Atmospheric scientists study the weather and climate and examine how those conditions affect human activity and the earth in general. Most atmospheric scientists work indoors in weather stations, offices, or laboratories. Occasionally, they do fieldwork, which means working outdoors to examine the weather. Some atmospheric scientists may have to work extended hours during weather emergencies.
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A Data Support Specialist works with the user community to understand their science needs with the goal of providing support for NASA data and information services. They represent the user in product development and development resources to assist with the user community's needs. This person works directly with users to solve problems using NASA data, or to provide resources to improve understanding of the data.
Mathematical modelers use mathematics to create models that demonstrate complex processes or solve problems. Many mathematical modelers use their skills to create and animate 3D representations of their processes with the assistance of software technology.
Sea Level Scientists are also known by several other names (marine geologist, paleoceanographer, paleoclimatologist, etc.). These professionals use natural records from the past to characterize local, regional, and global environments.
A model analyst develops models to help visualize, observe, and predict complicated data. Model analysis is the process of taking large amounts of data and separate it into a structure that makes it intelligible to the binary process of computers. An analyst also manages the flow of information between different user groups through the use of relational databases.
Environmental engineers use the basis of engineering, soil science, biology, and chemistry to develop solutions to problems in the environment. Some of their efforts involve recycling, waste disposal, public health, water and air pollution control. Many are engaged in solving practical, yet global issues such as unsafe drinking water, climate change, and environmental sustainability.
An environmental planner tries to minimize the environmental impacts of housing, industrial, and transportation-related construction projects. Environmental planners help project managers navigate the environmental permitting process where they review a site to investigate potential environmental effects. This includes the effects of natural disasters.
Botanists research plant characteristics like their physiological processes, their evolutionary history, resistance to disease, relationships to other parts of the Biosphere and within the Earth System.
Many botanists work in different locations; some may work indoors in laboratories and offices conducting experiments while others may work in agriculture and spend much of their time outdoors. Some botanists may also discover new plant species and share their learning with the public through tours and events.
Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices including tools, engines, and machines. These are essential systems in platforms in NASA's Earth Science missions, like satellite and airborne missions. Mechanical engineers work mostly in engineering services, research and development, and manufacturing.
Data scientists work with data captured by scientific instruments or generated by a simulator, as well as data that is processed by software and stored in computer systems. They work with scientists to analyze databases and files using data management techniques and statistics. From changes in sea level, atmospheric composition, or land use, data scientists help make sense of the petabytes of data that NASA collects and stores.