NASA Releases Video Of How CO2 Affects The Earth's AtmosphereBy Emily Marks, UniversityHerald Reporter
NASA has released a video showing how carbon dioxide spreads on the Earth's atmosphere. The 3D video shows how the gas moves through the sky.
The Verge reported that the video was created by NASA using satellite measurements of carbon dioxide to demonstrate how the greenhouse gas moves through the atmosphere. In just a small span of time, the carbon dioxide concentrations can be seen swirling around and going up to the Northern Hemisphere.
The data is taken from one of NASA's satellites, the Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2). It was launched in 2014 to measure carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
The data covers one year, from Sep. 2014 to Sep. 2015. The footage was then combined with a high-resolution weather model to give a 3D view.
In a post on its official website, NASA revealed how scientists have tracked the rising concentration of heat-trapping carbon dioxide for decades. They previously used ground-based sensors.
The new visualization is generated by Global Modeling and Assimilation Office at the space agency's Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland. The 3D video featured the complex patterns of how carbon dioxide increases and decreases in the atmosphere as well as how it moves around the Earth.
It was noted that rising concentrations of carbon dioxide has caused global warming. This rise is mainly due to the burning of fossil fuels for energy.
The video shows how scientists are faring in terms of understanding the processes that control the Earth's climate. It also aims to answer the questions of how much carbon dioxide stays in the atmosphere and how long it usually stays there.
"We can't measure the flux directly at high resolution across the entire globe," Lesley Ott, a carbon cycle scientist at NASA Goddard and a member of the OCO-2 science team, said. "We are trying to build the tools needed to provide an accurate picture of what's happening in the atmosphere and translating that to an accurate picture of what's going on with the flux. There's still a long way to go, but this is a really important and necessary step in that chain of discoveries about carbon dioxide."