08:08 AM

Earth Science Picture of the Day Web Site Relaunched by USRA and NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) and the Universities Space Research Association (USRA) are pleased to announce the relaunch of the popular Earth Science Picture of the Day (EPOD) web site. This site (which can be accessed at epod.usra.edu) provides an impressive array of imagery highlighting the diverse physical processes and phenomena that shape our planet and emphasizes the critical role that those processes and phenomena play in our lives. For close to a decade the vibrant imagery available though the EPOD web site has served as an invaluable resource for scientists, educators, students, and the general public and has significantly enhanced both interest in and understanding of this critical scientific field. The EPOD web site enables the collection and archiving of a range of photos, imagery, graphics, and other artwork that illustrate features and physical processes within the Earth system. Posted photos, images, etc. are provided with brief explanatory captions and with links giving visitors access to further information. As an example, images currently available on the EPOD site:

  • Show that the differences in boat-created wakes can be used to determine not only the type and speed of the boat creating the wake but also underlying wave conditions in the body of water being travelled
  • Demonstrate the fact that the shape of the edges of a ship's wake can be used to prove that the earth is round, and
  • Illustrate the power of gales which, driven by low pressure systems that sweep over the Great Lakes during the autumn, can drive waves strong enough to overcome even very large and sturdy ships.

Dr. Don Kniffen, USRA's recently appointed Vice President for Science, lauded the web site's relaunch by noting that 'The Earth Science Picture of the Day is an invaluable tool for education and public outreach. The images available on this site are not only instructional, they are exciting and engaging and are a wonderful source of information on an area of science that is increasingly important to us all.' USRA and GSFC invite anyone interested to not only visit the site, but also encourage the community to contribute digital imagery, short captions, and relevant links.

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, in Greenbelt, Maryland, has been in operation for 50 years -- chartered on May 1, 1959. The Goddard Space Flight Center is a major U.S. laboratory for developing and operating unmanned scientific spacecraft. During the past 50-years, Goddard has been at the forefront in exploration, in technological achievement, in space science, and in studying the Earth as a system.

The Universities Space Research Association, founded in 1969, is a private, nonprofit consortium of 104 research universities offering doctoral degrees in space science and aeronautics disciplines. USRA's mission is to conduct leading-edge research, develop innovative technologies, promote space-related education and policy, and operate premier science/technology facilities by involving universities, private industry and government. USRA operates programs and institutions focused on research and education in science and advanced technology.