Daily NASA MODIS Satellite Imagery for Google Earth

MODIS Daily Satellite Imagery Overlays in Google EarthThe power of WMS (Web Mapping Service) is really showing with several new imagery layers coming out from NASA. Someone called ‘OnEarthWMS’ at the GEC just yesterday posted some really cool links showing the hi-resolution color satellite photos from the MODIS (Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) Terra and Aqua satellites. These network links show all the photos from the previous 24 hours updated daily, and show more detail as you zoom in:

Note: You should only turn on one of these layers at a time or they may interfere.
Implementing transparency on the blank spots in the MODIS satellite would allow the rest of the Earth to show through. He also shows an example of what this would look like with a Blue Marble underlayed with the MODIS data.
These links are definitely network links worth saving in your “My Places”. These are powerful examples of how GE can be used to show large dataset updated frequently and more useful as you zoom in closer. Not only that, but this is yet another step towards near real-time satellite photography being made available for GE. This is the kind of work I would expect the new NASA/Google relationship to produce.

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.


  1. Once again, another fabulous overlay done first by EarthBrowser 2 years ago.

  2. hi, a very useful tool, under the filename 3Dsolar at google earth hacks, has had these network links since 2005! The file, available here:
    comes with the terra and aqua daily updates, a global infra-red image, historic terra and aqua images of various disasters, cloud formations, fires and dust storms (you could spend hours playing with this feature alone!), one meter resolution ortho mapping of the US, USGS mapping of cities ( Landsat 7 infra-red band 1, and US navy cloud-top imagery… all in one file!
    This IS a must have for ‘My Places’.

  3. oh yeah, but these new ones show more detail as you zoom in! AWESOME!!

  4. If you go to http://onearth.jpl.nasa.gov/ there’s a link to the WMS server, http://wms.jpl.nasa.gov/wms.cgi You can use this directly in GE as the source for an image overlay which gives a variety of layers to choose from.

  5. Matt: I believe NASA World Wind had it first

  6. earthbrowser has a little more rez as you zoom in…

  7. Very cool Frank!

  8. geoff pemberton says:

    Sorry I find all this VERY disappointing.I would love to see more than a black veiw of any part of the world

  9. a theft took place in a parking lot yesterday can i capture the image today?

  10. Awesome!
    NASA MODIS now has a clearer resolution in the zooming process.
    Great CGI works as well!

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