A Legacy Continues with Landsat 9 Launch

Landsat image of ice caps in northern Savernaya Zemlya, Russian Arctic Islands (80 degrees N.). The scene shows zones of melting on the ice caps. The largest ice cap is about 80 km across. (Credit: Julian Dowdeswell, Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge, UK)

A new satellite will build on five decades of Earth observations

Landsat 9 is a partnership between NASA and USGS. The satellite will continue the Landsat program’s mission to capture repeat snapshots of Earth to monitor, understand and manage natural resources.  

RESTON, Va. (U.S. Geological Survey PR) — It’s 7 o’clock on a Tuesday morning. As you decide what kind of cereal to have, you accidentally splash a bit of almond milk onto your cotton pajama top. The last thing on your mind is a pair of satellites orbiting Earth over 400 miles away. 

And yet, those satellites are a part of your morning routine. They tell farmers how much water their almond trees need to thrive and reveal how soil once used for cotton is now used for fruit.  

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Small Satellite, Big Questions: CuPID CubeSat Will Get New Perspective on Sun-Earth Boundary

In April 2021, Connor O’Brien and Emil Atz complete “vibration testing” of CuPID to ensure it can withstand the space environment. (Credits: Brian Walsh)

By Alison Gold
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

GREENBELT, Md. — When you help build a satellite the size of a shoebox, you learn pretty much everything about it, says Emil Atz, a PhD candidate in Mechanical Engineering at Boston University. You learn how to write a proposal to fund it, how to place the screws that hold it together, how to test each instrument to ensure it functions properly.

And then you learn how to say goodbye.

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NASA Awards $500,000 in Break the Ice Lunar Challenge

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (NASA PR) — As NASA prepares to go to the Moon with the Artemis program, in-situ resource utilization is paramount, and there is no hotter commodity than water. To that effect, 13 teams from across the United States have won a share of a $500,000 prize in a competition that asked for ideas for digging and hauling icy Moon “dirt” – or regolith.

NASA’s Break the Ice Lunar Challenge opened in November 2020, incentivizing new approaches for excavating resources astronauts will need during long-duration missions on the Moon. Water, one of the most important resources, is trapped in icy regolith at the Moon’s poles, inside permanently dark and cold craters.

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