Welcome to Earth Today, produced by Animated Earth
This is page under development. Check back for more information.
What is Earth Today? Earth Today (ET) is an exhibit that displays near-real-time earth science data. The data is displayed as a rotating global image with accompanying narration and screen text. The ET text and narration are updated to reflect notable events, keeping the exhibit fresh and interesting.
click on the image below to view a quicktime movie of the Earth Today exhibit, 238 MB
What is the ET target audience? ET is an informal educational display ideal for museums, and other public areas such as NASA visitor centers, schools, libraries or public buildings.
How does ET work? ET operates by ingesting global data sets from operational servers into a central server. The central server preprocesses the data into images and stores them for the ET display systems. Several times a day, the ET display system automatically downloads new images from the central server through a broadband connection.
What are the ET display technology requirements? The ET exhibit requires a Mac G5 computer, a display devic,e and a broadband connection. The ET exhibit can use many display devices including a monitor or projector. Because the system is autonomous and uses COTS hardware, the museum staff does not need technical expertise to operate the ET display.
Where can I currently see ET? ET is on display at the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum, the Maryland Science Center, and the NASA GSFC Visitors Center,
What are the future developments planned for ET? Four new ET developments are presently underway:
1) A user driven version, which will enable the viewer to control the earth’s orientation, rotation speed, or zoom into a particular region. The viewer will be able to compare data sets by selecting them in succession or by overlaying two sets and adjusting the transparency. Users will also be able to access archived data sets to compare with to current data.
2) A series of short, educational movies explaining satellite remote sensing, science questions and findings, and themes that cut across earth science disciplines such as Climate Variability and Change, Atmospheric Composition, Carbon Cycle, Ecosystems, Biogeochemistry, Water and Energy Cycles, and Weather.
3) The addition of new data sets. EOS Aura column ozone and aerosols will be added very soon. The capability exists to add any number of global data sets to the system and extend the narration to cover those data sets.
4) Additional explanatory materials about each data set displayed on ET are in the development stage. These materials can be used as written docent guides.
Following is a special earthquake movie featuring the earthquake in the Indian Ocean
that occurred on 12-26-04, 94 MB
Although the data sets will continue to expand, the present list of Earth Today Sources are listed a the chart.
Click here to view the Earth Today Source chart.
The Hologlobe was developed as a part of the Smithsonian's 150th birthday celebration. The Hologlobe has evolved into the Earth Today exhibit.
The Hologlobe was a 3-D hemisphere about four feet in diameter that appeared to float several feet in front of a background screen. Projected onto the Hologlobe are 11 sequences of images created from actual data collected primarily through satellite observations. The following still images are derived from these animations.
click on the image below to view the HoloGlobe movie, 74 MB
The Hologlobe supported NASA's mission of communicating science to the general public. The primary purpose of the HoloGlobe was to educate and excite the public about Earth science data and about what types of earth information are being collected and why this information is important. The HoloGlobe presents information in an intuitive manner that is easy to understand, not only by scientists, but students and the general public as well.
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