National Aeronautics and Space Administration

National Climate Assessment

NASA National Climate Assessment (NCA) Activities

NASA Centers Call for Proposals

National Climate Assessment - 2011 NASA Centers Call For Proposals

Lead PI and Center: Ramakrishna Nemani, Ames Research Center
Title:  Assessing Global Change Impact on the US Using National Lightning Data
Proposal Type: Enabling Tools
Project website:

NEX combines state-of-the-art supercomputing, Earth system modeling, NASA remote sensing data feeds, and a scientific social networking platform to deliver a complete work environment in which users can explore and analyze large Earth science data sets, run modeling codes, collaborate on new or existing projects, and share results within and/or among communities. The scientific social networking platform of NEX, similar to many of the social platforms found on the web today, gives scientists and researchers a meeting ground to coordinate the sharing of software tools, algorithms, and data sets so that the knowledge and utilities can be re-used and built upon by other members. We believe NEX provides an ideal platform for engaging the NCA community both to produce peer reviewed results as well as for disseminating the results to a broader community. 

NEX hosts a large collection of data from satellite sensors such as Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR), Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), and Landsat TM and ETM+, as well as global datasets of surface weather records, topography, soils, land cover, global climate simulations, and regionally downscaled climate projections. These datasets are held together with a collection of modeling codes (climate, weather, ecosystem, hydrology), data processing utilities, database management systems, and analysis and visualization tool-boxes. The software components are provided in the customizable work environments, which utilize hardware virtualization, enabling each user to create a virtual machine that is populated with specific data sets, models, and tools aimed at maximizing the ease of use and portability. These virtual work environments can be migrated between computing resources to ensure efficient use of available high end computing resources.

Proposed Effort:
We propose to apply NEX to support development of data products, modeling and data analyses for NCA both through research conducted by the project team as well as through collaboration of teams to be selected through consultation with the appropriate NASA program managers for NCA. The NEX team proposes to accomplish the following tasks:

  1. create and/or enable the development of high-resolution historical climate data as well as downscaled climate projections at 1km resolution, 2)
  2. development of climate change indicators from satellite data, and
  3. climate change impact assessment through ensemble ecosystem modeling.

Our deliverables include:

  1. completion of analyses to support NCA accomplished through use of NEX, including publication of results in the scientific literature;
  2. production of new datasets of direct relevance to NCA and a mechanism to provide access to the NCA community to the climate data, satellite data, model results, and workflows used to generate these data sets and products;
  3. a NEX scientific social networking portal customized for NCA; d) and a suite of NEX visualization tools customized for NCA.