NASA Earth Science
Open-Source Science Initiative
NASA is making a long-term commitment through its Open-Source Science Initiative to building an inclusive open science community committed to sharing software, data, and knowledge as early as possible in the scientific process.
Equity and Environmental Justice
NASA‘s Earth Science Division is committed to ensuring that the investment the nation has made in NASA satellites and science benefits people across the U.S. and helps them make informed decisions about the very real environmental justice challenges they face in their communities.
Seeing Earth from Space
By the end of the decade, the five missions of NASA’s Earth System Observatory will be providing a holistic, 3D view of our planet from atmosphere to bedrock.
Online Earth science resources enable everyone to track sea level rise and wildfires.
NASA at Your Table
Find out how NASA Earth Science helps in production and management of the resources behind the food and drink that end up on tables around the world.
NASA Monitors Sea Level Rise
Earth’s global sea levels are rising at an accelerating rate. This special feature package of stories and videos explains those changes, and shows how NASA tracks the causes and helps communities manage the impact.
NASA Earth System Observatory
NASA is developing the Earth System Observatory, the core of which is five satellite missions providing critical data on climate change, severe weather and other natural hazards, wildfires, and global food production.
These observations will address the most pressing questions about our changing planet, as identified in the 2017 Earth Science Decadal Survey by the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine. The core of the Observatory will focus on five areas: Aerosols; Cloud, Convection, and Precipitation; Mass Change; Surface Biology and Geology; and Surface Deformation and Change. Consistent with the Academies’ recommendations, NASA will augment the core with competitively selected Earth Explorer missions, to infuse innovation and deliver additional high-priority observations.
Each of the missions will deliver important environmental measurements. Taken together, as a single Observatory, NASA will have a holistic, 3D view of Earth to better understand how our planet’s complex systems work together and improve our capability to predict how our climate may change. NASA’s Open Source Science strategy is the key to bringing the data from these missions together into a single observatory to help understand the earth as a system and accelerate our ability to use this understanding. These observations will better inform decision-makers on how our planet is changing, with greater precision on previously unimaginable scales – from entire continents down to individual trees, from atmosphere to bedrock.
Learn more about NASA’s Earth System Observatory.
NASA Earth Science Division Response to COVID-19
During the pandemic, NASA Earth Science Division (ESD) has continued to collect Earth-observing data, capturing the changes in our planet’s systems, particularly in response to changes in human behavior during societal distancing and related shutdowns.
Read more about ESD’s scientific data and research related to the pandemic, and see the changes on NASA’s COVID-19 dashboard, and on a global dashboard produced by NASA, ESA and JAXA.
About NASA Earth Science
NASA’s Earth Science Division (ESD) missions help us to understand our planet’s interconnected systems, from a global scale down to minute processes.
ESD delivers the technology, expertise, global observations, and applications that help us map the myriad connections between our planet’s vital processes and the climate effects of ongoing natural and human-caused changes.
Using observations from satellites, instruments on the International Space Station, airplanes, balloons, ships and on land, ESD researchers collect data about the science of our planet’s atmospheric motion and composition; land cover, land use and vegetation; ocean currents, temperatures and upper-ocean life; and ice on land and sea. These data sets, which cover even the most remote areas of Earth, are freely and openly available to anyone.
ESD offers end-to-end development, launch, data collection, analysis, and application of its missions, including those with partners in U.S. and international government, and the private sector. ESD also sponsors research and extends science and technology education to learners of all ages, inspiring the next generation of explorers.