- Published on Nov 12, 2008
- Contact Nicole Casal Moore
EVENT: A web-casted NASA seminar about the role the planet itself plays in the levels of carbon dioxide in the air, involving a University of Michigan professor.
Anna Michalak, an assistant professor in the departments of Civil and Environmental Engineering, and Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences, is one of three researchers who will discuss the important role the "breathing" Earth plays in current and future levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
Michalak's work aims to map the sources and sinks of carbon dioxide around the globe. A sink is a region that takes in CO2 like a sponge soaks up water. Oceans and plants are major carbon sinks.
While the amount of carbon dioxide produced by fossil-fuel burning and other human activities continues to grow, a significant amount is absorbed by ocean and plants. Scientists are trying to pinpoint where, when and how Earth removes carbon from the air in order to better forecast future levels of the gas that is a major contributor to global warming.
Michalak is also involved in NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory, a satellite designed to make global atmospheric carbon dioxide measurements with unprecedented precision. The satellite is scheduled to be launched in early 2009.
Other panelists in this seminar are Scott Denning, carbon cycle scientist at Colorado State University, Ft. Collins; and William Emanuel, program manager at NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington, D.C.
PLACE: Watch the seminar online live at NASA TV at: http://www.nasa.gov/ntv
Anna M. Michalak: http://www.umich.edu/~amichala/
NASA Earth Science Program: http://nasascience.nasa.gov/earth-science/
Orbiting Carbon Observatory: http://oco.jpl.nasa.gov/
Anna M. MichalakNASA Earth Science ProgramOrbiting Carbon Observatory