Earth scientists conduct research to characterize and understand the atmosphere, land, and oceans on our home planet to make better predictions of future changes by:
- Studies to understand natural and human effects on stratospheric ozone, both globally and the enhanced loss in polar regions
- Studies of the ocean circulation and its interaction with the atmosphere and ice, with a focus on ocean topography and vector winds
- Improving our understanding of processes affecting air quality
- Measurements to understand the Earth's water cycle, including water vapor isotopes, cirrus cloud formation, and soil moisture
- Measuring and understanding current levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide and its land and ocean sources and sinks for better climate change predictions and
- Space-based observations and computational models to understand behavior of earthquake fault systems and the processes and impact of volcanic eruptions, and the composition of the Earth's surface.
Research is carried out in laboratory studies, aircraft, balloon, ground and space-based observations, theoretical modeling, and data analysis.
People in the Section Office