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September 27, 2016 AT 1:30 am

Why You Need to Take More Amazing Cloud Photos #CitizenScience #NASA #Science

Clouds for Globe Observer

If you are like most people, you probably have a few cool cloud photos on your phone. Now you can put them to good use according to a post on KATU. NASA has teamed up with GLOBE to encourage citizen scientists to map clouds with the GLOBE Observer app. The idea is to correlate your own sightings with NASA’s satellite images. The app’s site reveals why clouds are so important.

Clouds are a major component of the Earth’s system that reflect, absorb, and scatter sunlight and infrared emissions from Earth. This affects how energy passes through the atmosphere.  Different types of clouds have different effects, and the amount of cloud cover is also important. Clouds can change rapidly, so frequent observations are useful to track these changes.

Not only does this app teach you to identify clouds, but there is also a fun practice section called NOVA Cloud Lab. Interested in those haunting contrails? There’s a section for that, too. If you end up being a top user, you may earn a special invite to become part of a volunteer leadership team with interesting opportunities like behind-the-scenes scientist chats. NASA has been going strong with their citizen scientist endeavors and it’s a reminder that space allows unusual opportunities to help understand our own planet. Check out some of the top photos from app users and learn more about the NASA satellites that are gathering info about our atmosphere. If you like clouds this much, you are probably a weather fan. Why not build this beautiful Feather Weather Lamp starring one of my fave parts—a Neopixel ring. Thanks to the ESP8266 WiFi chip in the Feather Huzzah, the lamp pulls Yahoo Weather data. You can determine if the skies are clear at a glance and impress your artist friends. Throw a weather party and serve hacked rice cakes that look like clouds. Cloud quiz!

DIY Weather Lamp


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3 Comments

  1. Great! Thanks for the app heads up – I’ve downloaded the app, as I love clouds and routinely find myself taking photos of them.

  2. Hey, Nick, some day I would love to do an art installation dealing with clouds and climate change.

  3. Agreed!

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