NASA launches SMAP satellite to observe soil moisture

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has launched Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellite to observe soil moisture.
It was launched from the Delta 2 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellite

  • SMAP satellite is three-year mission which will measure the amount of moisture in soil.
  • The satellite is built to measure moisture in the top 2 inches (5 centimeters) of soil. It can measure the moisture content of the soil from its spot in orbit about 426 miles (685 kilometers) above Earth’s surface.
  • SMAP satellite will produce high-resolution global maps from space and data collected from it will help scientists to monitor droughts and improve flood forecasts.
  • NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory located in Pasadena, California is responsible for SMAP satellite project management, system engineering, mission operations and the ground data system.
  • SMAP is going to take real-time measurements that will be incorporated into forecasts and replace current drought mapping and flash flood guidance mechanism as it issued based on computer modeling.
  • Applications: It will help to monitor drought, predict floods, assist crop productivity, weather forecasting and linking water, Energy and Carbon Cycles.




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