Snow in Science, Culture, and Climate

NASA SnowEx Education Outreach Initiative

2023 SnowEd SnowEx Collaboration

The sites of NASA study

What: SnowEd 2023 National Outreach Campaign for NASA’s SnowEx

Who: Our Winter World with UAF GI, NASA Globe with UAF IARC, Winter Wildlands Alliance Snow Schools (National)

Where: Nationally, but in conjunction with NASA’s SnowEx campaign that is taking place in and around Fairbanks, Toolik Field Station, other parts of Alaska 

When: March 6th – 17th, 2023

Why: Overall goal: educate others and excite them about why snow is important 

About SnowEd: 

In March over 50 U.S. and international snow scientists will come to Alaska to test new ways of measuring snow from above. Snow is the source of drinking and irrigation water for billions of people world-wide, a key factor in the timing of spring green-up here in Alaska, and a crucial element in cooling the Earth’s climate. NASA, who is sponsoring the science campaign, is looking for better ways to detect and measure snow from space on a global scale. NASA’s long-term goal is to launch a dedicated snow satellite 

In conjunction with NASA’s SnowEx Alaska campaign, a parallel effort is underway to engage the public and school children in learning about snow. Snow scientists at the University of Alaska Fairbanks are launching a national level education and project titled “SnowEd” running from March 6th-17th, 2023. SnowEd allows students across the nation to explore snow-STEAM subjects indoors with COSI Connects Snow Kits and outside in groups using UAF-designed and produced large snow science kits for use by educators. Near 800 small COSI Connects Snow Kits and 45 lage Snow-STEAM will be distributed throughout Alaska and to Winter Wildlands Alliance Snow Schools across the United States for this outreach effort. Serina Wesen, Education & Outreach Designer with the Snow, Ice and Permafrost group; and Dr. Matthew Sturm, Snow Professor and Geophysicist of UAF are teaming up with Winter Wildlands Alliance Snow Schools, GLOBE, COSI, and NASA SnowEx researchers for their SnowEd campaign. Ultimately, SnowEd will allow students across the nation to join SnowEd to become snow scientists. Here in Alaska, the UAF GLOBE Partner invites youth, educators and families to measure the snowpack in their communities and enter the data in the GLOBE Observer App.

To learn more about SnowEd please refer to the links below:

Study sites: courtesy NASA SnowEx (

From left to right; Christi Buffington, Beatrice Turley, Serina Wesen
Students showing off their percolation project
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Matthew Sturm standing under percolation