Quartz: The era of real-time emissions surveillance is upon us

Published on: Apr 15, 2021

“Methane emissions are analogous to a wildfire,” Riley Duren says. “Except these wildfires are invisible.” Duren is the CEO of a nonprofit, Carbon Mapper, that is working with the company Planet to launch two new satellites that will track these emissions from orbit. These occur at gas wells, pipelines, refineries, and power plants, but also landfills and cattle fields. While they dissipate faster than carbon dioxide, they have a greater proportional impact on global warming.”

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Spectroscopy is broadly defined as the study of how electromagnetic energy interacts with matter. There are many different methods that use the principles of spectroscopy to detect, identify, and quantify data about matter including gasses, liquids, and solids.

Spectrometers are instruments that measure this interaction between these different materials and energy.