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Earth Science Division Highlights for February 11, 2013

• NASA Ames begins use of Dragon Eye UAS

NASA Ames received official approval from NASA HQ on February 6 to acquire approximately 70 Dragon Eye unpiloted aircraft from the US Marine Corps through GSA.  The first mission for the small, hand launched Dragon Eye will be to acquire measurements ofvolcanic plumes in Costa Rice to validate SO2 data products from the ASTER instrument.   The Airborne Science group at Ames conducted a flight readiness review for in early February for that mission scheduled for next month.  Additional test flights of the Dragon Eye will be conducted in DOE restricted airspace near Livermore next week.

Pete Worden and Dave Korsmeyer  visited the facility at Ames housing the Dragon Eyes on February 12 and expressed their support for the acquisition and use of the platforms. 

• ATTREX mission completes its first two science flights

The Airborne Tropical Tropopause Experiment, a NASA Earth Venture 1 mission,  completed its first two science flights from DFRC in early February.   The third flight of six anticipated this month is scheduled for February 14.   The flight from Dryden are sampling the troposphere/stratosphere boundary in the mid-Pacific. 

• Airborne Science director visits Ames

Bruce Tagg, the director of the Airborne Science Program at NASA HQ and his deputy, Randy Albertson (NASA/DFRC) reviewed airborne science activities at Ames February 5-7.  The visit included meetings with Pete Worden and Col. Steve Butow, Wing Commander of the Califronia Air National Guard 129th .  Ames provides support to Airborne Science through mission management, IT systems for program and mission management, and support for integration and engineering across the NASA Science aircraft fleet.  Tagg expressed appreciation and support for the work at Ames at the conclusion of his visit.

California Biodiversity Council meeting

 Jay Skiles, as a program associate for the biodiversity element in the Applied Sciences Program at NASAHQ was the “official” NASA representative.  Council members, all senior managers in federal and state agencies operating in California and with shared or overlapping responsibilities for maintaining biodiversity and sustainable ecosystems, expressed appreciation for NASA’s participation and look forward to developing projects of mutual interest in ecosystem modeling, information processing, and climate projections.

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Last Updated: Feb. 11, 2013
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