News

Optical Engineer Aboubakar Traore looks over the Doppler Aerosol Wind Lidar (DAWN) before it travels from Hampton, Virginia, to Palmdale, California. Credits: NASA/David C. Bowman

Going Where the Wind Takes It

Developed at NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, DAWN uses laser pulses to take highly accurate measurements of vector wind speed and...

Read More:
A large iceberg near Thule Air Base, Greenland. Credits: NASA

NASA's Greenland Mission Still Surprises in Year Four

Only seven months after NASA's Oceans Melting Greenland (OMG) mission wrapped its last field campaign on the world's largest island, an OMG crew is ba...

Read More:
A large iceberg near Thule Air Base, Greenland. Credits: NASA

NASA's Greenland Mission Still Surprises in Year Four

Only seven months after NASA's Oceans Melting Greenland (OMG) mission wrapped its last field campaign on the world's largest island, an OMG crew is ba...

Read More:
Just 114 miles from the newly-found Hiawatha impact crater under the ice of northwest Greenland, lies a possible second impact crater. The 22-mile wide feature would be the second crater found under an ice sheet, and if confirmed, would be the 22nd-largest crater on Earth. A NASA-led team discovered the feature using satellite data of the surface of the Greenland Ice Sheet as well as radar measurements from NASA’s airborne campaign Operation IceBridge. Credits: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center/ Jefferson

NASA Finds Possible Second Impact Crater Under Greenland Ice

A NASA glaciologist has discovered a possible second impact crater buried under more than a mile of ice in northwest Greenland. This follows the find...

Read More:
Thwaites Glacier. Credits: NASA/OIB/Jeremy Harbeck

Huge Cavity in Antarctic Glacier Signals Rapid Decay

A gigantic cavity — two-thirds the area of Manhattan and almost 1,000 feet (300 meters) tall — growing at the bottom of Thwaites Glacier in West A...

Read More:
An image of the Camp Fire on Nov. 8 from the Landsat 8 satellite. Credits: USGS/NASA/Joshua Stevens

NASA Mobilizes to Aid California Fires Response

For the past two weeks NASA scientists and satellite data analysts have been working every day producing maps and damage assessments that can be used ...

Read More:
The Hiawatha impact crater is covered by the Greenland Ice Sheet, which flows just beyond the crater rim, forming a semi-circular edge. Part of this edge (top of photo) and a tongue of ice that breaches the crater’s rim are shown in this photo taken during a NASA Operation IceBridge flight on April 17. Credits: NASA/John Sonntag

International Team, NASA Make Unexpected Discovery Under...

An international team of researchers, including a NASA glaciologist, has discovered a large meteorite impact crater hiding beneath more than a half-mi...

Read More:

About the Airborne Science Program

The Airborne Science Program within the Earth Science Division is responsible for providing aircraft systems that further science and advance the use of satellite data. The primary objectives of this program are to:

  • Satellite Calibration and Validation
  • Provide platforms to enable essential calibration measurements for the Earth observing satellites, and the validation of data retrieval algorithms.

  • Support New Sensor Development
  • Provide sub-orbital flight opportunities to test and refine new instrument technologies/algorithms, and reduce risk prior to committing sensors for launch into space.

  • Process Studies
  • Obtain high-resolution temporal and spatial measurements of complex local processes, which can be coupled to global satellite observations for a better understanding of the complete Earth system.

  • Develop the Next-Generation of Scientists and Engineers
  • Foster the development of our future workforce with the hands-on involvement of graduate students, and young scientists/engineers in all aspects of ongoing Earth science investigations.

    To meet these observing objectives ASP maintains and operates a suite of sustained, ongoing platforms and sensors on which investigators can rely from year to year. From these known capabilities the Science Mission Directorate can develop observing strategies. However, an ongoing capability will be resource-constrained and eventually technology-constrained, so that not all observing requirements will be met with the limited core capability. Therefore the program facilitates access to other platforms or sensors on a funds-available, as-needed basis, to accommodate unique and/or occasional requirements. The Program also looks for new or evolving technologies to demonstrate their applicability for Earth science. Depending on the success of the demonstrations and the observing needs, the core capability is expected to evolve and change over time. The speed and extent of change will be balanced against the need for established, known capabilities for long-term planning.