El Nino is a term that comes up every 2 to 7 years, thanks to the unusually warm water that develops across the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean and creates this natural event.
This condition usually affects the local aquatic environment, in addition to bringing into life, a number of different weather patterns in various parts of the globe, usually flooding and in some areas extreme droughts. The El Nino event is expected to happen this winter of 2015/2016 and unlike in the past, this year’s event will be better observed by NASA from space.
2015 El Nino may match the strongest ever event in history
There are signs that this year’s El Nino event will match the strength of what has been recorded as the strongest event in the history of El Nino, which took place in 1997/1998, the World Meteorological Organization revealed. NASA currently has 19 missions that are meant to observe the earth, but none of them was launched before this worst recorded event.
The progress NASA has made in the past two or so decades, especially when it comes to gathering and analyzing data needed by researchers to understand better, the mechanics and impacts of El Nino to the globe in general, has been amazing.
Lesley Ott, a research meteorologist with NASA, said that “El Nino is an interesting occurrence thanks to its wide-reaching, diverse impacts”. Now that NASA has stepped up their focus on this year’s event, the satellite observations provided as well as the availability of supercomputers will provide scientists with a very comprehensive set of tools that improve the process of analyzing El Nino and its global impacts.
NASA will be sharing all of its latest scientific insights as well as images that are related to El Nino throughout this winter. Ott added that scientists “still have a lot to learn regarding El Nino and with the help of NASA’s satellites, we will be able to understand these processes in a new, deeper way”.
Most NASA satellites monitor environmental factors associated with El Nino, its evolution as well as impacts of this event around the globe. Usually, El Nino will be characterized by happenings such as extreme flooding and fires. There are also changes in weather patterns such as cloud cover, storm tracks, among others and the effects on fisheries are also adverse. NASA’s Earth-observing satellites keep track of these impacts and others by recording the ocean and land conditions that are affected and influenced by El Nino.