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Data Pathfinders

New to using NASA Earth data? These pathfinders are designed to help guide you through the process of selecting data products and learning how to use them.

Introducing Data Pathfinders

Data pathfinders provide direct links to the most commonly-used data sets and data products across NASA’s Earth science data collections. Earthdata search provides direct access to datasets, regardless of where they are archived, providing access to all research quality data for a given measurement type. These pathfinders supplement the search capability by providing data sets through commonly used tools; these tools provide different ways of visualizing the data, options for subsetting the data, and options for saving the data in different file formats.

True color image showing south west Mexico with red dots to show where high temperatures were detected by VIIRS.

True color image from the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) on the joint NASA/NOAA Suomi-NPP satellite.

Wildfires Data Pathfinder
This pathfinder provides access to datasets that are critical in fire monitoring and fire management. Wildfire data, from NASA satellite missions, can be used to aid in forecasting events, monitor ongoing events, and assess post-fire areas.

  • Forecasting—precipitation, soil moisture, drought severity, topography, land surface temperatures, vegetation density and extent
  • Risk and response—total area burning, fire radiative power
  • Post-fire impacts—total burned area, burn severity, and vegetation regrowth

Map of the US with NO2 data from the Aura Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI).

NO2 data from the Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI) on board the Aura satellite. Figure credit: NASA.

Health and Air Quality Data Pathfinder
This pathfinder is geared to air quality managers and public/environmental health managers as well as citizens interested in using NASA data to monitor air quality for a particular area and to correlate air quality to health conditions. Monitoring air quality provides a means to visualize trends, aid in forecasting events or the movement of pollutants, and responding to events.

  • Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD)
  • AOD to Particulate Matter (PM)
  • Trace Gases—NO2, CO, SO2, surface level ozone
  • Pollutant Transport—aerosol index, dust score, and surface reflectance
  • Public Health

Photo of people farming in a field in Africa.

NASA's SERVIR program worked proactively with farmers in Uganda to monitor agricultural resources to help mitigate crop failure.

Agriculture and Water Resources Data Pathfinder (coming soon)
This pathfinder is directed toward agricultural and water resource managers, decision makers, as well as anyone interested in using NASA data to monitor crop production or water availability. The pathfinder directs users to NASA datasets that can aid in forecasting future events or responding to current events, such as drought. When assessing agricultural and water resources, the data can be grouped into three main areas: land, water, and vegetation.

  • Land—reflectance, temperature, and possible runoff
  • Water—precipitation, snow water equivalent, groundwater, and soil moisture
  • Vegetation—vegetation health, seasonal trends, and evapotranspiration

Last Updated: Aug 13, 2019 at 9:39 AM EDT