Additional Information about the Protocols

Review the protocol informational slides
These slides supply lots of supporting information.  Download them and use them as needed for additional training.  (Optional – As much time as needed.)

Precipitation Protocol
In this protocol, participants will learn the procedures for measuring daily rain and/or snowfall totals. Briefly, participants will build a simple rain gauge, place it in an ideal location in your study site, and record both.  These precipitation/rain protocol slides provide additional information beyond the tutorial videos.

Surface Temperature Protocol
This protocol describes the steps for accurately recording the temperature of the surface of the ground in the study site using an infrared (IR) thermometer.  These surface-temperature protocol slides provide additional information beyond the tutorial videos.

SMAP protocol
In this protocol, participants learn the steps for measuring soil moisture content and sharing this information with NASA. Scientists working with the SMAP mission will compare this information with soil moisture information collected by the SMAP satellite to verify the accuary of the instruments on board the satellite. The protocol shows the steps for recording moisture content both by weight and by volume. Briefly, participants will scoop a trowel full of soil, record its weight, dry it either in an oven or under a heat lamp, then weigh it again.   SMAP protocol slides provide additional information beyond the tutorial videos.

Enter precipitation data.

Congratulations! You are ready to add your precipitation sample data to the database. Data that is added to the database must be collected within one hour of solar noon. Solar noon changes each day.  Not sure what time it will occur? Ask Siri or use google to find out.
Before you begin, have you created an atmospheric data collection site in the GLOBE database?

To add your sample data:

  1. Go to the website or download the GLOBE Data Entry application to your mobile device.
  2. Select the site where your surface temperature observations were made.
  3. Select “New Data” under the surface temperature heading.
  4. Complete the form and submit!

Go to and add data now.

Solar noon does not coincide with my schedule, but I still want to collect data!  
GLOBE is in the process of updating the database so that data that is not collected at solar noon can be added.  In the interim, you can use this form to keep submitting your data.

GLOBE citizen science for informal learning centers

Thank you for offering your time and facility space to help your visitors join in citizen science — science we can all do together! This training is meant to help you become familiar with the El Nino field campaign, learn how to set up a field study site right at your center, and teach your visitors how to engage in this scientific research themselves.

NASA, through its GLOBE program, has asked for citizens across the United States to help it collect data that will inform scientific research on patterns of weather change associated with El Nino, a periodic shift in water temperature in the southern Pacific Ocean. It may seem like it’s another world away, but those faraway changes create widespread effects on weather patterns across the U.S. and across the globe. By collecting information about rainfall, cloud cover, temperature, and other variables, NASA aims to better understand global water patterns, which will inform climate change research and much more.

This series of short lessons will show you the correct procedures, or protocols,  for collecting data in four categories: precipitation (rainfall, hail, sleet, snow), cloud cover, soil moisture (how much water the soil holds), and surface temperature (the temperature of the surface of the ground). Taken together, these data help scientists get a better picture of how these different factors vary across the country and also provide a valuable point of comparison for similar data collected from NASA satellites.

All four of these protocols can be done in the same location. Some are very quick and easy, some take a little longer to implement — but with the right site, tools and training, you will be ready to go in no time!