Satellites can greatly aid researchers to identify and study potential problem areas in the water from space like algae blooms and polluted runoff. However, the study of water with space-based technology is challenging as water absorbs and scatters light often causing lakes and oceans to appear dark or lack detail in satellite images.
Sweden is not a country typically known for its summer wildfires. Fires occur regularly, but not in the intesity of this year's blaze that has been affecting the region of Västmanland since 31 July 2014.
The fire grew to the largest one in 40 years. It has affected more than 150 square kilometers, killed one person and forced thousands to evacuate.
The Operational Land Imager (OLI), built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colo., has been approved by NASA Goddard Space Flight Center for shipment to Orbital Sciences Corporation, Gilbert, Ariz. for integration onto the Landsat Data Continuity Mission (LDCM) spacecraft.