks; #CarbonCounting
New York/Canadian-Media: A target for global warming not to exceed 1.5°C was adopted by the Paris Agreement setting a limit on the additional carbon we can add to the carbon budget, European Space Agency (ESA) reported.
Counting Carbon. Image credit: ESA
Only around 17 percent of the carbon budget is now left, which counts to about 10 years at current emission rates.
After each country reports its annual greenhouse gas emissions to the United Nations (UN), scientists then use the bottom-up approach to calculate the carbon budget by setting these emissions against estimates of the carbon absorbed by Earth’s natural carbon sinks.
About a quarter of our greenhouse gas emissions directly relies on the way we utilize our lands. Forests, being the largest store of carbon on the land, fire acts as a pipeline for carbon to pass from the land to the atmosphere, where as ocean color serves as an important carbon sink.
ESA’s Regional Carbon Cycle Analysis and Processes (RECCAP) project is using this information to reconcile the differences between the bottom-up and top-down approaches.
Phase 2 (RECCAP-2) is coordinated by the Global Carbon Project, and collects and synthesizes regional data for 14 large regions of the globe subject to sufficient harmonization to enable scaling these budgets to the globe and to compare different regions.
Combining these observations with atmospheric and biophysical computer models to deduce carbon fluxes at the surface not only improves the precision of each greenhouse gas budget but also helps separate natural fluxes from agricultural and fossil fuel emissions. This work will help us gauge whether we can stay within the 1.5°C carbon budget, or if more warming is in store.
#EuropeanSpaceAgency; #Peru; #EarthFromSpace; #UNESCO; #WorldHeritageSite
Peru/Canadian-Media: The commercial and industrial centre of Peru, Lima is located on the mostly flat terrain in the Peruvian coastal plain, within the valleys of the Chillón, Rímac and Lurín rivers. The city is bordered on the east by the foothills of the Andes Mountains and on the west by the Pacific Ocean, https://phys.org/news.
Lima can be seen directly on the south bank of the Rímac River, which flows for around 200 km through the Lima Region, before emptying near Callao – a seaside city and port in the Lima metropolitan area (the largest metropolitan area of Peru).
Although Lima is located at a tropical latitude, the cool offshore Humboldt Current (also known as the Peru Current) produces a year-round temperate climate. The cooling of the coastal air mass produces thick cloud cover throughout winter and the dense sea mist, known locally as garúa, often rolls in to blanket the city. In this image, captured on 20 April 2020, several cloud formations can be seen dotted along the coast.
Callao is Peru’s main seaport and home to its main airport, Jorge Chávez International Airport. Several small boats and vessels can be seen near the port. Callao has several islands: San Lorenzo Island (currently used as a military base), El Frontón (a former high security prison), the Cavinzas Islands, and the Palomino Islands, where numerous sea lions and sea birds live.
The Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission consists of a pair of twin satellites that orbit Earth once every 100 minutes, together imaging a path on Earth’s surface 580 kilometres wide. The satellites observe in 13 spectral bands – from visible to infrared light – giving various perspectives on land and vegetation. This means that the mission can be used to retrieve a wealth of different information about Earth’s surface.
#ESA; #FeelTheForce; #HigherFidelityTesting; #BiAxialTesting; #EuropeanSpacecraft
New York/Canadian-Media: Going to space equals stress. As launcher propellant tanks are filled with fuel, or spacecraft structural panels experience the strain of orbital ascent, they undergo major force loading in multiple directions at once, the European Space Agency (ESA) reported.
Image: Feel the Force pillar. Image credit: ESA
ESA’s new Bi-Axial Test Facility – installed at the Agency’s Materials and Electrical Components Laboratory at its ESTEC technical centre in the Netherlands – replicates the bi-directional application of load, allowing higher-fidelity testing of candidate materials for space missions.
“This is a new add-on to our existing Instron hydraulic test system, which is able to apply up to 250 kilonewtons of force in a single direction,” explains ESA materials engineer Donato Girolamo, who commissioned the design of the new facility to fulfill space material testing requirements.
Such bi-axial testing is especially valuable for composite structures, widely used in space, which can possess differing material properties along different directions.
The custom-made tooling for the new facility was designed and built by Enduteq in the Netherlands.
The Bi-Axial Test Facility will begin by investigating the performance of solid rocket motor cases. It would also be suited to testing materials making up structural panels, as well as those for pressure chambers of all kinds, from propellant tanks to crewed modules.
“This expansion of our capabilities allows us to reproduce the real load conditions facing our test materials and structures more closely than ever,” remarks Tommaso Ghidini, heading ESA’s Structures, Mechanisms and Materials Division.