ICCARS is a NASA funded STEM education program for grade 8-12 teachers and students. Students and Teachers will have a working understanding of the science behind global climate change and its relationship to human activity, in particular its relationship to land-use and land-cover (LULC) changes on multiple scales through NASA data products and models. Wayne RESA and the Institute for Geospatial Research and Education (IGRE) at Eastern Michigan University are the program developers.
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Don't Forget Why NASA is Funding This Project
NASA conducts its work in four principal organizations, called mission directorates:
Aeronautics: pioneers and proves new flight technologies that improve our ability to explore and which have practical applications on Earth.
Science: explores the Earth, solar system and universe beyond; charts the best route of discovery; and reaps the benefits of Earth and space exploration for society.
Space Operations: provides critical enabling technologies for much of the rest of NASA through the space shuttle, the International Space Station and flight support.
The Science Mission Directorate (SMD) engages the Nation’s science community, sponsors scientific research, and develops and deploys satellites and probes in collaboration with NASA’s partners around the world to answer fundamental questions requiring the view from and into space. SMD seeks to understand the origins, evolution, and destiny of the universe and to understand the nature of the strange phenomena that shape it. SMD also seeks to understand:
the nature of life in the universe and what kinds of life may exist beyond Earth;
the solar system, both scientifically and in preparation for human exploration; and
the Sun and Earth, changes in the Earth-Sun system, and the consequences of the Earth-Sun relationship for life on Earth.
The Science Mission Directorate sponsors research that both enables, and is enabled by, NASA's exploration activities. The SMD portfolio is contributing to NASA’s achievement of the Vision for Space Exploration by striving to:
Understand the history of Mars and the formation of the solar system. By understanding the formation of diverse terrestrial planets (with atmospheres) in the solar system, researchers learn more about Earth’s future and the most promising opportunities for habitation beyond our planet. For example, differences in the impacts of collisional processes on Earth, the Moon, and Mars can provide clues about differences in origin and evolution of each of these bodies.
Search for Earth-like planets and habitable environments around other stars. SMD pursues multiple research strategies with the goal of developing effective astronomically-detectable signatures of biological processes. The study of the Earth-Sun system may help researchers identify atmospheric biosignatures that distinguish Earth-like (and potentially habitable) planets around nearby stars. An understanding of the origin of life and the time evolution of the atmosphere on Earth may reveal likely signatures of life on extrasolar planets.
Explore the solar system for scientific purposes while supporting safe robotic and human exploration of space. For example, large-scale coronal mass ejections from the Sun can cause potentially lethal consequences for improperly shielded human flight systems, as well as some types of robotic systems. SMD’s pursuit of interdisciplinary scientific research focus areas will help predict potentially harmful conditions in space and protect NASA’s robotic and human explorers.
NASA has defined a set of space and Earth Science questions that can best be addressed using the Agency’s unique capabilities. NASA works with the broader scientific community, considers national initiatives, and the results of decade-long surveys by the National Research Council in defining these questions.
See also the Science Strategy section for more information about how NASA Science is pursuing these questions.