STEM Professionals' Blog


The GLOBE International STEM professionals Network (GISN) Blog is an online collaborative effort where scientists associated with GLOBE post their thoughts, comments, and philosophies about a variety of science topics.

GLOBE strongly encourages positive and productive discussions to further advance the scientific understanding of all involved with The GLOBE Program.




The NASA GLOBE Clouds team is looking for members of the GLOBE International STEM Network (GISN) or any researcher that would be interested in publishing research (as lead or co-author) using the GLOBE Clouds data.  We are looking for researchers that are interested in: Cryosphere that would be willing to use cloud observations over the Arctic/Antarctica. Satellite validation studies with collocated observations, particularly those collected during GLOBE Clouds Data Challenge (March 15-April 15, 2018). Natural hazards to explore...


Posted in: Event Topics: Other GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science Climate Climate Change Data Included GLOBE Protocols Earth System Science GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Primary Audience: Scientists

  The 2019 GLOBE International Virtual Science Symposium important dates and rubrics are now available! The GLOBE Clouds team at NASA Langley Research Center would love to see you use cloud observations in your research!  Do you need some ideas? Here are a few. Also, don't forget about the blog on how to come up with a good research question .  K-2nd grade: - What is the cloud type observed the most during Fall/Spring/Summer (choose one or a different period of time)? - Which cloud type, nimbostratus or cumulonimbus, produces the most...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math Technology STEM Event Topics: Science Symposia and Fairs GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science Climate General Science GLOBE Protocols Earth System Science Primary Audience: Alumni Country Coordinators Partners Scientists Students Teachers Trainers

In GLOBE, there are two major perspectives on the global environment – the spheres and the Earth system. The Teacher’s Guide and the new sphere pages build on the approach that examines Earth as the atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, and pedosphere. The study of Earth System Science focuses on the cycles that connect the spheres – the Energy, Water, and Biogeochemical. The Honor Roll provides recognition of those who report in depth in one area or another. There are three honor rolls recognizing Atmosphere measurement reporting; one for Hydrosphere;, and two each for Biosphere and...


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math Field Campaigns: Carbon Cycle SMAP El Niño Surface Temperature GPM GLOBE Science Topics: Earth as a System Earth System Science

I just updated HoloGLOBE to v1.0.2. For those of you new to this app, HoloGLOBE brings NASA and NOAA visualizations of the Earth to the palm of your hand through augmented reality (AR). You can read more about the app here: http://www.palmyracove.org/InstituteforEarthObservations/HoloGLOBE.aspx In this latest release, I have added play/pause functionality to the MyNASAData module. The MyNASAData is essentially an augmented reality version of GLOBE's Earth System Poster. In addition the new ICESat-2 module has been added. The ICESat-2 module was built by Emme Wiederhold, a student...


Posted in: Curriculum: Assessment and Evaluation Education Research Language Culture and Arts Science and Math Technology STEM Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) GLOBE Learning Expeditions Other Science Symposia and Fairs Competitions Meetings Workshops Field Campaigns: FLEXE SCRC SCUBAnauts Seasons and Biomes Watersheds Carbon Cycle GGIC SCRC - Phase 1 SCRC - Phase 2 SMAP El Niño Surface Temperature GPM GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science Climate Climate Change Data Included General Science General Science @es GLOBE Protocols Earth as a System Earth System Science Scientist Skills Meetings/Conferences GLOBE Working Groups: Evaluation Working Group Science Working Group Education Working Group Technology Working Group Investigation Areas: Atmosphere Hydrosphere Earth As a System Pedosphere (Soil) Biosphere Learning Activities: Atmosphere and Climate Earth as a System Hydrology Land Cover/Biology Soil News Topics: Competitions Meetings Video Web Maintenance / Enhancements Calendar IOPs Regions SCRC Research Training Virtual Science Fair Primary Audience: Alumni Country Coordinators Partners Scientists Students Teachers Trainers Teacher's Guide: Time Requirement Standards Requirement Grade Level Protocol Specific Documents Language Investigation Area Documents

Eight-grade students from Our Lady of Mount Carmel School have been very active during our GLOBE 2017-18 U.S. Air Quality Student Research Campaign. In fact, they recently submitted their team projects to the GLOBE 2018 International Virtual Science Symposium. All students have done remarkable work and one of the most important skills they have developed is collaboration. Among these students, one of them stood out for becoming a Calitoo expert user and for helping not only the members of her own team, but also the members of all other teams, with her accurate AOT measurements. This...


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math STEM Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) GLOBE Science Topics: General Science GLOBE Protocols Earth System Science GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Aerosols Primary Audience: Partners Students Teachers

    Today we will get a closer at look at the values displayed on our Calitoo screen. When you first turn on your Calitoo, you will get a screen like the following: note the serial number of your instrument will be displayed.                After the initial screen, your instrument will display basic information as shown on the following picture (Source: http://www.calitoo.fr/uploads/documents/en/usermanual_2016_en.pdf ) TIP: The temperature displayed by your Calitoo is actually the temperature ...


Posted in: Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) Science Symposia and Fairs GLOBE Science Topics: GLOBE Protocols Earth System Science GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Aerosols News Topics: Virtual Science Fair Primary Audience: Partners Students Teachers Trainers

The NASA GLOBE Clouds team recently presented a webinar the details of how your cloud observations are matched to satellite data. The webinar, recording found below, also focuses on the importance and quality of the observations, ways that the data can be used by scientists, and current work being done by the team at NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, VA.  The webinar also highlights newly processed data from the temperature and cloud observations reported for the Great North American Solar Eclipse on August 21, 2017.      See how your data...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math Technology STEM Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science General Science GLOBE Protocols Earth System Science Scientist Skills Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Clouds News Topics: Video Primary Audience: Country Coordinators Partners Scientists Teachers Trainers

Spring is starting to spring in some parts of the Northern Hemisphere but not quite yet in others. The March observations period for the Urban Heat Island/Surface Temperature Student Research Campaign has started. Please take surface temperature observations in March to help out with the campaign. If you can, please take observations from two sites so you can compare the temperatures for them. One approach is to take observations from a grassy area and an asphalt area to compare. Just a quick look at surface temperature data on the GLOBE visualization page shows the cold weather that is...


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science Earth System Science

From the start, the measurement of daily maximum and minimum air temperature within one hour of local solar noon has been a key GLOBE protocol. The low cost approach was to use a U-tube thermometer housed in a wooden instrument shelter facing away from the equator. The U-shaped tube contained mercury with pins on either side of the mercury. As the air temperature warmed the pin on one side would move while the other pin stayed in place; when the air cooled, the pin on the other side would be pushed up. The pins were held in place by magnetized strips behind the thermometer tube so that...


Posted in: Curriculum: Technology STEM GLOBE Science Topics: Climate Climate Change GLOBE Protocols Earth as a System Earth System Science GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Investigation Areas: Atmosphere Primary Audience: Alumni Country Coordinators Partners Scientists Students Teachers Trainers

In my previous blog post, I showed the results of my surface temperature experiment. It was a great way to highlight some of the practical ways to use science, and it was yet another way for me to talk about my puppy. My experiment and accompanying blog was straightforward enough. I identified a problem, I designed an experiment, collected data, and presented the results. This is how science is done, right?! With years of experiment experience behind me, this should have been a very fast and easy task, but I had one problem that I forgot to account for, my Attention Deficit Disorder. ...


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science Earth as a System Earth System Science Scientist Skills Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Surface Temperature

These are the results from my surface temperature experiment that I discussed in my previous blog post (same title, part 1). Results and Conclusion : Figure 2: Graph of average surface temperatures of the three surfaces over three days including air temperature data lines. My results show that my hypothesis was half right (remember, it’s ok if your data results do not match your hypothesis!). During the day, asphalt was the hottest, concrete was in the middle, and grass was the coolest. The surface temperatures of all three dropped at night, however, I was...


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science Data Included GLOBE Protocols Earth System Science Scientist Skills Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Surface Temperature News Topics: Virtual Science Fair

In case you missed it, last month, was all about the 2017 International Virtual Science Symposium . There were over 140 entries from all 6 GLOBE regions. Students submitted reports about their research on all of the “spheres” (hydrosphere, atmosphere, biosphere, pedosphere, and earth as a system) and they were reviewed by a panel of scientists, teachers, and science enthusiasts to be rewarded with stars and badges. I had the wonderful privilege of being able to read through and review several projects. I was blown away with the thought and hard work that went into these projects....


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science Data Included GLOBE Protocols Earth System Science Scientist Skills Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Surface Temperature News Topics: Virtual Science Fair

As Earth science has a single uncontrolled object of study, the first rule is to take today’s data today. While ice and sediment cores and fossils can reveal past conditions, the observations that can be made right now cannot be replaced by ones taken later. This goes well with the Native American adage, “You can’t step in the same river twice.” The environment is constantly changing and doing so on a wide range of time and space scales. In a recent video post, Neil deGrasse Tyson said, “One of the great things about science is that it is an entire exercise finding what is true. You...


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) GLOBE Learning Expeditions Science Symposia and Fairs Field Campaigns: SMAP El Niño GLOBE Science Topics: Climate Climate Change General Science Earth as a System Earth System Science Investigation Areas: Earth As a System Primary Audience: Alumni Students Teachers

In most scientific research an important test is whether the results of an experiment can be repeated, typically repeated by another lab and research group. A result that cannot be confirmed in this way is generally viewed as invalid. This is a great test for controlled experiments where virtually identical experimental conditions may be achieved. In Earth science research involving observations of the natural world, experimental conditions cannot be reproduced. For environmental research the standard must switch for repeatable to intercomparable – capable of being compared. Research...


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science General Science GLOBE Protocols Earth System Science Investigation Areas: Atmosphere Hydrosphere Pedosphere (Soil) Biosphere Primary Audience: Alumni Scientists Students Teachers Trainers

Most trees obtain water through their massive root systems, but did you know that some trees can absorb water through their leaves as well? This ability is called foliar uptake. Scientists recently discovered that trees in cloud forests use foliar uptake to obtain water. A cloud forest is a forest that has persistent or seasonally persistent fog or low-level cloud cover. Cloud forests are usually in the tropics or subtropics, have evergreen trees (trees that don’t lose their leaves) and tend to have a lot of mosses and vegetation in the understory of the trees. Cloud Forest...


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: Earth System Science Investigation Areas: Earth As a System Biosphere

GLOBE’s Earth as a System investigation area cultivates students’ awareness of an intricate web of global connections. Similar to real world scientists, students explore life science concepts, learning that “ organisms can only survive where their needs are met. ”  The Earth as a System investigation area encourages students to observe patterns and connections, such as through phenology. Phenology is the study of how living organisms respond to seasonal changes in their environment. Only through observing and measuring can we notice if changes are occurring and how they occur. ...


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: Earth System Science Investigation Areas: Earth As a System Biosphere » Ruby-Throated Hummingbirds

All over the United States, spring flowers such as daffodils and crocuses began blooming nearly a month ago due to an unseasonably warm winter.  Some of my friends from many parts of the country have been mentioning how beautiful their gardens are and enjoying the warm weather.  Even my family and friends from the Mid-Atlantic region have been sending photos showing off their beautiful home gardens. Daffodils in bloom in late February Many think it’s really nice to see green grass, budding trees, and flowers in bloom in late February, as it’s a spirit lift...


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science Climate Earth System Science

From January 22 to 26, 2012, scientists from around the world gathered for the American Meteorological Society annual meeting, which was held in New Orleans, Louisiana.  Scientists from the GLOBE Program stayed next to the beautiful Mississippi River. The Mississippi River in New Orleans (photo courtesy of Dr. Donna Charlevoix) The Mississippi River is the lifeblood of New Orleans and has so impacted the city that the city was actually developed around it. The first buildings were constructed around the river edge, which has the highest ground, and now...


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: GLOBE Protocols Earth System Science Investigation Areas: Hydrosphere Primary Audience: Students

This week we’ll finish our look at the climate summaries for each GLOBE region with a focus on the Near East-North Africa region.  Remember that these annual reports provide a summary of the global climatic conditions and are a great benchmark for monitoring climate. Regional reports provide a tremendous amount of information. The temperature and precipitation climate summaries are highlighted here, but if you are interested, more information about the Near East-North Africa region state of the climate is available from this website: ...


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: Climate Climate Change Earth System Science

This week we’ll continue our look at the climate summaries for each GLOBE region, with a focus on the North America region.  These annual reports provide a summary of the global climatic conditions and are a great benchmark for monitoring climate. Regional reports provide a tremendous amount of information. The temperature and precipitation climate summaries are highlighted here, but if you are interested, more information about the North America Region state of the climate is available from this website: ...


Posted in: GLOBE Science Topics: Climate Climate Change General Science Earth System Science