“PIRANAs and PIRATAs Remote Sensing the Amazon River Plume” with Ajit Subramaniam (Oct 2004)

by | Jul 27, 2023 | Marine and Terrestrial Biology

Originally presented 23 Oct 2004

The PIRANA in question is our NSF-funded Biocomplexity study: “Potential Influence of Riverine and Aerosol inputs on Nitrogen fixation in the Atlantic.” The PIRATA is: “PIlot Research moored Array in the Tropical Atlantic.” (yes, tortured acronyms that someone spent a lot time coming up with!) Most of Dr. Subramanian’s talk will be on the influence of the Amazon and Saharan dust on the tropical marine ecosystem. He will also talk about the moored array that sends back temperature and salinity data realtime from the tropical Atlantic, as he seeks strategies to utilize these kinds of real time data sources for classroom exercises.

Dr. Subramanian joined the LDEO Marine Biology Division at the beginning of 2004. His Workshop was originally scheduled for December, but has been changed to this date to enable him to participate in remote sensing training in Chile. we are very pleased to welcome him to the Earth2Class program.

Introduction to this Workshop

Here is the introductory slide show presented by Dr. Passow.

Click on your preferred format, PowerPoint or html.

“PIRANAs and PIRATAs” (ppt)“PIRANAs and PIRATAs” (html)

Cutting-Edge Research

For more information, please go to his personal web pages on the Lamont-Doherty web site:

Classroom Resources

Teacher-Created Remote Sensing Instructional Activities

DEENA BOLLINGER (South Orangetown MS) created this activity based on th3 2004 E2C workshop:

Amazon River Plume Inquiry Activity

KAREN COLE (Spence School, New York City) created this activity based on the 2005 E2C workshop:

Nitrates, Phosphates, and Water Quality

Stan Ogonowski (Smithtown, LI, Freshman Center and AMS DataStreme Participant) offer this activity for teaching about remote sensing:

Remote Sensing of Earth by Satellite

NASA Teachers Resources about SeaWIFS


There are links to a NASA Teacher Workshop; a “Remote Sensing Tutorial”; “From a Distance,” which provides K – 12 lesson plans; and more.

NASA ISS EarthKAM Educational Resources
The International Space Station will not become fully functional for years, but since 1996, images have been taken from the ISS that provide scientists and students with great views of our planet. You can find out much more about the ISS through http://www.earthkam.ucsd.edu/.
Numerous activities for students have been created and are available on-line at http://www.earthkam.ucsd.edu/public/educators/activities/index.shtml. These include “Introductory” actvities about using the ISS EarthKAM images (presented through a bingo game); Earth Science and geography lessons about deltas, volcanoes, and other features; studying weather from space; and mathematics.

SERC Earth Exploration Toolkit

“When is Dinner Served? Predicting the Spring Phytoplankton Bloom in the Gulf of Maine” by Denise Blaha and Amy Holt Cline

Previous E2C Remote Sensing Presentations

Dr. Christopher Small has presented Workshops for Teachers every year about his research using remote sensing techniques. You might wish to explore these:
“Using Satellite Data to Map the Sea Surface and Sea Floors”—Christopher Small (Apr. 2000)

Remote Sensing of Our Planet”—Christopher Small  (Apr. 2002)

“Overview of Remote Sensing Techniques”—Christopher Small (Oct. 2002)

“Exploring the Southern Oceans with Ships and Satellites” — Christopher Small (Mar 2004)

Web Sites used in creating today’s presentations

Click here for selected web sites suggested by Dr. Ajit Subramanian.
Click here for selected web sites suggested by Dr. Michael J. Passow.

(Some are on both lists.)

American Meteorological Society Education Program links:
DataStreme Ocean: In the “Biological” section, check out the links to “Ocean Color (Productivity),” “Harmful Algal Blooms,” “Chesapeake Bay Phytoplankton,” and others that may interest you.

Water in the Earth System: Examine some of the images available through the “NASA Earth from Space” and “NASA Earth Observatory” links.

Other Resources for This Topic

Selected Web Sites about Remote Sensing and Plankton in the Marine Ecosystem suggested by Dr. Ajit Subramanian

NASA Earth Science Enterprise Missions: http://www.earth.nasa.gov/ese_missions/satellites.html

NASA MODIS web links: http://modis.gsfc.nasa.gov/

NASA Goddard Ocean Color resources: http://reason.gsfc.nasa.gov/Giovanni/

Ocean Color home page: http://oceancolor.gsfc.nasa.gov/

SeaWIFS image gallery: http://seawifs.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEAWIFS/IMAGES/SEAWIFS_GALLERY.html

International Ocean Colour Coordinating Group educational links: http://www.ioccg.org/training/links.html

Bigelow Labs educational links: http://www.bigelow.org/phytopia/

Selected Web Sites about Remote Sensing and the Nitrogen Cycle in Marine Ecosystems suggested by Dr. Michael J. Passow

NASA web pages:
SeaWIFS Project: http://seawifs.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEAWIFS.html
SeaWIFS teacher resources: http://seawifs.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEAWIFS/TEACHERS/
SeaWIFS plankton: http://seawifs.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEAWIFS/sanctuary_4.html
Ocean color images: http://daac.gsfc.nasa.gov/CAMPAIGN_DOCS/OCDST/ssics_index.html
Intro to remote sensing: http://education.ssc.nasa.gov/fad/default.asp

Bigelow Labs web pages:

About the Nitrogen Cycle and nitrogen fixation: http://users.rcn.com/jkimball.ma.ultranet/Biology/N/NitrogenCycle.html

American Meteorological Society Education Program links:
DataStreme Ocean: In the “Biological” section, check out the links to “Ocean Color (Productivity),” “Harmful Algal Blooms,” “Chesapeake Bay Phytoplankton,” and others that may interest you.

Water in the Earth System: Examine some of the images available through the “NASA Earth from Space” and “NASA Earth Observatory” links.

One of the best resources to locate useful online resources is DLESE — Digital Library for Earth System Education


E2C Workshop for Teachers featuring Ajit Subramanian, Oct 2004 by Michael J. Passow

Click here to watch the slideshow.


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Program Evaluation

Two external evaluators conducted formal assessments of the Earth2Class
program in conjunction with our NSF Geoscience Education Grant.
Read their reports:

Dr. Pearl R. Solomon
Professor Emeritus, St. Thomas Aquinas College, Sparkill, NY

Dr. James Ebert
Earth Sciences Department, SUNY College at Oneonta, Onenta, NY


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