NASA Earth Observing Fleet (August 2014)

  • Released Wednesday, September 10th, 2014
  • Updated Friday, August 25th, 2023 at 12:05AM
  • ID: 4208

This animation shows the orbits of NASA's fleet of Earth remote sensing observatories as of August 2014.

The satellites include components of the A-Train:

Recently launched missions:the International Space Station
and eleven others:
These satellites measure tropical rainfall, solar irradiance, clouds, sea surface height, ocean salinity, and other aspects of the global environment. Together, they provide a picture of the Earth as a system.

This is an update of entry 3725. This update was created both for an annual presentation at the National Air and Space Museum (NASM) and for display on the NASA Center for Climate Simulation (NCCS) hyperwall, a 5 x 3 array of high-definition displays with a total pixel resolution of 9600 x 3240. The version for NASM starts with three flagship missions (Terra, Aqua, and Aura) then fades on the other spacecraft. The hyperwall version shows all of the spacecraft the entire time. The orbits are based on orbital elements with epochs on August 1, 2014. The NASM version is from 00:00:00 GMT to 12:10:26 GMT. The hyperwall version is from 00:00:00 GMT to 07:18:16 GMT.


Please give credit for this item to:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio


This visualization can be found in the following series:

Datasets used in this visualization

Terra and Aqua BMNG (A.K.A. Blue Marble: Next Generation) (Collected with the MODIS sensor)

Credit: The Blue Marble data is courtesy of Reto Stockli (NASA/GSFC).

Dataset can be found at:

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CelesTrak Spacecraft Orbit Ephemeris
GEOS-5 Cubed-Sphere (A.K.A. GEOS-5 Atmospheric Model on the Cubed-Sphere)

The model is the GEOS-5 atmospheric model on the cubed-sphere, run at 14-km global resolution for 30-days. GEOS-5 is described here and the cubed-sphere work is described here

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Note: While we identify the data sets used in these visualizations, we do not store any further details, nor the data sets themselves on our site.