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Processed images from Earth orbiting spacecraft
Bjorn Jonsson
post Nov 15 2012, 12:37 AM
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For some reason it didn't come to my attention until recently (less than a year ago) that the entire Landsat imagery plus a lot of data from other Earth orbiting spacecraft is freely available for download at http://earthexplorer.usgs.gov/ . Maybe this is because for a long time it was more difficult to find good and freely available global maps (or get data to make maps) of the Earth than it was for other planets/satellites - I somehow was under the impression that the vast majority of Earth imagery was commercial.

The Earth is visually a really spectacular planet (in my opinion possibly even the most photogenic body in the entire solar system) so it's possible to get spectacular results by downloading some of this data. The data can be selected by spacecraft, instrument, location, months/years, cloud cover percentage etc.

Data is available from several Landsat satellites but the best data is from Landsat 7; Landsat 5 is also good. This is multispectral data with a resolution of 30 meters/pixel. Here is an experimental and spectacular 12 frame mosaic showing southern Greenland (10% the original size):

Attached Image

The full size version (19000 pixels square) plus additional information can be seen in this blog entry at the Planetary Society website. This image shows a spectacular and complex 'maze' of long and narrow fjords and islands, narrow valleys flanked by steep mountains, glaciers and glacial rivers, countless lakes and ponds and in general a landscape that has been shaped by advancing and retreating glaciers, depending on climate. One important thing to note is that overall this data turned out to be easier to process than is typical for data from other planets.
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post May 20 2018, 07:25 PM
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Nice cloud view Sean - this type of image would be interesting to holistically check atmospheric model output. The simulated Gibraltar images are driven with land surface albedo derived from 500m Blue Marble Next Generation image data. Terrain is from an old 1km USGS database. I added in some synthetic aerosols, though there are models that try to produce them in real-time.

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Posts in this topic
- Bjorn Jonsson   Processed images from Earth orbiting spacecraft   Nov 15 2012, 12:37 AM
- - Bjorn Jonsson   Landsat 8 was launched in February. Following a pe...   Jun 8 2013, 06:15 PM
- - scalbers   There are some other satellites where color proces...   Feb 13 2015, 09:49 PM
- - Sean   Here are some processed, retimed sequences from IS...   Oct 28 2017, 12:01 AM
|- - ugordan   QUOTE (Sean @ Oct 28 2017, 01:01 AM) Here...   Oct 29 2017, 12:20 PM
- - monty python   THANK YOU! Works of art.   Oct 28 2017, 06:01 AM
- - Sean   It is indeed running backwards. I should have spec...   Oct 29 2017, 12:28 PM
- - nprev   Spellbinding, Sean.   Nov 1 2017, 11:47 PM
- - Sean   Moonlight Flight 4k 60fps over on YouTube Exped...   Dec 31 2017, 04:45 PM
- - monty python   Very nice. Thank You!   Jan 1 2018, 08:30 AM
- - Sean   Here is the same source material re-tweened in 60f...   Jan 2 2018, 01:28 AM
- - Sean   Africa to Japan Expedition 34 January 4, 2013 f...   Jan 3 2018, 04:27 AM
- - Sean   I made a movie. ORBIT - A Journey Around Earth ...   Feb 5 2018, 07:03 PM
|- - scalbers   Really neat ORBIT movie from Sean that I'm jus...   Mar 31 2018, 10:08 PM
- - Sean   'Cebile' Tropical Cyclone Cebile from Jan...   Feb 8 2018, 08:36 PM
- - Sean   Volcano Sinabung time-lapse interpolation from Him...   Feb 20 2018, 06:44 PM
|- - PaulH51   QUOTE (Sean @ Feb 21 2018, 02:44 AM) Volc...   Feb 21 2018, 03:53 AM
- - scalbers   Sean - wonderful Cebile animations with the stadiu...   Feb 25 2018, 05:29 PM
- - Sean   Eye of Gita Youtube 4k60 real time reconstructio...   Mar 15 2018, 01:22 PM
- - PaulH51   Nice Thanks Sean   Mar 16 2018, 08:31 AM
- - Sean   Thanks Paul! GITA Youtube 4k60 time-lapse ...   Mar 16 2018, 02:20 PM
- - Sean   NASA Earth posted this image recently so I decided...   Mar 18 2018, 05:27 PM
- - Sean   Thanks Steve... that's pretty close to the sou...   May 19 2018, 06:33 PM
- - scalbers   Nice cloud view Sean - this type of image would be...   May 20 2018, 07:25 PM
- - scalbers   This simulated version of Gibraltar has improved l...   Jul 19 2018, 03:30 PM
- - Sean   Saudi Cloudscape from ISS expedition 47 8 fram...   Aug 4 2018, 01:36 PM
- - Sean   Here is a very quick test of a retimed time-lapse ...   Aug 7 2018, 06:25 PM

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