Europe at Night (NASA, International Space Station, 08/10/11) [Explored]

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Editor's note: I've added this to our "NASA Views Earth at Night" Flickr photoset: AND...we are humbled and honored by the Explore ranking. THANK YOU!

This night time view of northwestern Europe is featured in this image photographed by an Expedition 28 crew member on the International Space Station. Several of the oldest cities of northwestern Europe are highlighted in this photograph taken at 00:25:26 Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). While the landscape is dotted with numerous clusters of lights from individual urban areas, the metropolitan areas of London (United Kingdom), Paris (France), Brussels (Belgium) and Amsterdam (Netherlands) stand out due to their large light "footprints". The metropolitan area of Milan, Italy is also visible at lower left. This photograph was taken with a short camera lens, providing the large field of view recorded in the image. To give a sense of scale, the centers of the London and Paris metropolitan areas are approximately 340 kilometers distant from each other. The image is also oblique, or taken while looking outward at an angle from the station; this tends to foreshorten the image, making the distance between Paris and Milan (approximately 640 kilometers) appear less than that of Paris to London. In contrast to the land surface defined by the city lights, the English Channel at right presents a uniform dark appearance. Similarly, the Alps (bottom center) to the north of Milan are also largely devoid of lights. While much of the atmosphere was clear at the time the image was taken, the lights of the Brussels metropolitan area are dimmed by thin cloud cover.

Image credit: NASA

Original image:

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VisualUniverse, bswise, d'acqua, and 154 other people added this photo to their favorites.

  1. Herby Crus 43 months ago | reply

    Great capture! Fave!

  2. Serge Freeman 43 months ago | reply


    Seen in my contacts' photos. (?)

  3. Chris Devers 43 months ago | reply

    I've tried to tag some of the cities, but the perspective is all distorted so it's hard to tell what's what.

  4. Chris Devers 43 months ago | reply

    I see France!

  5. Martin Gauchard 43 months ago | reply

    Magnifique !!!!!

  6. 123you 43 months ago | reply


  7. Saaty Photography 43 months ago | reply

    This is a fantastic image! I love the composition and color. Your photostream is great, too. Keep up all the awesome work. Cheers!

  8. bartholowaty | Photography 42 months ago | reply

    Excellent and very nice Image
    Stunning composition
    amazing work!!


    Please take time to check my photos.
    If you like them please add me as contact.

  9. FRITZLA 39 months ago | reply

    Amazing!! I posted this photo here:

  10. Nicolas_Bousquet 9 months ago | reply

    yeah you made a mistake with munich, you tagged an italian city, probably florence or milano and the tag of milano is a city on the coast of the sea, so probably monaco ( we can see corsica by the weak light in the middle of the big black zone in the lower left corner)

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