February 23 2009 - Thirty billion tons of carbon dioxide go into the air from the burning of fossil fuels each year. About half of it stays in the air. The other half disappears. Where it goes, nobody quite knows.
With the Orbiting Carbon Observatory, a NASA satellite scheduled to be launched Tuesday morning from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, scientists hope to better understand the comings and goings of carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas driving the warming of the planet.
The new data could help improve climate models and improve the understanding of the "carbon sinks" like oceans and forests that absorb much of the carbon dioxide. More >>>