The Ocean - a driving force for Weather and Climate

  • Released Thursday, August 2, 2012

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.

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Sponsored by Earth Science Data and Information System Project/NASA GSFC

Joint project between NASA GSFC and NASA JPL

Carol Boquist, NASA GSFC
Jennifer Brennan, Adnet Systems Inc., NASA GSFC
Dr. Brian Krupp, Adnet Systems Inc., NASA GSFC
Dr. Eric M. De Jong, NASA JPL
Barbara McGuffie, NASA JPL

Science Advisors:
Jessica Hausman, NASA JPL
David Moroni, NASA JPL
Dr. Jorge Vazquez, NASA JPL
Dr. Scott Braun, NASA GSFC
Dr. Arthur Hou, NASA GSFC
Dr. Matthew Rodell, NASA GSFC
Dr. Eric Lindstrom, NASA HQ

Robert Baldwin, Studio Orb

Raymond A. Hearn

Erica Drezek, Honeywell Technology Solutions Inc., NASA GSFC

Special Thanks:
Paul Andres, Jason Craig and Michael Stetson,
Solar System Visualization Project, NASA JPL
Heather K. Dennis, Studio Orb
Dr. Michelle Gierach, NASA JPL
Dr. Matthew Smith, NASA Global Hydrology Resource Center
Dr. Wendy Tang, NASA JPL
M. Sara Tweedie, Tweedie & Assoc.

Data sets available through:
NASA Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) Data Centers

Global Hydrology Resource Center Distributed Active Archive Center (GHRC DAAC)
GOES data distributed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Goddard Earth Science Data and Information Services Center (GES DISC)
AIRS imagery created using the NASA GES DISC Giovanni Tool

Langley Atmospheric Science Data Center (LaRC ASDC)

Land Processes DAAC (LP DAAC)

Ocean Biology Processing Group (OBPG)

Physical Oceanography DAAC (PO.DAAC)

NASA Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC)
Population Density, Natural Hazard Drought Indices and Flood Risk data

Next Generation Blue Marble data courtesy:
NASA Earth Observatory

Release date

This page was originally published on Thursday, August 2, 2012.
This page was last updated on Wednesday, May 3, 2023 at 1:52 PM EDT.


This visualization can be found in the following series:


This visualization originally appeared on the following tapes:
  • The Ocean - A Driving Force for Weather and Climate (ID: 2011031)
    Friday, August 3, 2012 at 4:00AM
    Produced by - Tim Carnahan (NASA)