Team Location: NASA Stennis Space Center
Authors: Amanda Billiot, Jason Jones, Renane Burbank, Logan Schultz
Advisors/Science Mentors: Joe Spruce, Dr. Frank Mueller-Karger
Abstract: In recent decades, the scientific community has grown more concerned with how climate change is affecting coral reef systems throughout the world, especially given the ecological importance of coral systems and vulnerability of these systems to decline and mortality. Scientists are constantly experimenting with new technology for monitoring coral reefs, with the goal of understanding the climatic and oceanic changes that can lead to coral bleaching events. Elevated sea surface temperature (SST) is a well-documented cause of bleaching events. Many studies have used coarse resolution data from the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) aboard NOAA’s POES satellite to characterize and study sea surface temperature anomalies with regard to bleaching events. In partnership with NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries (Southeast Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean Region) and the University of South Florida’s Institute for Marine Remote Sensing, this project aims to use higher resolution SST data from Aqua’s Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for EOS (AMSR-E), Aqua and Terra’s MODIS and AVHRR to create a 10-year record of sea surface temperature anomalies in vicinity of the Florida Keys from 2000-2010. The results from this project will demonstrate the feasibility of using AMSR-E and MODIS for detecting SST anomalies and improve upon the current techniques used to monitor coral reef health in the Florida Keys.
Video transcript available here.