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Mission News October 16, 2020

Science In Seconds
with Dr. Thomas Zurbuchen

“ACTIVATE is trying to address probably the biggest uncertainty in simulating climate, and that’s how air particles called aerosols interact with the clouds.”
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Mission Highlights
Our Mission

NASA’s Aerosol Cloud meTeorology Interactions oVer the western ATlantic Experiment (ACTIVATE) project is a five-year project (January 2019 – December 2023) that will provide important globally-relevant data about changes in marine boundary layer cloud systems, atmospheric aerosols, and multiple feedbacks that warm or cool the climate. Marine boundary layer clouds play a critical role in Earth’s energy balance and water cycle.

ACTIVATE will study the atmosphere over the western North Atlantic Ocean and sample its broad range of aerosol, cloud, and meteorological conditions using joint flights with two aircraft based at NASA’s Langley Research Center. As an integral part of ACTIVATE, a suite of modeling tools and analysis techniques will be employed to inform preflight planning, perform data analysis, and climate model uncertainty quantification and improvement.