January 23, 2018

January 23, 2018

The global Landslide Hazard Assessment for Situational Awareness (LHASA) model generated a map that showed the potential for mudslides in California. Thomas Stanley (617/USRA) created the model’s primary components: a global landslide susceptibility map, an antecedent rainfall index.

Following the lengthy and devastating fires of December 2017, the ground in this part of California was left as ash and soil; with the swift and intense rainfall and a lack of solid buildings and trees that had been destroyed by the fires, mudslides resulted in several deaths and much destruction. News coverage on this event and recovery efforts continue, as of this writing. The use of LHASA was highlighted in a NASA feature (https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2018/nasa-calculated-heavy-rainfall-leading-to-california-mudslides), which was picked up by many websites, including Phys.org: https://phys.org/news/2018-01-nasa-heavy-rainfall-california-mudslides.html#nRlv and Science Newsline: http://www.sciencenewsline.com/news/2018011211120038.html

More information on LHASA is available here: https://pmm.nasa.gov/applications/global-landslide-model

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NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, in Greenbelt, Maryland, has been in operation for 50 years -- chartered on May 1, 1959. The Goddard Space Flight Center is a major U.S. laboratory for developing and operating unmanned scientific spacecraft. During the past 50-years, Goddard has been at the forefront in exploration, in technological achievement, in space science, and in studying the Earth as a system.

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GESTAR conducts research collaboratively, mainly within NASA GSFC's Earth Sciences Division, but also with Solar Systems Exploration Division, Office of Education, and Office of Public Affairs. Scientists and staff at GESTAR, in collaboration with NASA and other investigators, conceive and develop new, space-based missions; provide mission requirements; conduct research that explains the behavior of Earth and other planetary systems; and create engaging media that tell NASA's story of exploration and discovery on Earth and beyond.

ABOUT USRA

Universities Space Research Association (USRA) is an independent, nonprofit research corporation where the combined efforts of in-house talent and university-based expertise merge to advance space science and technology. USRA works across disciplines including biomedicine, astrophysics, and engineering and integrates those competencies into applications ranging from fundamental research to facility management and operations. USRA engages the creativity and authoritative expertise of the research community to develop and deliver sophisticated, forward-looking solutions to Federal agencies and other government sponsors.