NASA’s SMAP Satellite Launched for Tracking Soil Moisture

February 1, 2015 6:36 PM

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NASA’s soil moisture tracking satellite (SMAP) has been launched from California on Saturday, carried by an unmanned Delta 2 rocket. The data obtained by the satellite will be used for weather-forecasting and for tracking global climate change. Scientists opine that this would help the forecasters and policy-makers to take effective steps during flood or drought in specific regions. Dara Entekhabi, lead scientist of NASA’s Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) observatory stated “It’s the metabolism of the system.”

The satellite was launched at 6:22 a.m. PST (1422 GMT) from Vandenberg Air Force Base, situated in California’s central coast, following a delay of two days owing to high winds and minor damage in rocket’s insulation. SMAP will be measuring the amount of water in the top 2 inches of soil for at leas...

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