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The Earth Comes to Madison

October 2001
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MADISON, WI, October 2, 2001—NASA’s Dr. Arthur Frederick “Fritz” Hasler will present the “NASA/NOAA Earth Science Electronic Theater” (or ETheater), in Madison, Wisconsin, October 17-18 during the American Meteorological Society’s eleventh annual Satellite Meteorology and Oceanography conference. Both the conference and ETheater take place at the Monona Terrace Community and Convention Center.

Offering visually stunning views of the Earth from space, the ETheater will be presented to the general public Wednesday evening at 7 p.m. in the Monona Terrace exhibition hall. Middle and high school students will attend previously scheduled shows during the day.

vorticity image Movies made from images like this, showing vorticity, from the CIMSS Tropical Cyclones group, will be shown in the Electronic Theater.

The ETheater reveals the beauty of Earth with scientific insight and technological prowess. Dr. Hasler presents the Earth in several dimensions and in a historical perspective. You'll fly in from outer space to Wisconsin and to the shores of Madison’s four lakes. Early images, from the 1960s, are contrasted with the latest U.S. and international images of the whole Earth and of tornadoes and hurricanes. From the first geostationary weather satellite image in 1966 at the University of Wisconsin through the current GOES, the Earth’s small size is evident.

If you attend the ETheater, you'll see spectacular images of the earth at night from an Air Force weather satellite-cities, fishing fleets, gas flares. Many other images will be provided by UW–Madison’s Space Science and Engineering Center, of tropical cyclones, burning fires, Antarctica, Wisconsin, and more, from NOAA and NASA satellites. SSEC has collected this data for scientific purposes since 1965. Landsat imagery showing Wisconsin in spring, summer and fall is provided by UW–Madison’s Environmental Remote Sensing Center, who also provide a digital high-resolution map of the campus, produced with the Department of Civil Engineering and others.

Wisconsin, from MODIS Wisconsin, as seen by the MODerate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), on NASA’s Terra earth science research satellite.

Fritz Hasler, the ETheater master showman, is a visualization scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center near Washington, D.C. He is also a Madison native and alumnus of Madison schools and UW–Madison’s Department of Meteorology.

These organizations are making the ETheater possible:

Silicon Graphics Incorporated provides support for the Onyx II Graphics Supercomputer used in the Etheater and Pinnacle Systems provides an HDTV nonlinear editing system.

Media representatives can contact Angie Smith, Director, Community & Public Relations at Monona Terrace, for access to morning presentations of the ETheater on Tuesday or Wednesday, October 16 or 17.

For general information on the ETheater and to arrange interviews, contact SSEC's Public Information Officer, 608-263-3373.

Direct comments, suggestions and inquiries to SSEC's Public Information Officer. For information about past media appearances, visit SSEC In the News.

10-2-01 TG