Latest in Science

Image credit:

NASA's drought-predicting satellite is almost ready to begin work

19 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Sponsored Links

According to environmentalist Lester Brown, droughts are going to be increasingly prevalent over the next few years. At the same time that he was making these claims, however, NASA was activating a spacecraft that it's hoped will do something about that. The Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellite is designed to orbit the Earth, measuring global moisture levels in soil.


With that data, the agency expects to predict what regions are at the highest risk of both droughts and flooding. Now that SMAP has unfurled its 20-foot-wide dome antenna, scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory will spend the next few days checking if the hardware is ready to begin its three-year mission. If all goes well, then the craft will be able to snap 620 mile slices of the Earth for each scan it takes. Those with long memories will recall that Europe's space agency has a similar project, SMOS, which recently celebrated its fifth birthday keeping an eye on the planet's hydration.

Source: NASA
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
19 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Popular on Engadget

Netflix is giving Line's cute mascots their own animated series

Netflix is giving Line's cute mascots their own animated series

View
Sling TV's Cloud DVR can finally record ESPN

Sling TV's Cloud DVR can finally record ESPN

View
'Forza Horizon 4' is getting a 72-car battle royale mode

'Forza Horizon 4' is getting a 72-car battle royale mode

View
What's coming to Netflix in January: hello 'Sabrina,' goodbye 'Friends'

What's coming to Netflix in January: hello 'Sabrina,' goodbye 'Friends'

View
The Game Awards will run a 48-hour demo 'festival'

The Game Awards will run a 48-hour demo 'festival'

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr