Salt is essential. Circulating through our bodies and our seas, it impacts the health of people and the planet. Salt dissolved in seawater – measured as salinity – drives currents that distribute heat and carbon around the globe. So, salt not only preserves our food, it helps to preserve our climate by contributing to global ocean circulation.

Earth is an ocean planet. Key water cycle processes – precipitation and evaporation – mostly occur over the ocean. Thus, monitoring sea surface salinity patterns provides important clues about changes in our environment.

NASA observes salinity. Merging data from satellites and other instruments, our mission is to better understand ocean circulation, the water cycle, and climate.


Latest News »

JPL SMAP Sea Surface Salinity (SSS) CAP V4.3 Dataset Release (18-Mar-20). The PO.DAAC is pleased to announce the availability of the PI-produced JPL V4.3 SMAP Sea Surface Salinity (SSS) and extreme winds data.
SMAP Satellite Identifies Thailand’s Worst Drought in Decades (15-Feb-20). SMAP data are used to identify Thailand's worst drought in possibly four decades.
Satellites Help Track Ocean Acidification in the Bay of Bengal (13-Dec-19). Scientists explore the use of satellites, including NASA's Aquarius mission, to track ocean acidification in the Greater Caribbean, the Amazon Plume and the Bay of Bengal.