NASA Energy and Water Cycle Study (ROSES 2018)

Funding Agency:
National Aeronautics and Space Administration

The current state and evolution of the environment are critically intertwined with the water and energy cycles of the climate system. Progress towards comprehensive understanding of both cycles is enabling a better description of the current state of the climate, as well as the subtle shifts that may be going on. While global warming is often summarized as an index of mean temperatures, it is alterations of the water cycle that may be most relevant to life on Earth, especially human society. Water is fundamentally within the center of what all life needs to survive and thrive on the planet and it is no different for human society whose agriculture, energy production, recreation, etc., all require water.

Accomplishing any goals related to better understanding these two cycles requires, in part, an accurate accounting of the key reservoirs and associated fluxes, including their spatial and temporal variability. To accomplish this, integration of existing observations and research tools is a requirement. To achieve this, the NASA Energy and Water Cycle Study (NEWS) grand challenge can be summarized as documenting and enabling improved, observationally based, predictions of water and energy cycle consequences of Earth system variability and change. This challenge requires documenting and predicting trends in the rate of the Earth’s water and energy cycling that corresponds to climate change and changes in the frequency and intensity of naturally occurring related meteorological and hydrologic events, which may vary as climate may vary in the future. The cycling of water and energy has obvious and significant implications for the health and prosperity of our society. The importance of documenting and predicting water and energy cycle variations and extremes is necessary to accomplish this benefit to society. 

A coordinated team effort is required that will integrate NASA’s global water and energy cycle resources to directly address the NEWS challenge. More information on NEWS is available at Interested collaborators with NEWS are specifically recommended to review progress and plans of current NEWS activities that are available at this web location.

Through national and international relationships, NEWS will ultimately facilitate NASA providing added value to the Earth observations resulting from NASA research and development, assist in bringing in added satellite calibration/evaluation data sources, and deliver independent observationally-based data sets for evaluating 4-dimensional data assimilation (4DDA) and prediction capabilities on a regional and global basis


  • Notice of Intent: July 26, 2018
  • Proposal: Oct. 11, 2018 (was Sep. 27)




Engineering and Physical Sciences
Environmental & Life Sciences
International Opportunities

External Deadline

October 11, 2018