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Get daily dose of pictures of ‘Earth’ on NASA’s new website

You can now watch images of our planet on NASA's website so that people from every continent see pictures of the full, sunlit side of the Earth every day

The new website was launched this Monday so that people in the whole world can see pictures of the full, sunlit side of the Earth every day. The new website also has an archive of EPIC images that can be looked up by date and continent.

The data from all 10 wavelengths are posted through a website hosted by the Atmospheric Science Data Center at NASA’s Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia. All images are in the public domain.

EPIC was built by Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Technology Center, in Palo Alto, California. Using an 11.8-inch (30-centimeter) telescope and 2048 x 2048 CCD detector, EPIC measures in the ultraviolet, visible and near-infrared areas of the spectrum.

EPIC is equipped with a four megapixel CCD camera and telescope. EPIC’s shots of the Earth would enable scientists to observe and analyze daily variations over our blue planet in such features as vegetation, ozone, aerosols, and cloud height and reflective.

NASA will post a minimum of 12 pictures everyday with new color images of Earth received 12 to 36 hours earlier by NASA’s Earth Polychromatic Imaging Camera (EPIC). Each daily sequence of images will show the Earth rotating and showing the whole globe over the course of a day.
A NASA camera shoots pictures everyday, set up one million miles away on the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR), a partnership between NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the U.S. Air Force.

The main aim of NOAA’s DSCOVR mission is to maintain the nation’s real-time solar wind monitoring capabilities as they are important to keep the accuracy and lead time of space weather alerts and forecasts from NOAA. NASA has two Earth-observing instruments on the spacecraft.
Earth’s colored images are created by putting together three separate single-color images to develop a photographic-quality image as good as the one with a 12-megapixel camera. It clicks a series of 10 images using various narrowband filters to produce a variety of science products. The red, green and blue channel images are used to create the color images. Each image is about 3 megabytes in size.

“The effective resolution of the DSCOVR EPIC camera is somewhere between 6.2 and 9.4 miles (10 and 15 kilometers),” said Adam Szabo, DSCOVR project scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.

Since Earth is extremely bright in the darkness of space, EPIC has to take very short exposure images (20-100 milliseconds). The much fainter stars are not visible in the background as a result of the short exposure times.
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