NASA announces new science missions

May 27, 2010 at 5:18 PM
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WASHINGTON, May 27 (UPI) -- NASA says hurricanes, air quality and arctic ecosystems are among research projects planned during the next five years by its new airborne science mission.

The space agency's new Earth System Science Pathfinder program is designed to complement NASA's larger research missions. The selected proposals are the first in a new series of low- to moderate-cost projects.

NASA said the projects will be funded at a total cost of no more than $30 million each. Six NASA centers, 22 educational institutions, nine U.S. or international government agencies and three industrial partners are involved in the missions. The five projects, selected from among 35 proposals, are:

-- Airborne Microwave Observatory. Principal investigator Mahta Moghaddam, University of Michigan.

-- Airborne Tropical Tropopause Experiment. Principal investigator Eric Jensen, NASA's Ames Research Center.

-- Carbon in Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment, Principal investigator Charles Miller, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

-- Deriving Information on Surface Conditions from Column and Vertically Resolved Observations Relevant to Air Quality. Principal investigator James Crawford, NASA's Langley Research Center.

-- Hurricane and Severe Storm Sentinel. Principal investigator Scott Braun, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center.

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