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The Earth Observer: Jan - Feb, 2024

In This Issue

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  • Feature Articles
  • NASA’s Earth Science Technology Office Celebrates 25 Years07
  • Seeing “Through the Eyes of NASA” at the 2023 AGU Annual Meeting12
  • Meeting Summaries
  • Summary of the 2023 GRACE Follow-On Science Team Meeting19
  • In the News
  • NASA Collaborates in an International Air Quality Study27
  • OpenET Study Helps Water Managers and Farmers Put NASA Data to Work28
  • SWOT Satellite Catches Coastal Flooding During California Storms30
  • Also Included in this Issue
  • In Memoriam—Dr. Richard S. Stolarski05
  • NASA Earth Science in the News31
  • Earth Science Meeting and Workshop Calendar11

The Editor's Corner

Steve Platnick, EOS Senior Project Scientist

The Earth Observer continues to work on its transition to our new website. Implementing a completely new set-up is not without challenges and has taken a bit longer than anticipated. The plan is to have the site fully operational soon – current estimate is no earlier than (NET) June 2024. In the meantime, to reduce a gap between our continuous 35-year run of PDF issues and the rollout of the new website, the newsletter team decided to release one final PDF issue. To learn more about the status of The Earth Observer’s transition to online publication, see the Update from the Executive Editor on page 33 of this issue. The launch of the new website for The Earth Observer is far from the only Earth Science launch we have to discuss. In our last issue we announced that the Plankton, Aerosol, Cloud, ocean Ecosystem (PACE) mission had successfully launched from Kennedy Space Center in the early morning of February 8, 2024. Just 63 days later, data from NASA’s newest Earth-observing satellite became available to the public – see Figure. These data will extend and improve upon NASA’s 20+ years of global satellite observation of our living oceans, atmospheric aerosols, and clouds, and initiate an advanced set of climate-relevant data records. Ultimately, PACE is the first mission to provide measurements that will enable prediction of the “boom–bust” cycle of fisheries, the appearance of harmful algae, and other factors that affect commercial and recreational industries. PACE also observes aerosols that influence air quality as well as the absorption and reflection of sunlight by both aerosols and clouds, which in turn impacts the radiation budget.