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NASA | The Ocean's Green Machines [HD]

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One tiny marine plant makes life on Earth possible: phytoplankton. These microscopic photosynthetic drifters form the basis of the marine food web, they regulate carbon in the atmosphere, and are responsible for half of the photosynthesis that takes place on this planet. Earth's climate is changing at an unprecedented rate, and as our home planet warms, so does the ocean. Warming waters have big consequences for phytoplankton and for the planet. More Information on this topic available at: http://climate.nasa.gov/esw Release Date: 08 October 2009 Animator: Megan Willy (IRC/UMBC) (Lead) Video Editor: Maria Frostic (UMBC) Interviewees: Gene Feldman (NASA/GSFC) Michael Behrenfeld (Oregon State University) Narrator: Troy Cline (Raytheon/GSFC) Producer: Maria Frostic (UMBC) Scientists: Gene Feldman (NASA/GSFC) Michael Behrenfeld (Oregon State University) Videographer: Megan Willy (IRC/UMBC) Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
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"The Ocean's Green Machines" is Episode 3 in the six-part series "Tides of Change", exploring amazing NASA ocean science to celebrate Earth Science Week 2009. To find out more visit http://climate.nasa.gov/esw Want more? Subscribe to NASA on iTunes! http://phobos.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=283424434 Or get tweeted by NASA: http://twitter.com/NASAGoddard One tiny marine plant makes life on Earth possible: phytoplankton. These microscopic photosynthetic drifters form the basis of the marine food web, they regulate carbon in the atmosphere, and are responsible for half of the photosynthesis that takes place on this planet. Earths climate is changing at an unprecedented rate, and as our home planet warms, so does the ocean. Warming waters have big consequences for phytoplankton and for the planet.
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Carbon is the basic building block of life, and these unique atoms are found everywhere on Earth. Carbon makes up Earth's plants and animals, and is also stored in the ocean, the atmosphere, and the crust of the planet. A carbon atom could spend millions of years moving through Earth in a complex cycle. This conceptual animation provides an illustration of the various parts of the Carbon cycle. Purple arrows indicate the uptake of Carbon; yellow arrows indicate the release of Carbon. On land, plants remove carbon from the atmosphere through photosynthesis. Animals eat plants and either breath out the carbon, or it moves up the food chain. When plants and animals die and decay, they transfer carbon back to the soil. Moving offshore, the ocean takes up carbon through physical and biological processes. At the ocean's surface, carbon dioxide from the atmosphere dissolves into the water. Tiny marine plants called phytoplankton use this carbon dioxide for photosynthesis. Phytoplankton are the base of the marine food web. After animals eat the plants, they breathe out the carbon or pass it up the food chain. Sometimes phytoplankton die, decompose, and are recycled in the surface waters. Phytoplankton can also sink to the bottom of the ocean, where they become buried in marine sediment. Over long time scales, this process has made the ocean floor the largest reservoir of carbon on the planet. In a process called upwelling, currents bring cold water containing carbon up to the surface. As the water warms, the carbon is then be released as a gas back into the atmosphere, continuing the carbon cycle. Carbon is found in the atmosphere as Carbon dioxide, which is a greenhouse gas. Greenhouse gases act like a blanket, and trap heat in the atmosphere. In the past two centuries, humans have increased atmospheric carbon dioxide by more than 30%, by burning fossil-fuels and cutting down forests. Carbon is the basic building block of life, and these unique atoms are found everywhere on Earth. Carbon makes up Earth's plants and animals, and is also stored in the ocean, the atmosphere, and the crust of the planet. A carbon atom could spend millions of years moving through Earth in a complex cycle. This conceptual animation provides an illustration of the various parts of the Carbon cycle. Purple arrows indicate the uptake of Carbon; yellow arrows indicate the release of Carbon. Release Date: 06 October 2009 Animator: Ivy Flores (IRC/UMBC) (Lead) Producers: Maria Frostic (UMBC) Ryan Fitzgibbons (UMBC) Scientists: Bruce Cook (NASA/GSFC) Gene Feldman (NASA/GSFC) Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center/UMBC
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Want more? Subscribe to NASA on iTunes! http://phobos.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=283424434 Earths oceans are wide reaching and teeming with life. One microscopic aquatic organism plays a major role in making life on Earth possible: phytoplankton. Under certain conditions, excessive phytoplankton growth can result in an area known as a dead zone. Dead zones form when big blooms of phytoplankton at the surface trigger large quantities of organic matter, which then sink to the bottom. Bacteria break down the organic material, releasing carbon dioxide but absorbing oxygen as they work. Most marine organisms need oxygen for survival and dead zones prove fatal for many aquatic species. This short web video features dynamic animations, science data visualizations, and interview excerpts with a NASA oceanographer to explore this fascinating marine phenomenon. For more info: http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/news/topstory/2008/dead_zones.html
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The Ocean is essential to life on Earth. Most of Earth's water is stored in the ocean. Although 40 percent of Earth's population lives within, or near coastal regions- the ocean impacts people everywhere. Without the ocean, our planet would be uninhabitable. This animation helps to convey the importance of Earth's oceanic processes as one component of Earth's interrelated systems. This animation uses Earth science data from a variety of sensors on NASA Earth observing satellites to measure physical oceanography parameters such as ocean currents, ocean winds, sea surface height and sea surface temperature. These measurements, in combination with atmospheric measurements such as surface air temperature, precipitation and clouds can help scientists understand the ocean's impact on weather and climate and what this means for life here on Earth. NASA satellites and their unique view from space are helping to unveil the vast... and largely unexplored.... OCEAN. NASA Earth Observing System Data and Information Systems (EOSDIS) EOSDIS is a distributed system of twelve data centers and science investigator processing systems. EOSDIS processes, archives, and distributes data from Earth observing satellites, field campaigns, airborne sensors, and related Earth science programs. These data enable the study of Earth from space to advance scientific understanding. For more information about the data sets used in this animation please visit,http://earthdata.nasa.gov
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Carbon is all around us. This unique atom is the basic building block of life, and its compounds form solids, liquids, or gases. Carbon helps form the bodies of living organisms; it dissolves in the ocean; mixes in the atmosphere; and can be stored in the crust of the planet. A carbon atom could spend millions of years moving through this complex cycle. The ocean plays the most critical role in regulating Earth's carbon balance, and understanding how the carbon cycle is changing is key to understanding Earth's changing climate. More Information on this topic available at: http://climate.nasa.gov/esw Release Date: 08 October 2009 Animators: Ivy Flores (IRC/UMBC) Megan Willy (IRC/UMBC) Video Editor: Maria Frostic (UMBC) Interviewee: Stacey Bolland (NASA/JPL CalTech) Narrator: Troy Cline (Raytheon/GSFC) Producer: Maria Frostic (UMBC) Scientists: Gene Feldman (NASA/GSFC) Scott Doney (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute) Stacey Bolland (NASA/JPL CalTech) Videographer: Megan Willy (IRC/UMBC) Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
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"Keeping Up With Carbon" is the final episode in the six-part series "Tides of Change", exploring amazing NASA ocean science to celebrate Earth Science Week 2009. To find out more visit http://climate.nasa.gov/esw Want more? Subscribe to NASA on iTunes! http://phobos.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=283424434 Or get tweeted by NASA: http://twitter.com/NASAGoddard Carbon is all around us. This unique atom is the basic building block of life, and its compounds form solids, liquids, or gases. Carbon helps form the bodies of living organisms; it dissolves in the ocean; mixes in the atmosphere; and can be stored in the crust of the planet. A carbon atom could spend millions of years moving through this complex cycle. The ocean plays the most critical role in regulating Earths carbon balance, and understanding how the carbon cycle is changing is key to understanding Earths changing climate.

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