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Students analyze map visualizations representing the amount of Sun’s energy received on the Earth as indicated by the amount that is reflected back to space, known as “albedo”.

Students are introduced to the Earthrise phenomenon by seeing the Earth as the Apollo 8 astronauts viewed our home planet for the first time from the Moon.  They will analyze a time series of mapped plots of Earth science variables that NASA monitors to better understand the Earth System.

This investigation is part of the NASA: Mission Geography Module "What are the causes and consequences of climate change?" that guides students through explorations in climatic variability and evidence for global climate change. 

Students will use NASA satellite data to determine the location of the greatest concentrations of aerosols during the course of a year in the tropical Atlantic region and their relationship to cloud coverage.

Examine a histogram to help answer the driving question "Which data display is most useful for determining the risk of a tropical cyclone in a given area and preparing an effective emergency plan?"


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