The Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite-2, or ICESat-2, measures the height of a changing Earth – one laser pulse at a time, 10,000 laser pulses a second.
Here are 10 things to know about ICESat-2
NASA will soon launch the most advanced laser instrument of its kind, beginning a mission to measure changes in the heights of Earth’s polar ice.
Ice, space lasers, penguins and a workhorse rocket’s last liftoff – it’s the stuff great tweets are made of.
We breathe in the oxygen they produce, clamber up their branches, pick their delicious fruits and sit in their shade – and now it’s time for trees to have the spotlight!
Before beaming 300 miles to Earth’s surface, bouncing off the ground and travelling another 300 miles back into space, ICESat-2's laser photons first have to complete a 7½-foot obstacle course.
The 2016 melt season in the Arctic Ocean started with a bang, with a record low maximum extent in March and relatively rapid ice loss through May - before slowing down in June.
Close enough doesn’t cut it in a NASA Goddard’s Space Flight Center cleanroom, where engineers are building an elevation-measuring instrument to fly on ICESat-2
To catch individual laser photons that have traveled more than 600 miles from a satellite to Earth and back, the satellite's telescope needs to be perfectly positioned.
In August 2015, a NASA instrument flew over Greenland and the Arctic ocean to study how green laser light interacts with snow and ice.