A Fast-Moving Fire in Kgalagadi
Image of the Day Sep 18, 2021

A Fast-Moving Fire in Kgalagadi

A grass fire in southwestern Botswana raced through the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park in August.
Nicholas Soaks the Gulf Coast
Image

Nicholas Soaks the Gulf Coast

The slow-moving storm has been pulling in tropical moisture.

Published Sep 15, 2021

Image of the Day Atmosphere Water Severe Storms Remote Sensing

Unusual Snowfall in Greenland
Image

Unusual Snowfall in Greenland

The remnants of Hurricane Larry dropped abundant snowfall on Greenland just as the summer melt season was coming to an end.

Published Sep 15, 2021

Image of the Day Atmosphere Land Snow and Ice

Fossil Fjords in Namibia
Image

Fossil Fjords in Namibia

Ice that carved a network of valleys 300 million years ago has long since disappeared, but the original shapes of the valleys remain.

Published Sep 14, 2021

Image of the Day Land Snow and Ice Remote Sensing

A Meeting of Ice and Dunes
Image

A Meeting of Ice and Dunes

Shadows accentuate the topography in and around Ulaagchinii Khar Nuur in Mongolia.

Published Sep 13, 2021

Image of the Day Land Snow and Ice

Hurricane Ida Leaves a Trail of Oil
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Hurricane Ida Leaves a Trail of Oil

Federal and state agencies and private companies are working to find and contain oil leaks in the Gulf of Mexico.

Published Sep 10, 2021

Image of the Day Water Severe Storms Human Presence

Rapid Intensification for Typhoon Chanthu
Image

Rapid Intensification for Typhoon Chanthu

The potent storm in the Western Pacific intensified from a tropical depression to a super typhoon in less than 48 hours.

Published Sep 9, 2021

Image of the Day Land Water Severe Storms Human Presence

Mapping Methane Emissions in California
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Mapping Methane Emissions in California

Using precision instruments and new mapping and machine-learning tools, a research team has been pinpointing sources of the greenhouse gas.

Published Sep 9, 2021

Image of the Day Human Presence Remote Sensing

A Changed Landscape in Southern Louisiana
Image

A Changed Landscape in Southern Louisiana

Hurricane Ida left behind large new patches of open water that scientists will be watching closely to see if vegetation and healthy marshes return.

Published Sep 8, 2021

Image of the Day Land Water Severe Storms Human Presence Remote Sensing

Ice Persists in the Northwest Passage
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Ice Persists in the Northwest Passage

The decline of sea ice in the Arctic has made the passage increasingly viable for ships, but it’s still not always smooth sailing.

Published Sep 8, 2021

Image of the Day Land Water Snow and Ice

Tournament Earth: The Landsat Games
Article

Tournament Earth: The Landsat Games

50 Years. 9 million scenes. One champion.

Published Sep 7, 2021

Land Water Human Presence Snow and Ice Remote Sensing

Zuiderzee Works
Image

Zuiderzee Works

Where the Netherlands meets the North Sea, there is an impressive confluence of natural and man-made features.

Published Sep 6, 2021

Image of the Day Land Water Human Presence Remote Sensing

How to Interpret a Satellite Image: Five Tips and Strategies
Article

How to Interpret a Satellite Image: Five Tips and Strategies

What do you do when presented with a new satellite image? Here's what the Earth Observatory team does to understand the view.

Published Nov 18, 2013

Remote Sensing

Spotlight on the Galápagos Islands
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Spotlight on the Galápagos Islands

Sunglint helps tease out features that are not often visible.

Published Sep 5, 2021

Image of the Day Land Water

Flash Floods from Ida Swamp the Northeast
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Flash Floods from Ida Swamp the Northeast

Many of the worst-hit areas in Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York saw 6 to 10 inches of rain fall in just a few hours.

Published Sep 2, 2021

Image of the Day Atmosphere Water Severe Storms Remote Sensing

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

This Isn’t My First Rodeo
Notes from the Field

This Isn’t My First Rodeo

Engineer Andy Hynous is back in the saddle in Fort Sumner, New Mexico, where NASA’s Scientific Balloon Program is making flights for the fall 2021 balloon campaign.

Published Sep 2, 2021 in Notes From the Field

SeaHawk Mission Proves CubeSats are  Viable for Collecting Scientific Data
Earth Matters

SeaHawk Mission Proves CubeSats are Viable for Collecting Scientific Data

Scientists are pleased with the compelling images and data collected by a shoebox sized satellite.

Published Aug 31, 2021 in Earth Matters

Water

Chlorophyll
Global Maps Jul 2002 — Jun 2021

Chlorophyll

Chlorophyll is used by algae and other phytoplankton--the grass of the sea--to convert sunlight and carbon dioxide into sugars. These maps show chlorophyll concentrations in the ocean, revealing where phytoplankton are thriving.

Life Water

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

Picturing Earth From the Space Station
EO Kids

Picturing Earth From the Space Station

Find out what it takes to be a space photographer on the International Space Station (ISS), play a data detective game and build your landform recognition skills like an astronaut.

Published Aug 25, 2021 in EO Kids

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

Carbon Monoxide
Global Maps Mar 2000 — Feb 2017

Carbon Monoxide

When fuels such as coal, wood, and oil burn incompletely, they produce carbon monoxide. The gas is spread by winds and circulation. These maps show monthly averages of CO in the lower atmosphere.

Atmosphere

August Puzzler
Earth Matters

August Puzzler

The August 2021 puzzler is out. 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 Aug 24, 2021 in Earth Matters

NASA Earth Observatory Goes to the Beach
Article

NASA Earth Observatory Goes to the Beach

Summer is beach season in the northern hemisphere. But even if you're a regular at your local swimming hole, you probably haven't seen too many beaches from this perspective. See the satellite and space-station views of various shorelines from across the United States. No sunblock necessary.

Published Jul 22, 2021

Land Videos

Land Surface Temperature
Global Maps Feb 2000 — Jul 2021

Land Surface Temperature

Land surface temperatures rise and fall with the heat of the Sun, and they represent how hot or cold the surface would feel to touch. These maps show daytime land temperatures as measured from space.

Heat Land

A Celebration of Clouds: From Space, Earth Has an Elegant Atmosphere
Article

A Celebration of Clouds: From Space, Earth Has an Elegant Atmosphere

Clouds can be a nuisance when scientists are trying to observe features on Earth's surface. But at other times, clouds are exactly what they want to see. These images highlight some of the more unusual and beautiful clouds observed in recent years from space.

Published Jun 21, 2021

Atmosphere 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 Aug 28, 2020

Land Life

EO Explorer
Article

EO Explorer

Since 1999, Earth Observatory has published images and stories from all over our planet. Now you can explore more than 11,000 images in a different way: by location.

Published Jun 2, 2021

Land Water Remote Sensing

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 Apr 28, 2021

Atmosphere Land Water Snow and Ice Remote Sensing

Aerosol Size
Global Maps Jan 2005 — Sep 2016

Aerosol Size

Sea salt, volcanic ash, dust, wildfire smoke, and industrial pollution are types of airborne aerosols. Natural aerosols tend to be larger than human-made aerosols. These maps show when and where aerosols come from nature, humans, or both.

Atmosphere

Snow Cover
Global Maps Mar 2000 — Jun 2021

Snow Cover

Snow and ice influence climate by reflecting sunlight back into space. When it melts, snow is a source of water for drinking and vegetation; too much snowmelt can lead to floods. These maps show average snow cover by month.

Snow and Ice

Picturing Earth: Astronaut Photography In Focus
Article

Picturing Earth: Astronaut Photography In Focus

For 20 years, astronauts have been shooting photos of Earth from the space station. Like everything the astronauts do, they are trained for this job. And like everything they do, there is purpose and intention behind it.

Published Feb 8, 2021

Human Presence Remote Sensing Videos