NASA’s Terra program is a series of satellites that collect data on Earth’s atmosphere, land, and oceans. The first of these satellites, Terra, was launched in December 1999. Since then, Terra has provided scientists with invaluable information on topics such as climate change, air pollution, and natural disasters.
Terra is equipped with a range of instruments that allow it to collect data in different parts of the electromagnetic spectrum. Some of these instruments include the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR), and the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER). Together, these instruments provide scientists with high-resolution images of Earth’s surface, as well as detailed information about the composition of its atmosphere.
Over the years, Terra has been used to study a wide range of environmental issues. For example, Terra data has been used to track the melting of polar ice caps, monitor deforestation in the Amazon rainforest, and measure the levels of pollutants in the air. Terra data has also been used to help predict and respond to natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods, and wildfires.
Overall, the Terra program has been a vital tool for scientists studying the Earth’s environment. Its sophisticated instrumentation and long-term data collection have provided us with unprecedented insights into our planet’s systems and helped us address some of the most pressing environmental challenges of our time.