new icn messageflickr-free-ic3d pan white
Liege, Belgium at Night (NASA, International Space Station, 12/08/12) | by NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center
Back to photostream

Liege, Belgium at Night (NASA, International Space Station, 12/08/12)

Editor's note: I can't believe I missed this jewel of an image from December. Liege, you certainly know how to make a splash!


A nighttime view of Liege, Belgium is featured in this image photographed by an Expedition 34 crew member on the International Space Station. To paraphrase the old expression, "all roads lead to Liege" -- or at least one could get that impression from this nighttime photograph. The brightly lit core of the Liege urban area appears to lie at the center of a network of roadways—traceable by continuous orange lighting—extending outwards into the rural, and relatively dark, Belgium countryside. For a sense of scale the distance from left to right is approximately 70 kilometers. The region at upper left to the southeast of Verviers includes agricultural fields and forest; hence it appears almost uniformly dark at night. The image was taken using the European Space Agency's Nodding mechanism, also known as the NightPod. NightPod is an electro-mechanical mount system designed to compensate digital cameras for the motion of the space station relative to Earth. The primary mission goal was to take high-resolution, long exposure digital imagery of Earth from the station's Cupola, particularly cities at night. While the official NightPod mission has been completed, the mechanism remains onboard for crew members to use. Liege is the third most populous metropolitan region in Belgium (after Brussels and Antwerp); it includes 52 municipalities, including the nearby city of Seraing.


Image credit: NASA


Original image:


More about space station research:


There's a Flickr group about Space Station Research. Please feel welcome to join!


View more photos like this in the "NASA Earth Images" Flickr photoset:



These official NASA photographs are being made available for publication by news organizations and/or for personal use printing by the subject(s) of the photographs. The photographs may not be used in materials, advertisements, products, or promotions that in any way suggest approval or endorsement by NASA. All Images used must be credited. For information on usage rights please visit:


45 faves
Taken on December 8, 2012