Satellite Winds

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Resource Type:Classroom Activities; Curricula and Instruction
Grade Level:
7 8 9 10 11 12
Organization:Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies (CIMSS)
Summary:The idea of using successive satellite observations of clouds to determine wind direction and speed was pioneered by Professor Suomi of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. This module provides an explanation of how this is accomplished. While the concept is simple, the procedure is rather complex. In fact, it took several decades before satellite derived winds were accurate enough to be incorporated into weather forecasts. The wait was well worth it however and today, all of society benefits from the increased coverage provided by satellite wind technology. In this activity, students will learn how clouds and wind are tracked using satellite images, as well as problems associated with these images.
Earth Science Big Ideas:Big Idea 3; Big Idea 4
NGSS Discplinary Core Ideas:ESS2.D
NGSS Performance Expectations:MS-ESS2-5
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:Planning and carrying out investigations
NGSS Crosscutting Concepts:Cause and effect: Mechanism and explanation
Subjects: maps; weather; windstorms
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