Composite satellite image of the Earth's environment, 1997.
© National Aeronautics & Space Administration / Science & Society
Images such as this give scientists a more comprehensive view of the Earth's environment and climate. Four different satellites contributed to the creation of this image. Sea-viewing wide field-of-view sensor (SeaWiFS) provided the land image layer and is a true colour composite of land vegetation for cloud-free conditions. Each red dot over South America and Africa represents a fire detected by the Advanced very high resolution radiometer. The oceanic aerosol layer is based on National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) data and is caused by biomas burning and windblown dust over Africa. The cloud layer is a composite of infrared images from four geostationary weather satellites.