When I was a kid then during summer nights we used to sleep under open sky. Those were days when twinkling of stars looked so awesome and fascinating. Nights are really beautiful.

Have you ever seen earth during night? I know, how can we see earth. That’s why NASA have released amazing photographs taken from outer space. These images are taken from Suomi NPP satellite. The true awesomeness about these pictures are, it shows how our cities and states glows during night. The brightness shows how much energy a city consumes during night.

How Satellites can shoot in dark?

I know you will say they have the technology that’s how they can take picture during night. Yes, very true but a little knowledge about how its done is worth reading. The technology behind taking photos during night is infra-red. So, they have used Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite better known as VIIRS. By using various filtering techniques which helps us to capture less bright or dim light.


Are all bright spots indicate cities?

Well, not all. There are lot more things. These bright spots includes cities, gas flares, large spread of fire and a little moon light.

What these images are called?

These images are known as black marbles.

This is how UK looks during night.

This is how UK and Berlin looks during night.

Where can we watch these black marbles?

If you have loved watching black marble images then you can explore your city on google maps too. Google called it “earth at night“. NASA and NOAA have released these imaginaries few days back and google have included these awesome images into their maps repository.

You will be amazed to know that VIIRS is a very powerful camera and these photographs are of size 2 Terabytes (1 terabyte almost equal to  1000 GB). Click Here to Watch Black Marble on Google Maps.

Tell your friends about your finding.