Published: July 10, 2019

June 19, 2009

This visualization shows 3D volumetric water vapor data from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite. As the camera moves down and around the data set, the low data values are faded out revealing only the highest concentrations of water vapor data. The color and opacity at each 3D voxel are driven by the water vapor data. The data set was obtained by AIRS on NASA's Aqua satellite on January 1, 2003. Only data from the sea level to about 10 km are shown.

This visualization was created to support a JPL press release about how assimilated AIRS data is improving global atmospheric simulation model forecasts by about 6 hours (from about 5 days to about 5 days and 6 hours). View press release at:

AIRS is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., under contract to NASA. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.