The Earth’s surface and its interior are fundamental components of the Earth system influence and react to the dynamics of our oceans and atmosphere. Therefore, an understanding the dynamics of the solid Earth is essential to developing an interconnected view of Earth science and its applications that ranges from natural hazards and climate change to fundamental physics.
As basic research leads to prediction of solid earth processes, so is the need to adapt this research to real societal problem solving. Knowledge that improves human abilities to prepare and respond to disasters involving the dynamism of the Earth’s interior has an immediate benefit to saving lives and property. Earth Surface and Interior focus area (ESI) seeks to coordinate the efforts of the NASA’s Research and Analysis Program in Solid Earth with the Applied Sciences Disaster Management Program to provide a continuum of development from research to applications that will enable first responders, planners, and policy makers to improve decision tools through NASA science and technology.
The strategic plan of the ESI focus area is entitled “Living on a Restless Planet” a.k.a. “The SESWG Report “identifies six scientific challenges and provides guidance for addressing these challenges. The six scientific challenges are: