london by night
February 27, 2003 8:52 AM   Subscribe

The crew of the ISS captured a fantastic picture of London at night [1M jpg]
posted by stbalbach (24 comments total)
Beautiful, but too bad it's so blurry on top! What a gyp.
posted by freakystyley at 8:55 AM on February 27, 2003

posted by stbalbach at 9:09 AM on February 27, 2003

Looks like a car windshield shattered by a bullet.
*flunks Dr. Rorschach's exam*

Where is Austin Power's pad anyway?
posted by 111 at 9:10 AM on February 27, 2003

In a similar vein--is that spooky or what?
posted by y2karl at 9:11 AM on February 27, 2003

whoa, y2karl! What an interesting picture and a great find.
posted by Vidiot at 9:39 AM on February 27, 2003

I'm a little confused. (But that just maybe my inability to orient myself). I'm trying to make out the Thames cutting through the city but I can't make it out... can someone orient this correctly for me?

Sitting on Bartholomew Lane right now...
posted by rshah21 at 10:02 AM on February 27, 2003

wait, that can't be real - no campfires even?
posted by gottabefunky at 10:03 AM on February 27, 2003

Looks like the southern M25 is at a standstill as usual..
posted by marvin at 10:16 AM on February 27, 2003

damn, great link.

on preview - hell yes, marvin!
posted by triv at 10:30 AM on February 27, 2003

Sunset from space.
posted by gottabefunky at 10:47 AM on February 27, 2003

rshah21, if you look at the high-res version of the picture, you can just make out the Isle of Dogs (there's the really big blur of light that is central London, and then there's another small blip at the top of the Isle, just to the right).

I used to live on the south side of the Thames at the western end of the Isle; and I remember the EastEnders intro map far too well ;)

posted by lowlife at 10:58 AM on February 27, 2003

The Blue Marble

This spectacular “blue marble” image is the most detailed true-color image of the entire Earth to date. Using a collection of satellite-based observations, scientists and visualizers stitched together months of observations of the land surface, oceans, sea ice, and clouds into a seamless, true-color mosaic of every square kilometer (.386 square mile) of our planet.
posted by 10sball at 10:59 AM on February 27, 2003

Don't know if everyone knows this or not, so I thought I'd add my $0.03 (Canadian). If you have a Passport account (or a AIM account) you can use MapQuest to access satellite photos of whatever street address you enter (U.S. only, I believe).

If you want to see something really interesting, check out the area around Groom Lake, Nevada (Area 51). Huge portions of Nellis Air Force Base and the Nevada Test Site (nearby) are simply blacked out. Other parts are visible, but you can't zoom in any further than level 8 (try it out!).

One particularly interesting section looks like small pockets of agriculture in the middle of the desert. If you're into conspiracy theories, check out the interesting top-secret agro farms in the middle of the nowhere (also zoom-inhibited).

Area 51 (the white is Groom Lake itself, just south you can barely make out landing strips -- it appears that one crosses the lake)

Nellis Air Force Agriculture

At zoom level 9, here is a section east of Area 51 where the map goes black.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 11:21 AM on February 27, 2003

Additionally, the stuff above isn't standard practice for the U.S. military. For example, you are free to check out the B-52's parked at Barksdale Air Force Base, for example.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 12:15 PM on February 27, 2003

Civil, when I try to check out your B-52s, all I see is more agriculture. They're on to you.
posted by COBRA! at 1:29 PM on February 27, 2003

Great post, these pictures are beautiful.
posted by Orange Goblin at 1:51 PM on February 27, 2003

Can anyone speak for the authenticity of the picture that gottabefunky linked to?

I didnt think the terminator was that clearly defined, and there is a remarkable lack of clouds in that pic.
posted by Irontom at 2:28 PM on February 27, 2003

I'm skeptical about Gottabefunky's picture too. A total lack of clouds anywhere at all in Western Europe or Africa? And are the lights really that bright compared to sunlight? That, and the URL is a little suspicious too.
posted by wanderingmind at 2:58 PM on February 27, 2003

Wanderingmind: It's definately not true-colour, but by taking such a spectrum that it passes through the clouds, adjusting the colours, pulling a few filters over it and adjusting brightness/contrast you can get a picture pretty close to that. But agreed, it isn't what you'd see if you looked out of the ISS window.
posted by fvw at 3:21 PM on February 27, 2003

Look at some of the images available from links here, and you'll see they have a startling similarity to what Gottabefunky found.
posted by alumshubby at 3:24 PM on February 27, 2003

gottabefunky's link looks pretty CG to me...
posted by Orange Goblin at 4:24 PM on February 27, 2003

wait, that can't be real - no campfires even?

The DPRK only has enough money to illuminate the borders.
posted by eddydamascene at 4:27 PM on February 27, 2003

Wow, looks like the M25 is jammed up as usual.
posted by chrid at 1:45 AM on February 28, 2003

uh.. no.

Although the M25 may looked jammed, it only appears that way because not all of it has lighting. The section you see on the west has lights which cease at Beaconsfield (A40) and down southerly way near Woking, or thereabouts.

I doubt you can see the Thames because it too is not illuminated. duh.
posted by Frasermoo at 2:07 AM on February 28, 2003

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