Feeds

NASA teams with Cisco to track carbon in 'near real-time'

New insights into climate change

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Global climate science could get a kick in the pants with NASA's new pact with Cisco Systems to monitor and report carbon buildup across the world in "near real-time."

The US space agency says it's teaming with Cisco to create a network of satellite-, airborne-, sea-, and land-based sensors to update Earth's environmental status as the world turns. Data for the platform, dubbed "Planetary Skin," will be made available to the general public, governments, and businesses, according to NASA.

Earth's present carbon standing will help businesses and governments alike to "help detect and adapt to global climate change," the space agency said. Apparently, you never know when a major coastline is going to sink into the sea – and that's exactly where you don't want to build your new mattress factory.

"In the past 50 years, NASA's expertise has been applied to solving humanity's challenges, including playing a part in discovering global climate change," said NASA Ames Research Center director S. Pete Worden in a statement. "The NASA-Cisco partnership brings together two world-class organizations that are well equipped with the technologies and skill to develop and prototype the Planetary Skin infrastructure."

Planetary Skin will start with a series of pilot projects, featuring "Rainforest Skin," which will focus on monitoring deforestation as well as debuting NASA and Cisco's fancy new sensor network being used for the platform. Rainforest Skin is expected to be prototyped in 2010. The sensors will capture, analyze, and present information about the changes in the amount of carbon in the rainforest in a "transparent and useable way," NASA said. The agency added, "according to scientists, the destruction of the rainforests causes more carbon to be added to the atmosphere and remain there. This contributes significantly to global warming."

Sadly, they aren't accepting logo ideas.

Cisco brands the layers the Planetary Skin thusly; 1) SensorFabric, a database of airborne and terrestrial sensor networks around the world. 2) DecisionSpaces, a Web 2.0 mashup of "decision-support tools," and 3) CommonSpaces, is where regulatory agencies and entrepreneurs can use the tools for "proactive management of resources, risks, and new environmental markets."

The networking house's literature on Planetary Skin is available here. Take fair warning the PDF package is very much written by Cisco, if you catch our drift. The collaboration's website is here.

Planetary Skin is also being pitched to the United Nations, development banks, businesses, and government agencies, according to Cisco. It hopes participants will pool their skills to help develop better ways to manage national resources and carbon emissions. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
GRAV WAVE DRAMA: 'Big Bang echo' may have been grit on the scanner – boffins
Exit Planet Dust on faster-than-light expansion of universe
Mine Bitcoins with PENCIL and PAPER
Forget Sudoku, crunch SHA-256 algos
SpaceX Dragon cargo truck flies 3D printer to ISS: Clawdown in 3, 2...
Craft berths at space station with supplies, experiments, toys
NASA rover Curiosity drills HOLE in MARS 'GOLF COURSE'
Joins 'traffic light' and perfect stony sphere on the Red Planet
'This BITE MARK is a SMOKING GUN': Boffins probe ancient assault
Tooth embedded in thigh bone may tell who pulled the trigger
DOLPHINS SMELL MAGNETS – did we hear that right, boffins?
Xavier's School for Gifted Magnetotaceans
Big dinosaur wowed females with its ENORMOUS HOOTER
That's right, Doris, I've got biggest snout in the prehistoric world
Japanese volcano eruption reportedly leaves 31 people presumed dead
Hopes fade of finding survivors on Mount Ontake
That glass of water you just drank? It was OLDER than the SUN
One MEELLION years older. Some of it anyway
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.