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Soil moisture is the water that is held in the spaces between soil particles, generally in the upper 10 cm of soil; this small amount of water plays a critical role in controlling the transfer of water and heat energy between Hydrosphere, Biosphere, and Geosphere.
The Soil Moisture Active Passive mission (SMAP) was launched in 2015 as the first NASA satellite dedicated to measuring the water content of soils. The satellite uses a radiometer to measure soil moisture in the top 5 centimeters of the ground.
The radar measurements made by NASA's Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) observatory are sensitive to whether land surfaces are frozen or thawed.
Hurricane Harvey dropped record-breaking amounts of rainfall, particularly around Houston, Texas on August 25, 2017.
Visualize NASA data on a custom map or graph using our Earth System Data Explorer. Generate your own maps and graphs using a range of datasets supporting this phenomenon.
Recent Topics at NASA
July 2018 was the driest July in Australia since 2002. The dry month exacerbated an ongoing drought that had already ruined large swaths of grazing land and cropland.
By Kate Ramsayer,
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
NASA SMAP Data Provide Insights for Weather, Agriculture, Climate