Abstract's details

Title: SWOT in the GLOBE Program: Hydrology science in the classroom

Margaret Srinivasan (Caltech Jet Propulsion Laboratory, United States)


Danielle De Staerke (CNES, France); Annette de Charon (ODYSEA, LLC, United States); Carla Lauter (ODYSEA, LLC, United States)

Event: 2016 Ocean Surface Topography Science Team Meeting

Session: Outreach, Education and Altimetric Data Services

Presentation type: Type Poster

Contribution: not provided


A cornerstone element of the NASA’s Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT) Education Program will be participation in the multinational, multiagency program, Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (http://www.globe.gov). The GLOBE Program is a worldwide hands-on, primary and secondary school-based science and education community that consists of 112 participating countries, over 58,000 GLOBE-trained teachers representing over 24,000 schools around the world, and over 1.5 million students who have contributed over 23 million measurements to the GLOBE database for use in inquiry-based science projects. GLOBE brings together students, teachers and scientists through the GLOBE Schools Network in support of student learning and research, as well as support of science goals of NASA’s satellite missions. The mission of the program is to promote the teaching and learning of science, enhance environmental literacy and stewardship, and promote scientific discovery.

The SWOT mission will measure sea surface height and the heights, slopes, and inundated areas of rivers, lakes, and wetlands. This new SWOT-GLOBE partnership will focus on the hydrology aspects of the SWOT mission. These hydrologic measurements will be useful in monitoring the hydrologic cycle, flooding, and climate impacts of a warming world.

GLOBE derives much of its success from its worldwide cadre of teachers who are trained in GLOBE's five core areas of Earth system science, including hydrology. The SWOT Education teams at NASA and CNES are working with the GLOBE Program coordinators to develop and promote a new protocol under the Hydrology topic area for students to measure attributes of surface water bodies that will support mission science objectives. This protocol will outline and describe a methodology to measure width and height of the rivers and lakes.

GLOBE students would establish hydrology measurement sites where they collect observation data of a water body (e.g., lake, river). Schools would be asked to take these data at regular intervals (weekly or longer), ideally corresponding to dates of or near SWOT overflights, and to report data from a prescribed number of days’ observations per year. Prior to the launch of SWOT in 2021, a proof-of-concept student study can be conducted using data from existing altimeters (Jason-2, Jason-3, Sentinels, etc.).

SWOT engagement with the public, and students in particular, will involve communicating the value of these measurements. This is also important to the GLOBE Program as curriculum integration of its hydrology measurements can be enhanced by strengthened ties to the concepts of watersheds and the hydrologic cycle. Understanding can be increased of the relation of lake and river levels to drought, water resources, and other local water conditions, as well.

Poster show times:

Room Start Date End Date
Grande Halle Thu, Nov 03 2016,11:00 Thu, Nov 03 2016,18:00
Margaret Srinivasan
Caltech Jet Propulsion Laboratory
United States