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Rain to Continue... 4th of July... NASA: Ground & Crop Moisture Satelllites, Solar Movie-Making Program

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Updated: 7/02/2013 11:44 pm

More areas of heavy rain Tue. though -- overall -- amounts were not as heavy as Mon.  Heavy showers & storms will redevelop Wed. midday through the afternoon.  We'll still see scattered showers & storms on the 4th of July but the good news is that most of the rain will push inland by late afternoon then diminish quickly in the evening.  Most places should be able to get in their fireworks displays, especially metro Jax, the I-95 corridor to the beaches.
Glen St. Mary has had more than 4" of rain since the weekend & many areas have had at least 1" of rain.  Radar imagery below from S. Fl. Water Management District:

The parched west continues to battle wildfires.  Check out images ** here ** & ** here ** from NASA:
Two NASA satellites, Terra and Aqua, have the "Modis" instrument onboard which can help measure ground and crop moisture.  27% of Arizona vegetation is "moderate-to-severe" drought stressed, another 24% is in pre-drought condition.  Weekly images updated Sunday:  6-30-2013

VegDRI is the Vegetation Drought Response Index, a depiction of the vegetation stress (forest, grasslands, crops, etc.)

Also from NASA:
A solar movie-making program produced by scientists from NASA and the European Space Agency just hit a major milestone: its millionth movie. The Helioviewer project – consisting of an online tool at Helioviewer.org and its sister application JHelioviewer -- has been available since 2009. Helioviewer is the brainchild of Jack Ireland, a solar scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., who wanted a way to look at vast arrays of solar data through a single interface.
“There’s one sun, but many different solar observatories,” said Ireland. “They’re all looking at the same thing, and I thought it should be possible to overlay that information together. That way you could get the images you were looking for without having to go to multiple websites.”
Solar scientists are lucky to have a vast array of telescopes – both on the ground and in space – observing different aspects of the sun. Each is tailored to offer details on a particular region, a particular process, or a particular temperature of solar material. Indeed, some observatories offer multiple views: NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory provides 13 different views all by itself. Many research projects require looking at how a given event on the sun appears and develops through a variety of these instruments, together forming a complete image of what’s happening. But with each instrument collecting different data and relying on different software, combining the imagery is not straightforward.
In 2004, Ireland sought an easy, user-friendly platform on which to layer these images. He received a grant to explore the idea and thus Helioviewer was born. In 2007, Daniel Mueller of the European Space Agency joined him to develop the companion application JHelioviewer. Helioviewer.org can be accessed exclusively online, while JHelioviewer is a program that runs locally on a computer.
The Helioviewer project does more than allow scientists to watch the dance of solar events, it allows everyone access to these gorgeous views of the sun. Indeed, with the many eyes of citizen scientists accessing the program, images of interesting events on the sun are more prolific than ever. Such movies are made constantly, and in late April 2013, one user made the project’s millionth movie.
“The 1 millionth movie shows a thin puff of material flying up off the sun,” said Ireland. “But it turns out that evolved into a coronal mass ejection that many people took notice of. Scientists attempt to collect all the events into a single shared database, but as far as I know the only record of this little puff is the video that a Helioviewer.org user made.”

Click ** here ** to view.

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