NASA

GIFs: Spanish Peaks Turn Tan (by NASA)

Michael Animation, Photo March 5, 2017 Leave a reply

来自非洲撒哈拉大沙漠的沙尘千里迢迢洒在了西班牙的雪山上,山舞银蛇的景象不再,在滑雪爱好者眼中尤其大煞风景。【原文见NASA Earth Observatory

Two days after it was lofted into the air over the Sahara Desert on February 20, dust blew north into Spain and Europe. As dust particles settled down en masse on the snow-covered peaks of Spain’s Sierra Nevadas, they left the mountains a very different color. [GIF shows Feb. 18 – Feb. 27, 2017. Original post on NASA Earth Observatory]

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Perspective B: Climate Ain’t A Joke (, Politics Might Be)

Michael Animation, Data & Graphics, Photo, Video September 22, 2016 Leave a reply

Earlier this year, I dived into the New York City public school application mechanism and studied everything inside out, upside down. By May, my family got the letter from the Department of Education notifying us that my son got into our dream school. And his first couple of weeks in this school have been nothing but perfect.

Now this is about something that is also close to my heart but is way out of my control, or out of control by our species at large. (Someone correct me if I am wrong , please!) I have also studied the question of climate crisis for a number of years and it is worrisome, and alarming to be precise.

First, take a look at the 20-year difference between these what I’d call heat maps, color coding the temperatures’ anomalies compared against the 1951-1980 average. In August 20 years ago, only Antarctica was boiling like a hot pot. This past month, the world map looks as orange (and red) like a U.S. presidential nominee. I don’t think there’s anything else that needs to be said about such a drastic change in just a generation. (For more about the maps and to generate your own months or versions, click on the links on “NASA” in captions.)

Anomaly map of world temperatures in August 1996 vs. 1951-1980 (via NASA)

 

Anomaly map of world temperatures in August 2016 vs. 1951-1980 (via NASA)

Anomaly map of world temperatures in August 2016 vs. 1951-1980 (via NASA)

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Floods along the Yangtze 2016, 2011

Michael Animation, Data & Graphics, Photo August 8, 2016 Leave a reply
March 27 vs July 28, 2016 along the Yangtze River

March 27 vs July 28, 2016 along the Yangtze River

以上是一组对比今年3月27日和7月28日长江中游沿岸以及洞庭、鄱阳两大湖水位变化的动图。如果两大湖春季的水位更接近正常的话,恐怕今年汛期的洪灾将更加惨烈。今年的洪灾已经造成了220亿美元的损失,也成为仅次于1998年洪灾的中国第二大最具破坏性的天气灾害事件,也是1980年有记录以来全球(美国以外)第五大最具破坏性的自然灾害事件(下图)。【NASA原文点这里

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GIF: Beetle Infestation Eats Up Forests in the Rockies

Michael Interactive, Photo May 18, 2016 Leave a reply

Another interesting bird’s-eye view of the wipe out of large forests in the Rocky Mountains, via NASA Earth Observatory:

In Colorado, severe beetle infestations showed up in lodgepole pine forests about 50 miles west of Boulder and Fort Collins around 2000. Over time, the affected area grew so that by 2011 the infestation had spread east to ponderosa pine forests that were much closer to the two cities.

In Colorado, severe beetle infestations showed up in lodgepole pine forests about 50 miles west of Boulder and Fort Collins around 2000. Over time, the affected area grew so that by 2011 the infestation had spread east to ponderosa pine forests that were much closer to the two cities.

A single pine bark beetle is about the size of a grain of rice. But when the beetle population swells, it can have a major impact on forest health. And that’s exactly what has been happening across the Rocky Mountains over the past decade.

GIF: Floods Seen From Space

Michael Photo May 9, 2016 Leave a reply

Floods can be devastating, and they can be surreal too, seen from space. This below, thanks to NASA Earth Observatory, shows a flood event in 2011 that looks like a giant bulldozer having widened the whole James River, meanwhile smoothing out all the twists and turns along the way.

A tributary of the Missouri River, the James River experienced significant flooding in the spring of 2011. In early June 2011, the river was high enough to fill the river valley near the town of Mitchell, South Dakota.

A tributary of the Missouri River, the James River experienced significant flooding in the spring of 2011. In early June 2011, the river was high enough to fill the river valley near the town of Mitchell, South Dakota.

And here is a scene on Missouri River, also seen from space:

By early June 2011, the Missouri River had risen enough to submerge normally dry land, including some agricultural land, west of Lewis and Clark Lake.

By early June 2011, the Missouri River had risen enough to submerge normally dry land, including some agricultural land, west of Lewis and Clark Lake.


Here are a bunch of floods in China over the years, and the river monsters were pretty horrific, visually:

Flood waters continue to rise on the Amur (Heilongjiang) River and its tributaries in northeast China and southeast Russia. The floods are affecting millions, forcing evacuations, closing ports, and claiming at least 85 lives. The floods are expected to peak in early September.

Flood waters continue to rise on the Amur (Heilongjiang) River and its tributaries in northeast China and southeast Russia. The floods are affecting millions, forcing evacuations, closing ports, and claiming at least 85 lives. The floods are expected to peak in early September.

Summer rains have swollen rivers throughout northeastern China, including the Songhua River. Water levels peaked in Harbin on August 27, 2013, and have remained high. The Songhua River is one of many tributaries of the Amur (Heilongjiang) River, which is experiencing its most severe floods in a century.

Summer rains have swollen rivers throughout northeastern China, including the Songhua River. Water levels peaked in Harbin on August 27, 2013, and have remained high. The Songhua River is one of many tributaries of the Amur (Heilongjiang) River, which is experiencing its most severe floods in a century.

The recent floods followed months of devastating drought, China Daily reported. Prior to the torrential rains, 3.5 million people endured water shortages. Although the rain brought much-needed moisture, it also brought deadly floods and landslides. As of June 28, nearly 100 people had died and about 27,000 homes had been destroyed.

The recent floods followed months of devastating drought, China Daily reported. Prior to the torrential rains, 3.5 million people endured water shortages. Although the rain brought much-needed moisture, it also brought deadly floods and landslides. As of June 28, nearly 100 people had died and about 27,000 homes had been destroyed.

Wow 360 Video: Falcon 9 Rocket Landing on Sea

Michael 360°, Interactive, Video April 30, 2016 Leave a reply

If you follow Elon Musk (no, we’re not talking Tesla here) and SpaceX, you’ve probably been impressed already by his NASA-like company’s milestone of landing a rocket successfully on a drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean. Now prepare to be impressed yet again [Click to watch, and click-hold and drag up/down/left/right to experience a 360-degree virtual reality playback]:

Heads up! 360 degree camera view of landing on the droneship

(On mobile? Just move your phone to find rocket. Desktop? Click and move screen.)

 

I also watched this on my iPhone, and you should do it on your phone too. If you just stumbled upon this 360 video post here for the first time on your phone, you may find it not rendering. Guess you will have to open up your Facebook app on your phone and find the video yourself, either search “SpaceX” or/and “360 degree camera view of landing on the droneship” or find limited inspiration from the SpaceX official post above. Or befriend me on Facebook and I will share/send along…

Here are some hilarious comments on the post:

Tim Baker Dear SpaceX , I’m still available for dusting, sweeping, mopping and outdoor yard care as well. But don’t ask me to clean Windows, cause I’m a Linux geek

Crouton Smodge My wife just told me that me and the rocket need to get a room… (I’m a bit obsessed with watching this…never gets old!)

 


For appetizers, below are some Vine and stuff:

墙内的盆友,我在秒拍上也有上传一个片段,点这里

GIF: Shrinking Lake Mead, Expanding Las Vegas

Michael Data & Graphics, Interactive, Photo April 11, 2016 Leave a reply
Lake Mead 1984-2016

Lake Mead 1984-2016, via NASA Earth Observatory

Lake Mead main body on Hoover Dam side, 1984-2016

Lake Mead main body on Hoover Dam side, 1984-2016

Las Vegas and Hoover Dam 1984-2016

Las Vegas and Hoover Dam 1984-2016

Lake Mead 2000-2015, via NASA

Lake Mead 2000-2015, via NASA

Lake Mead formed in 1930s following construction on the Hoover Dam along the Colorado River. At maximumcapacity, the reservoir would hold 36 trillion liters (9.3 trillion gallons); water in the vicinity of the dam would have an elevation of about 372 meters (1,220 feet) above sea level. In July 2000, the lake level was relatively high at 366 meters (1,200 feet). By July 2015, however, the level had dropped to 329 meters (1,078 feet).

Read full post at NASA Earth Observatory.