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Science Questions and Science Study Groups

The Science Study Group (SSG) is a group of scientists, appointed by NASA Headquarters, to help in formulating and understanding the science requirements for the HyspIRI mission. The SSG provides a broader interface with the research community and includes scientists from Universities and the NASA centers.

To date there have been 3 Science Study Groups. The first two groups were created in 2007, and worked on the early mission studies when the VSWIR and TIR instruments were treated independantly. These groups were disbanded in 2008 and a new group formed which included experts from the community which covered both the VSWIR and TIR wavelength ranges.

2007 VSWIR Science Study Group

2007 TIR Science Study Group

2008 HyspIRI Science Study Group

The International Science Study Group:

International Science Study Group


Science Questions

The goal of the HyspIRI mission is to provide the data and products needed to address a set of key science questions. These science questions were indentified in the National Research Council Decadal Survey and have since been refined by the HyspIRI Science Study Groups and research community. The questions are grouped in 3 areas: 1) questions primarily requiring visible shortwave infrared (VSWIR) data; 2) questions primarily requiring thermal infrared (TIR) data and 3) questions requiring a combination of VSWIR and TIR data. These are referred to as the vq, tq and cq questions respectively. The table below provides the overarching question and a link to a more detailed presentation which describes each of the subquestions under the overarching question. There is 1 slide per subquestion. These detailed subquestions have been used to define the measurement requirements for the HyspIRI mission.


Question #Question
cq1 How do Inland, Coastal, And Open Ocean Aquatic Ecosystems Changing Over Time Due To Local and Regional Land-Use Change And Other Factors? PDF
cq2 How are fires and vegetation composition coupled? PDF
cq3 Do volcanoes signal impending eruptions through changes in the temperature of the ground, rates of gas and aerosol emission, temperature and composition of crater lakes, or health and extent of vegetation cover? PDF
cq4 How do species, functional type, and biodiversity composition within ecosystems influence the energy, water and biogeochemical cycles under varying environmental conditions? PDF
cq5 What is the composition of exposed terrestrial surface of the Earth and how does it respond to anthropogenic and non anthropogenic drivers? PDF
cq6 How do patterns of human environmental and infectious diseases respond to leading environmental changes, particularly to urban growth and change and the associated impacts of urbanization? PDF
tq1 How can we help predict and mitigate earthquake and volcanic hazards through detection of transient thermal phenomena? PDF
tq2 What is the impact of global biomass burning on the terrestrial biosphere and atmosphere, and how is this impact changing over time? PDF
tq3 How is consumptive use of global freshwater supplies responding to environmental changes and demand, and what are the implications for sustainable management of water resources? PDF
tq4 How does urbanization affect the local, regional and global environment? Can we characterize this effect to help mitigate its impact on human health and welfare? PDF
tq5 What is the composition and temperature of the exposed surface of the Earth? How do these factors change over time and affect land use and habitability? PDF
vq1 What is the global spatial pattern of ecosystem and diversity distributions and how do ecosystems differ in their composition or biodiversity? PDF
vq2 What are the seasonal expressions and cycles for terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, functional groups, and diagnostic species?  How are these being altered by changes in environmental conditions, land use, and disturbance? PDF
vq3 How are the biogeochemical cycles that sustain life on Earth being altered/disrupted by natural and human-induced environmental change?  How do these changes affect the composition and health of ecosystems and what are the feedbacks with other components of the Earth system? PDF
vq4 How are disturbance regimes changing and how do these changes affect the ecosystem processes that support life on Earth? PDF
vq5 How do changes in ecosystem composition and function affect human health, resource use, and resource management? PDF
vq6 What are the land surface soil/rock, snow/ice and shallow-water benthic compositions PDF