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Earth Exploration Toolbook Chapter: Visualizing Carbon Pathways
This EET Chapter will introduce you to visualization capabilities available through NASA's Earth Observatory. You'll build several animations of satellite data that illustrate carbon pathways through the Earth system. For instance, you'll build animations of fire images that indicate carbon is being released into the atmosphere. You'll also make animations of plant productivity images that indicate carbon is being removed from the atmosphere and locked into the biosphere. After you've built animations, you'll access another visualization tool to compare sets of other carbon-related data images by controlling their transparency.
Intended for grade levels:
  • Middle (6-8)
  • High (9-12)
Type of resource:
  • For the classroom:
    • Classroom activity
    • Computer activity
    • Guide for instructor
  • Visual:
    • Imagery - remotely sensed
    • Visualization - scientific
  • Dataset:
    • Remotely sensed
  • Atmospheric science
  • Geological Sciences:
    • Geochemistry
Technical requirements:
No specific technical requirements, just a browser required
Cost / Copyright:
No cost
Original, creative works created for the Earth Exploration Toolbook website remain the intellectual property of that program and may be used freely for any non-commercial, educational purpose with attribution to TERC, Carleton College, and the chapter author's affiliation. The EET website was developed by the Science Education Resource Center (SERC) at Carleton College with funding from the National Science Foundation. Any views expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect the views of SERC, Carleton College or any of its sponsors or affiliates. We encourage the reuse and disemination of the material on this site for educational, noncommercial purposes as long as attribuition is retained. To this end the material on this site is offered under a Creative Commons license Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 1.0.
DLESE Catalog ID: SERC-EET-000-000-000-028
Educational standards:
  • National Science Education Standards (NSES):
    • 5-8:
      • Unifying concepts and processes:
        • Change, constancy, and measurement
    • 9-12:
      • Unifying concepts and processes:
        • Change, constancy, and measurement
      • A - Science as inquiry:
        • Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry
      • D - Earth and space science:
        • Geochemical cycles
      • E - Science and technology:
        • Abilities of technological design
      • F - Science in personal / social perspectives:
        • Environmental quality
        • Natural and human-induced hazards
        • Personal and community health
        • Sci. / tech. in local, national, and global challenges
  • National Geography Standards:
    • Environment and society:
      • How physical systems affect human systems
    • Places and regions:
      • The physical and human characteristics of places
    • The world in spatial terms:
      • How to use maps and other geographic representations, tools, and technologies to acquire, process, and report information
Resource contact / Creator / Publisher:
Author: Dr Ali Whitmer
Marine Science Institute
University of California at Santa Barbara

Author: LuAnn Dahlman
Center for Earth and Space Science Education

Contributor: David Herring
Goddard Space Flight Center

Contributor: Dr Bruce Caron
New Media Studio

Contributor: Ray Tschillard
Greeley School District