Earth Day staff picks–top 10 photos of the world

To celebrate Earth Day, we asked staff at the Space Science and Engineering Center (SSEC) and the Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies (CIMSS) to share their favorite images of Earth as seen from space and terrestrially. Selections range from the most historic images captured in the late 1960s, to the most recent snapshot from this week. Here are our top choices:

  • Slide 0

    True color full disk image of Earth taken by GOES-16 March 2017.

    Kaba Bah, CIMSS Research Scientist

    Credit: CIMSS/SSEC

  • Slide 1

    Earth at night taken by Suomi NPP in 2016.

    Eric Verbeten, SSEC Communications Specialist

    Credit: NASA Earth Observatory images by Joshua Stevens, using Suomi NPP VIIRS data from Miguel Román, NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

  • Slide 2

    Hurricane Katrina: The GOES-12 image shows the immense size of Hurricane Katrina on August 28, 2005 at approximately 1745 UTC.

    Tim Schmit, NOAA Satellite Researcher

    Credit: CIMSS/SSEC

  • Slide 3

    Enchanting Day/Night Band on Suomi NPP VIIRS with moon glint that lights up the entire Mississippi River in this image from the 0640 UTC overpass on January 19, 2016. Note the aurora over Canada.

    Margaret Mooney, CIMSS Education and Outreach Director

    Credit: CIMSS/SSEC

  • Slide 4

    Composite image showing ocean surface temperatures and water vapor, compiled from several satellites from US, Europe and Japan.

    Rick Kohrs, SSEC Instrumentation Technologist

    Credit: CIMSS/SSEC

  • Slide 5

    An image of a dust storm in Saudi Arabia from GOES-1 when it was deployed over the Arabian Sea in 1979 as part of SUMMER MONEX – I was in the storm. From this viewpoint the dust storm is seen over the Rub Al-Khali desert, noticeable by how it blurs out the desert features.

    Steve Ackerman, SSEC Interim Director

    Credit: CIMSS/SSEC

  • Slide 6

    The first true color full-disk image of Earth taken by ATS-III geosynchronous satellite (1967).

    Jean Phillips, SSEC Communications Director

    Credit: NASA/SSEC

  • Slide 7

    A false color image is a marvelous way to colorize the earth to draw out thunderstorms or certain clouds, or to visualize the Earth’s atmosphere as a fluid. Taken by Suomi NPP May 29, 2014.

    Jordan Gerth, CIMSS Meteorologist

    Credit: CIMSS/SSEC

  • Slide 8

    The 2012 Blue Marble taken by polar orbiting satellite Suomi NPP.

    Paul Menzel, CIMSS Interim Director

    Credit: NASA

  • Slide 9

    Antarctica at 11:30 p.m. near McMurdo Station. Taken December 2016 during 24 hours of daylight.

    Carol Costanza, Antarctica Meteorological Research Center Researcher

    Credit: Carol Costanza

by Eric Verbeten