Amazing Timelapse Video from the Space Station

Article Updated: 14 Jan , 2016

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Science educator James Drake built this amazing timelapse video from the perspective of the International Space Station as it flew over North and South America. He created this video by downloading a series of 600 photographs that were available online at the Gateway to Astronomy Photograph of Earth, and then stitching them together into a complete video. You can see more of James work at his blog: infinity imagined.


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universetoday
Member
September 18, 2011 12:36 AM

I’m just entranced by this video… do you see all the thunderstorms? Again… amazing!

SteveZodiac
Member
SteveZodiac
September 18, 2011 6:51 AM

That was the thing that caught my eye more than anything, Obvious, but it never occurred to me that lighting would be so visible from up there.

Debbie Schow
Guest
September 18, 2011 6:59 AM

I was wondering what the lights were…of course, lightning

SteveZodiac
Member
SteveZodiac
September 18, 2011 8:04 AM

er, make that lightNing

Sébastien Pérot
Guest
September 18, 2011 1:36 AM

Impressive.

HeadAroundU
Guest
HeadAroundU
September 18, 2011 1:53 AM

Yeah, it’s great and it needs to be done again and better. 24 pics per second.

It took me like 10 seconds to realize that those blinking lights are lightnings and not Japanese people. :d

Arno Shahmoradian
Guest
September 18, 2011 2:27 AM

I’m speechless…

Meaning Business
Guest
Meaning Business
September 18, 2011 2:57 AM

Space Nerdgasm!

Warren A. Shepherd
Guest
September 18, 2011 3:00 AM

The next best thing to being in space…

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous
September 18, 2011 3:21 AM

At approx. 0:55 a satellite(?) appears for a few seconds at the top center of the field! Simply stunning.

Bonnie Bronleewe
Guest
September 18, 2011 10:38 PM

I think that’s part of the same satellite that is taking the pictures – It’s there all along, but nearly invisible against the black sky until the rays of sunlight light it up just seconds before the sun comes over the horizon.

Dean Barry Postings
Guest
September 18, 2011 3:36 AM

I have just converted this to a wmv file and have it as my desktop wallpaper. using dreamscape in windows 7

SteveZodiac
Member
SteveZodiac
September 18, 2011 6:56 AM

Fantastic, if I get those 600 photos, set them as wallpaper and change every ten seconds it will be almost real time.

Debbie Schow
Guest
September 18, 2011 6:58 AM

A true sense of awe and wonderment…thank you for your work here…amazingly beautiful

Stefan Lamoureux
Guest
Stefan Lamoureux
September 18, 2011 7:24 AM

This is something new! WOW! I love it, really this was a real experience, I felt like I was in space! The lightnings and all, it was crazyyyyyyyy!
Thanks spce folks (not to say astronaut, cosmonaut and all the rest)

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous
September 18, 2011 2:06 PM

Lovely – a wonderful achievement by all of mankind – – but did you all notice that the lightning was far eclipsed by the billions of watts of light from all the cities and towns??
blah blah blah – we are using up all of the fossil fuels at an accelerating rate etc… but to see it is to begin to grasp the reality.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous
September 19, 2011 5:30 AM

You miserable g*t.
There’s always someone that has to ruin everything with an “it’s all going to end horribly you know” ‘prophecy’.
Why can’t you just enjoy the pictures and revel in the science and the achievement?

Roland Prähofer
Guest
September 19, 2011 3:07 PM

I don’t agree. The fact that our predecessor mentioned his concern about the planet only shows that he knows the facts.
Does this concern ruin anything? No.
It’s still beautiful!

Aqua4U
Member
September 18, 2011 6:49 PM

Now that is a far out sequence of images! I like!

In 1981, while flying to Miami from LA, the flight flew south along the Florida peninsula at +30K feet. A similar, though much smaller scale, light show appeared below us as numerous thunderclouds popped off. Very, very cool to see lightning from above, at any altitude!

Debbie King
Guest
Debbie King
September 18, 2011 11:41 PM

wooooooooooooooooow….talk about take me to the moon……when i was a kid, my dad often shown me the beauty of a clear star’y night…..looking up together and counting the stars…but just now that was “heaven”..now i can see the way my dad see’s the other side of the stars…

Nathan
Guest
Nathan
September 18, 2011 11:44 PM

Nice!!! I would like to see this in 3d and a bit slower, and with a beer.

Nathan
Guest
Nathan
September 18, 2011 11:44 PM

Nice!!! I would like to see this in 3d and a bit slower, and with a beer.

Nathan
Guest
Nathan
September 18, 2011 11:44 PM

Nice!!! I would like to see this in 3d and a bit slower, and with a beer.

bodysurfinyon
Guest
September 19, 2011 1:04 AM

Does anyone know the flight path?

proc_kcore
Guest
proc_kcore
September 19, 2011 8:40 AM

It’s described in the YouTube video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=74mhQyuyELQ

Abe Megahed
Guest
September 19, 2011 5:34 AM

This video is fantastic! Love it. Mezmerizing. Hypnotic. Magical.

It does seem to point out how poorly NASA does marketing for itself. I’ve seen a number of wickedly awesome videos created from NASA imagery that were done by people outside of NASA. Why didn’t NASA think to do this (and release it to the public)? On the plus side, it’s cool that NASA made the images available at the Gateway web site, although in not a very user-friendly form, as usual.

Thanks, Mr. Drake (and Mr. Cain)!

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous
September 19, 2011 3:56 PM
> I’ve seen a number of wickedly awesome videos created from NASA imagery that were done by people outside of NASA. Why didn’t NASA think to do this (and release it to the public)? Because there’s broad public agreement that we should cut spending, but if you ask people how we should change the funding for each individual government program, for every one, they say to increase it. But there are two exceptions—two programs people from both parties agrees we should reduce funding for. They are “NASA” and “foreign aid”. http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/08/01/the-fine-print-on-the-debt-deal/ So, politicians are told that if they don’t cut spending, they’ll be fired, but if they also cut spending on any one program, they’ll be fired. Then… Read more »
Michael Bramblett
Guest
Michael Bramblett
September 19, 2011 4:51 PM

Well said.

Dawn B
Guest
Dawn B
September 19, 2011 5:34 AM

our beautiful planet *sigh*

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