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Highlights Archive
Earth Science Division Highlights for week ending March 21, 2007

UASs and disaster response capabilities are cover story for Unmanned Systems

An article about the use of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) in helping to combat forest fires appeared in the current issue of Unmanned Systems (vol. 25, no. 2, Mar/Apt 2007). “Ikhana UAV to See First Action this Forest Fire Season” details the development of the UAS (manufactured by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc.) and NASA's use of its predecessor, the Altair, in assisting disaster response agencies during last year's Esperanza Fire in Southern California. Vince Ambrosia (CSUMB/SGE), project principal investigator, was interviewed for the article, as was Bruce Cobleigh (Ikhana Project Manager at DFRC), and Everett Hinkley, Liason of Special Projects for the Forest Service's Remote Sensing Applications Center and a co-investigator in the Wildfire Research and Applications Partnership (WRAP). The cover features an image of the Altair in flight during the wildfire mission campaigns in 2006.

The cover of a recent issue of the Journal of Geography (Vol. 105, No. 6, November / December 2006), featured an image collected from the NASA-Ames developed AMS-WILDFIRE scanner during the October UAS flights over the Esperanza Fire in southern California. The inside cover detailed the WRAP-led mission to collect data in support of fire management activities on the devastating wildfire.  (POC: Vince Ambrosia, 4-6565,


Outreach Activities

Tony Strawa (SGG) gave talks about climate change to two groups of high school students last week. Strawa was the keynote speaker at 'Meet a Scientist', an event held at the Sonora Opera House that drew an audience of 60 students from 4 schools. Strawa also spoke before a youth leadership group called Safe Place Community Outreach, which met at the Mt. Hamilton Grange in San Jose. About 45 students attended. The event was sponsored by the Bill Williams Center, an organization that focuses on giving high school students leadership opportunities while doing community service. For more information about the center, visit the website: (POC: Tony Strawa, 4-3437, )

Friedemann Freund spoke before the Bay Area Astronomy Club, Tri-Valley Stargazers, March 16, in Livermore , CA . His talk, “All those Organics up in the Night Sky,” focused on the organics associated with the dust in the interstellar medium. (POC: Friedemann Freund, 4-5183, )

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