What a way to kick off the New Year! I discovered this informative and eclectic podcast while perusing my science section on Flipboard. This podcast, called “LandSat, the next generation”, includes many of the topics that EarthSky covers to ring in the year. Here are a couple of the topics they cover in the podcast:
Did you know that the next generation of Landsat satellites will launch in February 2013 as part of the Landsat Data Continuity Mission? Now that this excellent archive of data is free, we will be able to continue our studies of the Earth’s surface with this new imagery.
Artist’s impression of a Landsat satellite. Image courtesy of NASA
They also discussed how Australia is experiencing record heat and fires across the continent. Temperatures across the country can be easily mapped to see regional changes year over year. The hot and dry heat is responsible for several fires and is also having an interesting side effect: the slowdown of gasoline sales. In some places (note dark red regions below), it has become too hot that you couldn’t even pump gas – when it is that hot, unleaded fuel can vaporize in the heat.
Map courtesy of Australian Bureau of Meteorology
Listen to the podcast and let me know what you think! What projects will you be thinking of, knowing that you will be able to receive more Landsat data in the future?