NASA is launching a new Earth- centered mission which will monitor a variety of items on our planet, and to promote these missions a handful of journalists were allowed entry in the cleanroom at JPL.  In preparation for entry into the cleanroom, reporters were required to clean their cameras and other equipment with rubbing alcohol and wear protective clothing.

One of the missions will send a device called RapidScat, which is constructed at JPL, to be installed at the International Space Station.  RapidScat will use radar to collect data on the speed and direction of wind on the various ocean surfaces.  The RapidScat will hopefully lead better prediction for hurricanes.

Additionally, reporters were also privy to seeing a satellite called the Orbiting Carbon Observatory.    This satellite will better monitor and track carbon levels in the atmosphere and is designed to last about two years.

You can read more about these missions, as well as learn more about one of NASA’s cleanrooms at KPCC.