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9 October 2008 The decadal survey tier 2 missions
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In January 2007, the National Research Council (NRC) released the first decadal survey addressing Earth science entitled "Earth Science and Applications from Space: National Imperatives for the Next Decade and Beyond". The study, initiated in 2004, conducted a decadal survey to generate consensus recommendations from the Earth and environmental science and applications communities regarding a systems approach to the space-based and ancillary observations encompassing the research programs of NASA, the related operational programs of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and associated programs, such as Landsat, a joint initiative of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and NASA. Among its many recommendations, were that NOAA and NASA should undertake a set of 17 missions, phased over the next decade in three year groupings. Of these 17 missions, 15 were designated to NASA. The four NASA Phase 1 missions are currently in Pre-Phase A study at different levels of development with SMAP, a soil moisture monitoring mission, targeting a launch date of 2013 and ICESat-II, intended to continue the record initiated by ICESat-I to monitor ice sheet height changes for climate change diagnosis, targeting a launch date of 2015. The CLARREO solar and earth radiation monitoring mission and the DESDynI Earth surface and ice deformation monitoring mission are preparing to enter Pre-Phase A in 2009. The five NASA Phase 2 missions are: SWOT, a wide swath altimeter mission measuring ocean, lake, and river water levels; HyspIRI, a hyperspectral mission for measuring land surface composition for agriculture and mineral characterization and vegetation types for ecosystem health; ASCENDS, a day/night, all-latitude, all-season CO2 column measuring mission; ACE, an aerosol and cloud profiling mission for climate and water cycle research with an ocean color measuring capability for open ocean biogeochemistry; and GEO-CAPE, a geostationary mission for measuring atmospheric gas columns for air quality forecasts and ocean color for coastal ecosystem health and climate emissions. Risk reduction and concept maturity studies are underway for these Phase 2 missions with the goal to improve their understanding and scope to enable the Earth Science Division (ESD) to make programmatic decisions for FY10 and beyond. An overview of their science requirements, system concept, technology readiness, and study status will be provided.
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Steven P. Neeck, Kenneth W. Jucks, Eric J. Lindstrom, Hal Maring, and Woody Turner "The decadal survey tier 2 missions", Proc. SPIE 7106, Sensors, Systems, and Next-Generation Satellites XII, 71060A (9 October 2008);


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