Submitted by JacobAdmin on Tue, 01/31/2012
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GPM Deputy Project Scientist Gail Skofronick-Jackson discusses GPM's snowfall measurement capabilities and the challenges of measuring snow. 

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[wind howling] Gail: The GPM Core, with its ability to detect falling snow, it's one of the very first times that we've put sensors in space to specifically look at falling snow. And we're at that edge where rain was fifty years ago. So we're still figuring out how to measure snow. Snow is much more difficult than rain. Rain tends to be spherical-like drops but if you've ever been out in a snowfall event and you've looked at your shirt you see that snow comes in all different forms. And the sensors in space are actually sensitive to those shapes. And we're still trying to figure out all of that, and the GPM Core, with its additional frequencies and information on the sensors, is going to be able to provide us, for the first time, a lot more information about falling snow than we've ever done before.

Video Credit: Ryan Fitzgibbons / NASA Goddard Space Flight Center