2020 GLOBE Cloud Challenge Builds Citizen Science Community
Who on Earth would've imagined this time last year that we'd be holding our GLOBE 2020 Community Cloud Challenge in the midst of a global pandemic?
Certainly not us, but here we are, wrapping up our third challenge since 2018. We did things a little differently this year, of course, with safety as our guiding principle. Rather than putting the focus entirely on making cloud observations, which may not have been possible for everyone, we broadened our scope to encompass learning, creating and engaging. These elements are every bit as important to citizen science as making observations. Science is better together, after all.
In the four weeks of the challenge, our GLOBE citizen science community had the opportunity to learn how eight different NASA scientists study clouds to better understand our atmosphere and the important role citizen science observations play in that. Our citizen scientists also had the chance to learn about cloud-related activities from six different GLOBE educators (to view, check out our 2020 Community Cloud Challenge YouTube video playlist).
And considering the circumstances, the number of cloud observations we received from you was still something to be excited about. We received more than 26,000 observations from more than 80 countries around the world. That's about half what we got during last year's fall challenge. To put it in better perspective, though: That's still almost double the amount of observations we received in July and August of 2019. These data points will still be incredibly useful as we measure how clouds vary globally across seasons.
We also wanted to commend challenge participants for all the great photos and artwork we received, some of which are highlighted in the thank you video below.
Thanks again for all your wonderful contributions this year. Here's a breakdown of the observations we received:
Total number of cloud observations: 26,564
Total number of satellite matches: 27,317
Total photos received: 66,249