Earth  ID: 3996

NASA Earth Observing Fleet including GPM

There is a newer version of this story located here:
A newer version of this visualization can be found here.

This animation shows the orbits of NASA's current (as of January 2014) fleet of Earth remote sensing observatories. The satellites include components of the A-Train (Aqua, Aura, CloudSat, CALIPSO), two satellites launched in 2011 (Aquarius, Suomi NPP), and eleven others (ACRIMSAT, SORCE, GRACE, Jason 1 and 2, Landsat 7, Landsat 8, GPM, QuikSCAT, TRMM, and EO-1). These satellites measure tropical rainfall, solar irradiance, clouds, sea surface height, ocean salinity, and other aspects of the global environment. Together, they provide a picture of the Earth as a system.

This is an update of visualization #4070. The orbits are based on orbital elements with epochs in April of 2013. The visualization spans twenty-nine hours, from 04:10 UT on April 14, 2013 to 09:24 UT on Aril 15, 2013. Some simulated orbits where added, such as GPM, as they had not launched at the time these visualizations were created.

Two versions of this visualization are provided. The first colors the orbits blue except that TRMM is colored green and GPM is colored red. The second visualization colors all of the orbits blue.

Newer Versions

Visualization Credits

Greg Shirah (NASA/GSFC): Lead Animator
Ernie Wright (USRA): Animator
Alex Kekesi (Global Science and Technology, Inc.): Animator
Matthew R. Radcliff (USRA): Producer
Ryan Fitzgibbons (USRA): Producer
Please give credit for this item to:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio

Short URL to share this page:

LDCM: Landsat Data Continuity Mission

Data Used:
CelesTrak Spacecraft Orbit Ephemeris
Terra and Aqua/MODIS/Blue Marble: Next Generation also referred to as: BMNG
The Blue Marble data is courtesy of Reto Stockli (NASA/GSFC).
GEOS-5 Atmospheric Model on the Cubed-Sphere also referred to as: GEOS-5 Cubed-Sphere
The model is the GEOS-5 atmospheric model on the cubed-sphere, run at 14-km global resolution for 30-days. GEOS-5 is described here and the cubed-sphere work is described here
Note: While we identify the data sets used in these visualizations, we do not store any further details nor the data sets themselves on our site.

This item is part of this series:
GPM Animations

DLESE >> Atmospheric science
SVS >> Landsat
SVS >> Simulation
SVS >> Spacecraft
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Atmosphere
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Atmosphere >> Clouds
SVS >> Orbit
SVS >> Hyperwall
SVS >> Aquarius
SVS >> Calipso
SVS >> Cloudsat
SVS >> Aura
SVS >> Earth >> Satellites >> Earth Observing Fleet
NASA Science >> Earth

GCMD keywords can be found on the Internet with the following citation: Olsen, L.M., G. Major, K. Shein, J. Scialdone, S. Ritz, T. Stevens, M. Morahan, A. Aleman, R. Vogel, S. Leicester, H. Weir, M. Meaux, S. Grebas, C.Solomon, M. Holland, T. Northcutt, R. A. Restrepo, R. Bilodeau, 2013. NASA/Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Earth Science Keywords. Version