A 'Blue Marble' image of the Earth taken from the VIIRS instrument aboard NASA's most recently launched Earth-observing satellite - Suomi NPP. (Image credit: NASA/NOAA/GSFC/Suomi NPP/VIIRS/Norman Kuring)
By Dr. Amber Jenkins,
NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Cross-posted from weather.com
NASA released the spectacular view of Earth below on January 25, 2012 from its newest Earth-observing satellite, "Suomi NPP." It is the first of a new generation of satellites that will observe many facets of our changing Earth.
This composite image above uses a number of swaths of the Earth's surface taken on January 4, 2012. NASA has renamed this newest Earth-observing satellite in honor of the late Verner E. Suomi, a meteorologist at the University of Wisconsin who is recognized widely as "the father of satellite meteorology."
A 'true-color' image of the Eastern United States taken on January 19, 2012. This image was taken between 5:57 pm USA EST and 6:04 pm USA EST. (Image credit: NASA/Suomi NPP/Atmosphere PEATE/Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison/Liam Gumley)
From its vantage 512 miles above Earth, the Visible Infrared Imager Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) on the new Earth-observing satellite gets a complete view of our planet every day. This image from November 24, 2011, is the first complete global image. Rising from the south and setting in the north on the daylight side of Earth, VIIRS images the surface in long wedges measuring1,900 miles across. The swaths from each successive orbit overlap one another, so that at the end of the day, the sensor has a complete view of the globe. The Arctic is missing because it is too dark to view in visible light during the winter. (Image credit: NASA Earth Observatory)
A Delta II rocket launches the new satellite from Space Launch Complex 2 at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. on Friday, Oct. 28, 2011. This is the first NASA satellite mission to address the challenge of acquiring a wide range of land, ocean, and atmospheric measurements for Earth system science while simultaneously preparing to address operational requirements for weather forecasting. (Image credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls)