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Old Jul 19, 2004, 12:53 AM   #1
THC
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The picture is of Europe and Africa when the sun is setting. Half of the picture is in night. The bright dots you see are the cities lights. The top part of Africa is the Sahara Desert. This was taken by the crew on board Columbia on its last mission.

This photo was taken via satellite, on a cloudless day. Note how the lights are already on in Holland, Paris, and Barcelona, and how it's still daylight in London, Lisbon, and Madrid. The sun is still shining on the Straight of Gibraltar, and the Mediterranean Sea is already in darkness. In the middle of the Atlantic Ocean you can see the Azores Islands; below them to the right are the Madeira Islands; a bit below are the Canary Islands; and further south, close to the farthest western point of Africa, the Cape Verde Islands. Note how the Sahara is huge and can be seen clearly both during daytime and nighttime. To the left, on top, is Greenland, totally frozen.

Amazing.
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Old Jul 19, 2004, 1:03 PM   #2
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That's awesome! So you didn't take it, right?
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Old Jul 19, 2004, 5:03 PM   #3
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No, I am not a Satellite ! I wish I took it !
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Old Jul 20, 2004, 9:56 AM   #4
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please excuse me...this picture is great but i am absolutely skeptical that this picture could be real for several reasons.

- first of all columbia flyes at a low altitude (hundreds of kilometers) and it would be impossible for the columbia crew to take a similar picture of the earth, that image seems to be taken from a geostationary satellite instead (like meteosat that flyes ad 36.000 kilometers). Take a look to real columbia images and movies and you will understand whai i am saying

- i hardly belive that there could be a day in which such a large fraction of the earth is not covered by any cloud and that there could be such an uniform sky and sea conditions

- that picture shows the ocean bottom with uniform ilumination. That is simply impossible because the sunlight does not enter so deep into the sea. The ocean bottom is dim!

brobably it has been obtained using sophisticated techniques and from a large set of individual images taken in different spectral regions and at different times.

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