2013 Fall Meeting Press Conference Schedule

Please scroll down below the table to see the complete listing of press conferences, including participants’ names and relevant session numbers.

MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursday
8:00 - 9:00 AM:
First Results from the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) Mission
8:00 - 9:00 AM:
IPCC: The Future of the Assessment
8:00 - 9:00 AM:
New Observations of Europa from the Hubble Space Telescope
[NEW]
9:00 - 10:00 AM:
Update from Gale Crater: Results from the Mars Rover Curiosity
9:00 - 10:00 AM:
Improved Warnings for Natural Hazards: A Prototype System for Southern California
9:00 - 10:00 AM:
The Weak Solar Cycle and Its Consequences
9:00 - 10:00 AM:
Arctic Report Card 2013
10:30 - 11:30 AM:
Snow Measuring Mission Reaps Big Benefits for California
10:30 - 11:30 AM:
Science from Juno's Earth Flyby
10:30 - 11:30 AM:
Atmospheric Impacts of Oil and Natural Gas Operations
10:30 - 11:30 AM:
Nuclear Weapons Testers Beware: New Technologies for Nuclear Testing Treaty Verification
11:30 AM - 12:30 PM:
SinoProbe: An Unprecedented View Inside Earth's Largest Continent
11:30 AM - 12:30 PM:
Dynamic Mars from Long-Term Observations
11:30 AM - 12:30 PM:
Titan as You've Never Seen it Before: New Results from the Cassini Mission to Saturn
1:30 - 2:30 PM:
Lessons From the Chelyabinsk Airburst
1:30 - 2:30 PM:
The Battle of Fire and Ice: New Scientific Results from Comet ISON
1:30 - 2:30 PM:
New Results From Inside the Ozone Hole
2:30 - 3:30 PM:
Taking Landsat to the Extreme
3:30 - 4:00 PM:
ZAP! The Weird Green Lightning From Chaiten Volcano
4:00 - 5:00 PM:
See-Through Seas: Imaging the Planet’s Hidden Interior
4:15 - 5:00 PM:
Are Tornadoes Getting Stronger?
5:00 - 6:00 PM:
The Risks of Human-Induced Earthquakes

2013 Fall Meeting Press Conferences


First Results from the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) Mission
Monday, 9 December
8:00 a.m.

Solar observations by the small explorer spacecraft IRIS, a NASA mission launched last June, reveal a wealth of violent eruptions at unprecedented resolution. For the first time, IRIS is making it possible to study these explosive phenomena in enough detail to determine their role in heating the outer solar atmosphere. The mission’s images and spectra of the Sun’s chromosphere and transition region also open a new window into dynamics and energetics of the low solar atmosphere that play a pivotal role in heating the solar atmosphere, accelerating the solar wind, and driving solar eruptive events.

Participants:
Alan Title, IRIS Principal Investigator, Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Technology Center, Palo Alto, California, USA;
Bart De Pontieu, IRIS science lead, Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Technology Center, Palo Alto, California, USA;
Mats Carlsson, Professor, Institute of Theoretical Astrophysics, University of Oslo, Norway;
Scott McIntosh, Section Head: Solar Transients & Space Weather, National Center for Atmospheric Research, High Altitude Observatory, Boulder, Colorado, USA.

Sessions: SH12A, SH23B, SH31D, SH32A, SH33A


Update from Gale Crater: Results from the Mars Rover Curiosity
Monday, 9 December
9:00 a.m.

This is a fragrance-free event. Please join us in ensuring accessibility for those with chemical sensitivity and chronic illness by not bringing fragrances or scents on your clothes, hair, or skin. You can prepare in advance by not using products with fragrance, or by using fragrance free, non-toxic products.

NASA’s robotic explorer is examining evidence about ancient Martian environmental conditions that were favorable for microbial life. Findings are also pertinent to future searches for Martian biosignatures and for future human missions to Mars.

Participants:
John Grotzinger, Project Scientist for Curiosity, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, USA;
Joel Hurowitz, Curiosity Science Team Member, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, New York, USA;
Jennifer Eigenbrode, Participating Scientist for Curiosity, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Laurel, Maryland, USA;
Robert Wimmer-Schweingruber, Co-investigator for Radiation Assessment Detector on Curiosity, Christian Albrechts University, Kiel, Germany;
Kenneth Farley, Participating Scientist for Curiosity, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, USA.

Sessions: P13B, P14B, P21D, P23B, P23C, P24A


Snow Measuring Mission Reaps Big Benefits for California
Monday, 9 December
10:30 a.m.

In 2013, a prototype airborne system that maps the snowpack of major mountain watersheds performed unprecedented mapping of the Tuolumne River Basin and its Hetch Hetchy reservoir in the Sierra Nevada, the primary water supply for 2.6 million San Francisco Bay Area residents. NASA’s Airborne Snow Observatory also mapped the Uncompahgre watershed, part of the Upper Colorado River Basin that supplies water to much of the western United States. In this briefing, scientists will discuss how the City of San Francisco’s Hetch Hetchy operation used the data to optimize reservoir filling and hydroelectric generation at its O’Shaughnessy Dam this year during California’s severe drought. Scientists will also discuss how the technology is improving understanding of snow and its melt, and how it can be applied worldwide.

Participants:
Thomas H. Painter, Scientist and Principal Investigator, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, USA;
Bruce McGurk, Hydrologist, McGurk Hydrologic Associates, Oneida, California, USA;
Jessica Lundquist, Associate Professor, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, USA;
Bradley Doorn, Deputy Program Manager, Applied Sciences, NASA Headquarters, Washington, D.C., USA.

Sessions: C11C-02, C13D-02, H13J-1505, G22A-08, IN32A-04, C41B-0606, C43B-0675, C51D-01


SinoProbe: An Unprecedented View Inside Earth’s Largest Continent
Monday, 9 December
11:30 a.m.

SinoProbe is a Chinese earth science research program aimed at revealing the composition, structure and evolution of the continental crust in China. In its initial stage, SinoProbe-I (2008–2013), it has already successfully uncovered new structures as well as located valuable ore-prospective regions in the crust of China. In this briefing, some of the top scientists of SinoProbe (Shuwen Dong, Qingtian Lü, Rui Gao) and a U.S. collaborator (Simon Klemperer) will present a review of the project, how it compares to U.S.A.’s EarthScope, and plans for a vast expansion to make SinoProbe the most extensive multidisciplinary, geological-, geophysical- and geochemical -, but especially seismic-,  survey in history.

Participants:
Shuwen Dong, SinoProbe, Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences, Beijing, China;
Qingtian Lu, SinoProbe, Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences and Institute of Mineral Resources, Beijing, China;
Rui Gao, Key Laboratory of Earthprobe and Geodynamics, Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China;
Simon Klemperer, Professor of Geophysics, and of Geological and Environmental Sciences, Department of Geophysics, Stanford University, Stanford, California, USA.

Sessions: T11B, T13H


Lessons From the Chelyabinsk Airburst
Monday, 9 December
1:30 p.m.

The Chelyabinsk, Russia, meteor airburst on February 15, 2013, injured more than a thousand people and damaged thousands of buildings. It marks the first time scientists can study in detail such an event with a range of modern instruments as well as assess its effects on a populated area. This briefing will offer some of the latest findings about the meteor itself, its explosion and effects, as well as how the incident suggests that smaller, more numerous meteors could pose greater threats to populated areas than previously thought.

Participants:
Clark R. Chapman, Department of Space Studies, Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, Colorado, USA;
Alexandr Smirnoff, KazNDC Institute of Geophysical Researches, Almaty, Kazakhstan;
Mark Boslough, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA;
David A. Kring, USRA-Lunar and Planetary Institute, Houston, Texas, USA.

Sessions: NH21D, NH23D


Taking Landsat to the Extreme
Monday, 9 December
2:30 p.m.

At the coldest spots on Earth, every breath is painful. Clothing crackles and hot water tossed into the air falls to the ground as tiny shards of ice. But how cold can it get on Earth’s surface? Where are these bitterly cold places, and what sort of weather brings on the record-breaking cold? Speakers in this briefing will offer new insights regarding those questions using new information from multiple satellites, with special focus on the new USGS-NASA Landsat 8 satellite, launched earlier this year. Journalists please note that during the press conference and poster session, Dr. Scambos will present new information, updated from his team’s original abstract.

Participants:
Ted Scambos, National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES), University of Colorado Boulder, Boulder, Colorado, USA;
James Irons, Landsat 8 project scientist, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA.

Sessions: C21D, B53G


ZAP! The Weird Green Lightning From Chaiten Volcano
Monday, 9 December
3:30 p.m. (Please note delayed start of this press conference. It will last only 30 minutes.)

In May 2008 the Chilean volcano Chaiten erupted spectacularly and exhibited remarkable lightning activity. Photographer Carlos Gutierrez captured a few images showing unusual kelly-green lightning channels. In this briefing, lightning researcher Arthur Few explains the probable cause of the verdant lightning and what it has in common with other dramatic high-energy atmospheric phenomena.

Participant:
Arthur A. Few, Professor Emeritus, Physics and Astronomy, Rice University, Houston, Texas, USA

Session: AE13B


See-Through Seas: Imaging the Planet’s Hidden Interior
Monday, 9 December
4 p.m.

It has long been difficult and costly to image the nearly two-thirds of the world covered by oceans, leaving a large gap in understanding the Earth’s interior. Scientists typically image the inside of the Earth by observing seismic waves with stations on land, helping researchers answer questions about how the planet works, including how it maintains its relatively constant temperature. In this panel, scientists will discuss the first results from a 10-month mission with newly developed means to observe the planet’s interior below the oceans, including unprecedented seismic observations. The new instrumentation also gives new opportunities for biologists studying marine animals and meteorologists quantifying rainfall.

Participants:
Yann Hello, Director of R&D, Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, Geoazur, France;
Frederik Simons, Associate Professor, Department of Geosciences, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey, USA;
Guust Nolet, Professor of Geophysics, Geoazur, University of Nice/Sophia Antipolis, France, and George J. Magee professor of Geoscience and Geological Engineering, emeritus, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey, USA.

Sessions: S21E, S33A


The Risks of Human-Induced Earthquakes
Monday, 9 December
5 p.m.

Scientists are increasingly able to trace the source of earthquakes to human activities, including reservoirs, natural gas production through hydraulic fracturing, geothermal energy production, carbon sequestration, mining and water irrigation. In this panel, scientists will discuss the risks associated with induced earthquakes and examine some of the largest human-caused seismic events.

Participants:
Christian Klose, Senior Research Scientist, Think Geohazards, New York, USA;
Shemin Ge, Department of Geological Sciences, University of Colorado, Boulder, USA.

Sessions: S12B, PA21A


IPCC: The Future of the Assessment
Tuesday, 10 December
8 a.m.

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the first in a series of reports on the current state of scientific knowledge about climate change in September, with the IPCC’s fifth assessment slated to be completed in 2014. During this panel, authors who contributed to the first working group report will discuss their findings, the uncertainties and gaps that exist, and what this means for future research needs.

Participants:
Thomas Stocker, Co-Chair IPCC Working Group I; Climate and Environmental Physics, University of Bern, Switzerland;
Dennis Hartmann, Working Group I Chapter 2, Observations: Atmosphere and Surface; Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, USA;
Philippe Ciais, Working Group I Chapter 6, Carbon and Other Biogeochemical Cycles; Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l’Environnement, Institut Pierre Simon Laplace, Gif sur Yvette, France;
Olivier Boucher, Working Group I Chapter 7, Clouds & Aerosols; Laboratoire de Meteorologie Dynamique, Institut Pierre Simon Laplace, Paris, France.

Session: U22A


Improved Warnings for Natural Hazards: A Prototype System for Southern California
Tuesday, 10 December
9 a.m.

Scientists will discuss new systems they developed to improve real-time warnings of natural hazards like earthquakes, tsunamis and extreme weather events. The enhanced systems have been used by weather forecasters in Southern California to issue flood warnings and are being integrated into emergency warning systems in San Diego, including monitoring of hospitals and bridges. There are plans to expand the system throughout the western United States.

Participants:
Yehuda Bock, Research Geodesist, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA;
Angelyn Moore, Research Scientist, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, USA;
Mark Jackson, Meteorologist in Charge, National Weather Service, Los Angeles/Oxnard, California, USA.

Sessions: IN11B, S21A, IN23E, NH43A, S44A, G53B, G53A


Science from Juno’s Earth Flyby
Tuesday, 10 December
10:30 a.m.

In October, the Jupiter-bound Juno spacecraft did a flyby of Earth before its long journey. The Juno team presents a low-resolution Earth flyby video as well as data acquired by the spacecraft as it zipped past the home planet. Team members will also discuss results from the mission’s outreach campaign inviting amateur radio operators to “Say Hi to Juno” as the spacecraft passed, and the scientific goals for the mission once it reaches Jupiter.

Participants:
Scott Bolton, Juno principal investigator, Southwest Research Institute, San Antonio, Texas, USA;
John Joergensen, Juno star-camera team lead, Danish Technical University, Copenhagen, Denmark;
Bill Kurth, co-investigator for the Juno Waves Investigation, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa, USA.

Sessions: SM21E, SM33B


Dynamic Mars from Long-Term Observations
Tuesday, 10 December
11:30 a.m.

There has been a continual spacecraft presence at Mars since 1997. The longevity of spacecraft missions examining the Red Planet has enabled detection and examination of changes on multiple time scales. Active processes include planet-encircling dust storms about every three to four Mars years, evolution of the polar caps, fresh impacts, migrating sand, and a suite of processes on slopes, some of which may involve liquid water. The distribution of shallow ice is much better known, with implications for recent climate change. The longer the observations continue, the deeper the understanding grows about active processes on Mars.

Participants:
Alfred McEwen, Principal Investigator for High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA;
Colin Dundas, Science Team Member for High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, United States Geological Survey, Flagstaff, Arizona, USA;
Robert Haberle, Co-Investigator for Mars Color Imager on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California, USA.

Sessions: P31C, P41A


The Battle of Fire and Ice: New Scientific Results from Comet ISON
Tuesday, 10 December
1:30 p.m.

Scientists will report on observations of Comet ISON during its closest approach to the sun on 27-29 November 2013. The comet was clearly visible in the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) and the Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO), and changes in brightness throughout the passage can help scientists determine what the comet was made of. The panel will share data from these results, as well as from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), to present a picture of ISON’s trip around the sun, which appears to have led to its demise. The panel will also report on why ISON was not seen in images from the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO).

Participants:
Dean Pesnell, Project Scientist for the Solar Dynamics Observatory, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA;
Karl Battams, Comet ISON Observing Campaign, Naval Research Lab, Washington, D.C., USA;
Geraint Jones, UCL Mullard Space Science Laboratory and The Centre for Planetary Sciences, University College London, Birkbeck, UK;
Alfred McEwen, Principal Investigator for HiRISE on MRO, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA;
Ralph McNutt, Project Scientist for MESSENGER, Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Maryland. USA.

Sessions: P24A, P31A


Are Tornadoes Getting Stronger?
Tuesday, 10 December
4:15 p.m. (Please note delayed start of this press conference. It will last only 45 minutes.)

A new technique for analyzing the strength of tornadoes based on the extent of damage in their wakes suggests that there is long-term trend in tornado strength. This briefing covers the technique and results of this ongoing research.

Participant:
James Elsner, Department of Geography, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida, USA.

Session: NH23B


The Weak Solar Cycle and Its Consequences
Wednesday, 11 December
9 a.m.

The current solar cycle is on track to be the weakest in 100 years, providing an unprecedented opportunity for scientists studying the sun. In this panel, scientists will examine the current solar cycle in relation to past cycles and discuss the consequences of the weak solar cycle on the various layers regions between the sun and Earth, including implications for space weather, atmosphere and climate.

Participants:
Nat Gopalswamy
, astrophysicist, Solar Physics Laboratory, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA;
Leif Svalgaard, senior research scientist, W. W. Hansen Experimental Physics Laboratory, Stanford University, Stanford, California, USA;
Marty Mlynczak, senior research scientist, Climate Science Branch, NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia, USA;
Joe Giacalone, professor and associate director, Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA.

Sessions: SH23D, SH24A, SH33C, SH33E, SA51A-2032


Atmospheric Impacts of Oil and Natural Gas Operations
Wednesday, 11 December
10:30 a.m.

The United States has more than a million oil and gas producing wells. What are the impacts of these operations on air quality and climate? At this workshop, leading scientists in the field will share the powerful tools and techniques they are using to probe this question. They will also present some of their recent findings, including emissions of the greenhouse gas methane, ozone pollution, and ozone precursors. The researchers will also touch on some of the unknowns that need answering for public officials, industry, and citizens to make scientifically sound decisions.

Participants:
David Allen, Professor, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas;
Jeff Peischl, Associate Scientist, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES), Boulder, Colorado;
Sam Oltmans, senior associate scientist, CIRES, Boulder, Colorado;
Gabrielle Petron, associate scientist, CIRES, Boulder, Colorado.

Sessions: A10, A44A, A51H, A53A, and A53H


New Results From Inside the Ozone Hole
Wednesday, 11 December
1:30 p.m.

More than 20 years after the Montreal Protocol agreement limited human emissions of ozone-depleting substances, the question remains: Is the stratospheric ozone hole over Antarctica recovering? Scientists will present new observations from under the hood of the ozone hole, revealing the internal workings of the annual phenomenon. Why were the holes of 2006 and 2011 so large and why was the hole of 2012 so small? Drawing from the new observations and analyses, the researchers will provide an update on the status of the ozone hole as well as projected trends.

Participants:
Anne Douglass, Aura Project Scientist, NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA;
Natalya Kramarova, atmospheric scientist, NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA;
Susan Strahan, atmospheric scientist, NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA.

Sessions: A41K, A43E


New Observations of Europa from the Hubble Space Telescope
Thursday, 12 December
8:00 a.m.

Previous spacecraft missions to Jupiter’s moon Europa revealed complex patterns adorning the surface and generated a scientific debate about its icy outer shell and subsurface ocean. New observations from the Hubble Space Telescope present a surprising twist to our understanding of this unusual planetary satellite.

Participants:
Lorenz Roth, Southwest Research Institute, San Antonio, Texas, USA;
Joachim Saur, Institute of Geophysics and Meteorology, University of Cologne, Germany;
Kurt D. Retherford, Southwest Research Institute, San Antonio, Texas, USA;
James Green, NASA’s Planetary Sciences Division, Washington, DC, USA.

Sessions: P42A, P35A


Arctic Report Card 2013
Thursday, 12 December
9:00 a.m.

Learn about the latest scientific observations of the Arctic, an extremely sensitive part of the world that is experiencing a sustained warming trend. Scientists provide the latest information on snow cover, sea ice, air temperature, ocean temperature, the Greenland ice sheet, vegetation, fish and wildlife. This annual update to a Report Card began in 2006 demonstrates the importance of long-term observing programs to effectively measure, and attribute significant changes in the Arctic.

Participants:
David M. Kennedy, Deputy Under Secretary for Operations, National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration, Washington, D.C., USA;
Martin O. Jeffries, Ph.D., U.S. Arctic Research Commission & University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, Alaska, USA;
Don Perovich, Ph.D., Thayer School of Engineering, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, USA;
Howard E. Epstein, Ph.D., Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Virginia, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA.

Sessions: C31A, ED43F, B51H


Nuclear Weapons Testers Beware: New Technologies for Nuclear Testing Treaty Verification
Thursday, 12 December
10:30 a.m.

New systems and technologies developed for the verification of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) will be used in the largest-ever simulation of an on-site inspection in the Dead Sea area in Jordan. At the same time, the CTBTO’s global alarm system that could trigger such an inspection has seen many enhancements. Besides its role in ensuring that no nuclear explosion escapes detection, the system generates a wealth of scientific data that can be applied, for example, to tsunami warnings, probing the Earth’s structure, tracking emissions from nuclear accidents, analyzing meteor blasts and volcano eruptions, listening to whales or environmental monitoring of the atmosphere and oceans.

Participants:
Patrick Grenard, Special Assistant to the Executive Secretary, Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Preparatory Commission, Vienna, Austria;
Gordon MacLeod, Chief Policy Planning and Operations Section, Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Preparatory Commission, Vienna, Austria;
Monika Krysta, Atmospheric Sciences Officer, Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Preparatory Commission, Vienna, Austria;
Pierrick Mialle, Acoustic Officer, Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Preparatory Commission, Vienna, Austria.

Sessions: C31A, ED43F, B51H


Titan as You’ve Never Seen it Before: New Results from the Cassini Mission to Saturn
Thursday, 12 December
11:30 a.m.

Saturn’s moon Titan is the only place in our solar system other than Earth known to have a surface dotted with stable bodies of liquid, which take the form of hydrocarbon lakes and seas. With the success of additional flybys of Titan this year by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft and the development of a new way of analyzing data from the radar mapper, Cassini’s science team has put together the most complete multi-image mosaic yet of Titan’s northern land of lakes and views of the region in 3-D. The new results have given Cassini scientists a better understanding of this Earth-like region and its history.

Participants:
Steve Wall, Cassini acting radar team lead, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, USA;
Randolph Kirk, Cassini radar team member, U.S. Geological Survey Astrogeology Science Center, Flagstaff, Arizona, USA;
Marco Mastrogiuseppe, Cassini radar team associate, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy;
Jeff Kargel, Senior associate research scientist, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA;
Linda Spilker, Cassini project scientist, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, USA.

Session: P52B