April 2012


Pine Island Glacier
Apr 19, 2012Landsat Shows West Antarctic Ice Shelves Tearing Apart at the Seams

A new study examining nearly 40 years of satellite imagery has revealed that the floating ice shelves of a critical portion of West Antarctica are steadily losing their grip on adjacent bay walls, potentially amplifying an already accelerating [...]

Pinnacle III reef in Discovery Bay
Jan 26, 2012Detecting Detrimental Change in Coral Reefs

Over dinner on R.V. Calypso while anchored on the lee side of Glover's Reef in Belize, Jacques Cousteau told Phil Dustan that he suspected humans were having a negative impact on coral reefs. Dustan—a young ocean ecologist who had worked in the [...]

Study Shows More Shrubbery in a Warming World
Dec 9, 2011Study Shows More Shrubbery in a Warming World

Scientists have used satellite data from NASA-built Landsat missions to confirm that more than 20 years of warming temperatures in northern Quebec, Canada, have resulted in an increase in the amount and extent of shrubs and grasses. "For the [...]

Kirtland's Warbler
Dec 9, 2011Satellite Data Shows that Kirtland’s Warblers Prefer Forests After Fire

Kirtland's warblers are an endangered species of lightweight little birds with bright yellow-bellies that summer in North America and winter in the Bahamas. But be it their winter or their summer home, a new study using data from NASA-built [...]

Drought map for 2007
Oct 10, 2011EarthSky Interview with Martha Anderson: Using Landsat to Monitor Water Use from Space

Martha Anderson, a research scientist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, uses images from the Landsat satellite program to monitor water use and drought on U.S. farms with pinpoint accuracy, even at the scale of individual fields. As water [...]

Yellowstone National Park
Aug 7, 2011Landsat Satellites Track Yellowstone’s Underground Heat

Yellowstone National Park sits on top of a vast, ancient, and still active volcano. Heat pours off its underground magma chamber, and is the fuel for Yellowstone's famous features—more than 10,000 hot springs, mud pots, terraces and geysers, [...]

Kelp forest in Santa Barbara Channel.
May 24, 2011Scientists Track Environmental Influences on Giant Kelp with Help from Landsat Data

Scientists at UC Santa Barbara have developed new methods for studying how environmental factors and climate affect giant kelp forest ecosystems at unprecedented spatial and temporal scales. The scientists merged data collected underwater by [...]

Part of Antarctica seen with the Landsat Image Mosaic of Antarctica.
Mar 22, 2011EarthSky Interview with Robert Bindschadler: First ever image mosaic of entire Antarctica detail

Scientists have created a mosaic of digital images collected from space showing the frozen continent of Antarctica—one of the most remote and least known places on Earth—in amazing detail for the first time ever. The mosaic is called LIMA, Read [...]

Yellowstone National Park and the Shoshone National Forest in Wyoming
Sep 8, 2010Landsat Reveal Surprising Connection Between Beetle Attacks, Wildfire

If your summer travels have taken you across the Rocky Mountains, you've probably seen large swaths of reddish trees dotting otherwise green forests. While it may look like autumn has come early to the mountains, evergreen trees don't change [...]

A portion of the map showing mangrove forests distributions of the world.
Aug 18, 2010Landsat Enables World’s Most Comprehensive Mangrove Assessment

The most definitive map of Earth’s mangrove forests has been created with Landsat data. A group of scientists, led by Chandra Giri from USGS-EROS, has calculated that approximately 53,190 square miles (137, 760 km²) of mangroves exists, 12.3 [...]