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The Expansion of Shanghai
Erebus Casts a Mighty Shadow
Patchwork of Corn in the Snow
Lake Oahe, South Dakota
Image of the Day Dec 11, 2019

The Expansion of Shanghai

The Chinese city has reclaimed land from shallow coastal waters at a rapid rate.

Sediment Sloshes in Solway Firth
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Sediment Sloshes in Solway Firth

Fjords and funnel-shaped bays and inlets are often the scene of dramatic tidal changes and sediment loads.

Published Dec 6, 2019

Image of the Day Water

A Second Look at Susquehanna Sediment
Earth Matters

A Second Look at Susquehanna Sediment

A recent report synthesizes what scientists have learned about the ecological effects of high sediment flows from the Susquehanna River on the Chesapeake Bay.

Published Dec 6, 2019 in Earth Matters

Water

A Bloom in the Strait of Hormuz
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A Bloom in the Strait of Hormuz

A phytoplankton bloom appeared in one of the world’s busiest oil waterways.

Published Dec 5, 2019

Image of the Day Water

A Cirrus Arc
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A Cirrus Arc

Circulation around a jet streak—a fast-moving pocket of air within the jet stream—formed this distinctive arc of clouds.

Published Dec 4, 2019

Image of the Day Atmosphere Severe Storms

Australian Fires Still Burning
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Australian Fires Still Burning

Bushfires continued in early December to produce smoke along the the country's eastern coast.

Published Dec 4, 2019

Atmosphere Heat Land Drought Fires Remote Sensing

Satellite Observes Massive Ocean Migration
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Satellite Observes Massive Ocean Migration

Every night, under the cover of darkness, countless small sea creatures swim from the ocean depths to feed near the surface, then descend out of sight again before daybreak.

Published Dec 3, 2019

Image of the Day Life Water Remote Sensing

Fire
Global Maps Mar 2000 — Nov 2019

Fire

Whether started by humans (farming, logging, or accidents) or by nature (lightning), fires are always burning somewhere on Earth. These maps show the locations of fires burning around the world each month.

Land

Typhoon Kammuri Approaches the Philippines
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Typhoon Kammuri Approaches the Philippines

A powerful typhoon brought violent winds and torrential rainfall, causing thousands to evacuate.

Published Dec 2, 2019

Image of the Day Atmosphere Land Water Severe Storms Remote Sensing

Land Surface Temperature Anomaly
Global Maps Feb 2000 — Nov 2019

Land Surface Temperature Anomaly

These maps depict anomalies in land surface temperatures (LSTs); that is, how much hotter or cooler a region was compared to the long-term average. LST anomalies can indicate heat waves or cold spells.

Heat Land

A Burial Site Fit for an Emperor
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A Burial Site Fit for an Emperor

Japan’s Daisenryo Kofun looks like a forest on a hill, but it is actually one of the largest tombs in the world.

Published Nov 27, 2019

Image of the Day Land Human Presence Remote Sensing

Building Roads in the Congo Rainforest
Earth Matters

Building Roads in the Congo Rainforest

In a recent article, we showed satellite imagery of road expansion in the Congo Basin. Now view those changes with images taken from inside the rainforest.

Published Nov 27, 2019 in Earth Matters

Severe Winter Storm Hits the West Coast
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Severe Winter Storm Hits the West Coast

A winter storm brought flash flooding, heavy snow, and hurricane-force winds to the Pacific Northwest.

Published Nov 27, 2019

Image of the Day Atmosphere Unique Imagery Remote Sensing

Aerosol Optical Depth
Global Maps Mar 2000 — Nov 2019

Aerosol Optical Depth

Airborne aerosols can cause or prevent cloud formation and harm human health. These maps depict aerosol concentrations in the air based on how the tiny particles reflect or absorb visible and infrared light.

Atmosphere

Agriculture Patterns in the Great Plains
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Agriculture Patterns in the Great Plains

The grid-like pattern that spreads across the encompassing flatlands is typical of the Great Plains region and of Nebraska in particular.

Published Nov 27, 2019

Image of the Day Land Human Presence

All Eyes on Tonga’s Kingdom of Volcanoes
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All Eyes on Tonga’s Kingdom of Volcanoes

An undersea eruption at Lateiki Island in late October 2019 has brought new life to an older island in the Tonga chain.

Published Nov 26, 2019

Image of the Day Land Water Volcanoes

Great Fox is Disappearing
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Great Fox is Disappearing

Rising waters are swallowing up another island in Chesapeake Bay.

Published Nov 26, 2019

Image of the Day Land Life Human Presence

Rice Bowl from a Reclaimed Lake
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Rice Bowl from a Reclaimed Lake

Lake Hachirō in northern Honshu was once Japan’s second largest lake.

Published Nov 26, 2019

Image of the Day Human Presence

November Puzzler
Earth Matters

November Puzzler

Every month on Earth Matters, we offer a puzzling satellite image. Your challenge is to use the comments section to tell us what we are looking at, where it is, and why it is interesting.

Published Nov 26, 2019 in Earth Matters

When a Road Leads to Deforestation
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When a Road Leads to Deforestation

Road networks in the Congo rainforest have significantly increased over the past decades, but not all paths lead to long-term destruction.

Published Nov 25, 2019

Image of the Day Remote Sensing

Comb Ridge, Utah
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Comb Ridge, Utah

A mountain-building event lifted up this area between 40 and 70 million years ago.

Published Nov 22, 2019

Image of the Day Land

Porpoiseful Ice Studies
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Porpoiseful Ice Studies

Hundreds of scientific papers have come out of NASA’s Operation IceBridge, which ended this week.

Published Nov 22, 2019

Image of the Day Snow and Ice

The Oysters of Tongyeong
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The Oysters of Tongyeong

About 80 percent of South Korea’s oysters are grown in these waters.

Published Nov 22, 2019

Image of the Day Life Water Human Presence

Making Sense of Amazon Deforestation Patterns
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Making Sense of Amazon Deforestation Patterns

Decades of satellite data make it possible to map how deforestation has evolved over time.

Published Nov 21, 2019

Image of the Day Land Fires Human Presence Remote Sensing

NASA Data Helps Assess Landslide Risk in Rohingya Refugee Camps
Earth Matters

NASA Data Helps Assess Landslide Risk in Rohingya Refugee Camps

Scientists are working to mitigate hazards for people in vulnerable communities.

Published Nov 20, 2019 in Earth Matters

Water Land

Blue Marble Next Generation
Article

Blue Marble Next Generation

12 months of high-resolution global true color satellite imagery.

Published Oct 13, 2005

Atmosphere Land Water Snow and Ice

Aussie Smoke Plumes Crossing Oceans
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Aussie Smoke Plumes Crossing Oceans

As fires continue to rage in southern and eastern Australia, the smoke has risen high and far across the atmosphere.

Published Nov 20, 2019

Image of the Day Atmosphere Heat Land Drought Fires Remote Sensing

Night Vision: Learning from City Lights
EO Kids

Night Vision: Learning from City Lights

All those sparkly lights reveal a lot about where and how people live on Earth – everything from population, to disaster recovery, to where people are celebrating.

Published Nov 20, 2019 in EO Kids

Human Presence Land Life

Making a Connection in the Kingdom of Tonga
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Making a Connection in the Kingdom of Tonga

Against the odds, the landmass that exploded and oozed into existence in early 2015 is now nearly five years old.

Published Nov 19, 2019

Image of the Day Land Water Volcanoes Remote Sensing

Fires in the Caucasus
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Fires in the Caucasus

Satellites detected what appears to be wildfires in the mountainous region.

Published Nov 19, 2019

Atmosphere Land Fires

Water Vapor
Global Maps Jul 2002 — Nov 2019

Water Vapor

These maps show the average amount of water vapor in a column of atmosphere by month. Water vapor is the key precursor for rain and snow and one of the most important greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

Atmosphere

Permafrost Becoming a Carbon Source Instead of a Sink
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Permafrost Becoming a Carbon Source Instead of a Sink

As global and regional warming continues, winter emissions of carbon dioxide from Arctic lands are offsetting what plants absorb in the summer.

Published Nov 18, 2019

Image of the Day Heat Land Snow and Ice Remote Sensing

Mission: Biomes
Article

Mission: Biomes

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live in a different part of the world? What would the weather be like? What kinds of animals would you see? Which plants live there? By investigating these questions, you are learning about biomes.

Published Oct 5, 2000

Land Life

Earth at Night
Article

Earth at Night

Satellite images of Earth at night have been a curiosity for the public and a tool of fundamental research for at least 25 years. They have provided a broad, beautiful picture, showing how humans have shaped the planet and lit up the darkness.

Published Apr 12, 2017

Atmosphere Land Human Presence Remote Sensing

A Clearer View of Hazy Skies
Article

A Clearer View of Hazy Skies

Industrialization has brought incredible societal advances and difficult pollution problems. From space, we can see skies clearing in some regions and darkening in others. The thin blue line of our atmosphere is still quite vulnerable.

Published Jun 24, 2014

Atmosphere Human Presence Remote Sensing

Long-Term Drought Parches Chile
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Long-Term Drought Parches Chile

Vegetation is withering across Central Chile.

Published Nov 15, 2019

Image of the Day Remote Sensing

One Island, Two Perspectives
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One Island, Two Perspectives

Different lens sizes and camera angles provide wildly different views of Madagascar.

Published Nov 15, 2019

Image of the Day Remote Sensing

Cloud Streets over the Atlantic
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Cloud Streets over the Atlantic

Cold air moving over relatively warm ocean water produced a pattern of clouds that lined up in organized rows.

Published Nov 14, 2019

Image of the Day Atmosphere Water Unique Imagery

The Highest Settlement in the World
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The Highest Settlement in the World

There is no running water, no sewage system, and no garbage disposal, but La Rinconada has one resource worth its weight.

Published Nov 14, 2019

Image of the Day Human Presence

A Night in the Life of Moon Measurers
Notes from the Field

A Night in the Life of Moon Measurers

The air-LUSI instrument, designed to take accurate measurements of the Moon to improve Earth observing sensors, demonstrated its capabilities aboard the ER-2.

Published Nov 14, 2019 in Notes From the Field

Sea Surface Temperature Anomaly
Global Maps Jun 2002 — Sep 2011

Sea Surface Temperature Anomaly

These maps depict how much hotter or cooler an ocean basin was compared to the long-term average. Temperature anomalies can indicate changes in ocean circulation or the arrival of patterns like El Niño and La Niña.

Heat Water

Sea Surface Temperature
Global Maps Jul 2002 — Oct 2019

Sea Surface Temperature

Ocean temperatures can influence weather, such as hurricane formation, and climate patterns, such as El Niño. These maps show the temperature at the surface of the world’s seas and oceans.

Heat Water

EO On This Day
Article

EO On This Day

In honor of our 20th anniversary, we offer a selection of some of the most beautiful, newsworthy, interesting, and scientifically important images from the past 20 years — one for each day of the calendar year.

Published Sep 24, 2019

Atmosphere Heat Land Life Water Snow and Ice

Earth — A Photo-Essay
Article

Earth — A Photo-Essay

NASA has a unique vantage point for observing the beauty and wonder of Earth and for making sense of it. The images in this book tell a story of a 4.5-billion-year-old planet where there is always something new to see.

Published Aug 28, 2019

Atmosphere Land Water Snow and Ice Remote Sensing

Trailing the Pacific Crest from Space
Article

Trailing the Pacific Crest from Space

There is no award for completing the hike from Mexico to Canada through the western United States. But it is clear from the ground and space that the journey through 48 wilderness areas and demanding terrain will change you.

Published Aug 1, 2019

Land Human Presence Remote Sensing

Earth: A Photo e-Book from NASA
Article

Earth: A Photo e-Book from NASA

Swirling white clouds, deep blue oceans, and multicolored landscapes come to life on the pages of NASA’s new photo essay Earth, a collection of dramatic images captured by satellites.

Published Jun 4, 2019

Atmosphere Land Water Snow and Ice Videos

20 Years of NASA Earth Observatory
Article

20 Years of NASA Earth Observatory

Our world is constantly changing. We have evolved with it.

Published May 7, 2019

Videos