For six decades, NASA has used the vantage point of space to better understand our home planet and improve lives. A new interactive website called Space for U.S. highlights some of the many ways that NASA's Earth observations help people strengthen communities across the United States and make informed decisions about public health, disaster response and recovery, and environmental protection."Space for U.S." features 56 stories illustrating how NASA science has made an impact in every state in the nation as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and regions along the Atlantic, Pacific, Gulf of Mexico and the Great Lakes. You can browse stories by state or by topics such as animals, disasters, energy, health, land and water.
The Netherlands Space Office
The MUIIS project is one of the larger projects within the Geodata for Agriculture and Water Programme managed by NSO, where satellite data are used to contribute to food security. Around 250,000 small Ugandan farmers have registered for eligibility for a combination of agricultural advice information and financial services. After three years of a project status that included financial support by the Netherlands, the service will now continue under its own steam. MUIIS (Mobile User-owned ICT4 Ag-enabled Information Services) is a bundled service provision for small scale Ugandan farmers. They receive location-specific weather information and agricultural advice on their mobile phone as well as market information and drought insurance. In return, the farmers pay 20,000 Ugandan shillings (nearly 5 Euros) per growing season and they are included in a digital database with data about the farmer, the family, their possessions and production results. This information is important for financial service providers to improve their ability to estimate risk. This means the ‘profiled’ farmers can get a loan more easily, indirectly guaranteed by the Netherlands Rabobank Foundation.
Humans have been farming the African landscape for thousands of years, and not a great deal has changed over the many centuries. The slow rhythms of the agricultural seasons are what really drive this continent with more than 60 percent of the population working on the land. But change is afoot. Digital technology is introducing remarkable innovations to agriculture through accessible mechanization, improving farmers resilience to shocks like floods, and identifying land improvements. The mechanical power of the tractor revolutionized agriculture in the northern hemisphere, but most African farmers cannot afford to mechanize. Hello Tractor is providing farmers with an affordable alternative. Using a smartphone app, farmers can book tractor services like ploughing, hauling and planting. If they don’t have a smartphone, they can book through an agent who is paid via commission.
A powerful computational study of southern California seismic records has revealed detailed information about a plethora of previously undetected small earthquakes, giving a more precise picture about stress in the earth's crust. A new publicly available catalog of these findings will help seismologists better understand the stresses triggering the larger earthquakes that occasionally rock the region. "It's very difficult to unpack what triggers larger earthquakes because they are infrequent, but with this new information about a huge number of small earthquakes, we can see how stress evolves in fault systems," said Daniel Trugman, a post-doctoral fellow at Los Alamos National Laboratory and coauthor of a paper published in the journal Science today. "This new information about triggering mechanisms and hidden foreshocks gives us a much better platform for explaining how big quakes get started," Trugman said.
The State of Qatar is in a period of rapid development, modernization, and population growth. One of the most important factors influencing the long-term success and sustainability of future development is a comprehensive understanding of the region’s geologic regime, geotechnical conditions, natural resources, and environmental constraints. To obtain this understanding, the Ministry of Municipality and Environment (MME) of the State of Qatar has undertaken the Qatar Geological Mapping Project (QGMP). The project was developed with strategic foresight to compile and utilize existing subsurface data collected as part of its massive infrastructure and development projects. Recently, the MME, in consultation with Gannett Fleming Inc. (GF) and the United States Geological Survey (USGS) concluded the data collection and analysis phase (Phase I) of the two-phase QGMP. Phase I included: the development of a comprehensive geotechnical relational database (GRDB) populated with data digitized from more than 13,000 subsurface data logs; a detailed data quality analysis and distribution assessment; an extensive gap analysis and needs assessment; and careful design of the geologic mapping and subsurface investigation programs for the next phase of the project. The comprehensive GRDB will allow the MME, other government agencies, and their representatives, the ability to quickly search, query, and assess available geological and geotechnical data for use in site evaluations, project planning, and decision making.