UrtheCast Releases HD Videos of Earth from Space

UrtheCast is a company that captures satellite imagery from cameras mounted on the International Space Station (ISS). We mentioned them back in March 2012 when they first announced that they would be mounting two video cameras on the ISS. Since then, they have successfully mounted the two cameras and on Wednesday 17th June, they released the first sample videos. They say it is 4K video with a resolution of 1m. They also claim it is the first full colour HD video of earth from space.

We would have liked to put the videos in Placemarks in Google Earth, but the video player requires Flash, which Google’s internal browser does not support.

Boston, USA. Notice how the tall buildings appear to move because the ISS is moving overhead. Much longer videos of a single location would not be possible.

For the rest of the UrtheCast sample videos see their blog post.

Skybox Imaging, which was acquired by Google last year, also captures HD video, but theirs is black and white. You can see samples of Skybox videos on their YouTube channel.

About Timothy Whitehead

Timothy has been using Google Earth since 2004 when it was still called Keyhole before it was renamed Google Earth in 2005 and has been a huge fan ever since. He is a programmer working for Red Wing Aerobatx and lives in Cape Town, South Africa.






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Comments

  1. That’s a nice marketing claim they have there, but nothing more. “HD” is a fuzzy definition (HD is anything larger than SD), so no, it’s certainly not the first full color HD video of Earth from Space. HD videos of Earth have been produced for at least as long as HD cameras – handheld internally or mounted externally – have been in space, in particular on the ISS, which is many many years. Even before ISS construction even started, there famously have been IMAX cameras used on Shuttle flights, and those aren’t exactly SD either (yeah I know they’re “film” and not “video”, but that’s a bit besides the point, isn’t it?). And who knows what classified stuff has been up there.

    • The key is the quality of the image and or video, they do both. With a one meter resolution from leo, this is pretty high quality. SpaceX has been doing HD imagery but black and white not color. Again, to qualify their claim, they are the first “commercial” company to provide HD quality 1meter resolution imagery again not government owned. This is digital by the way, not film as you point out but it is again digital HD video.

  2. So when will we have semi-live videos of Earth?

  3. Jajaj jajjaja it´s April?..



PLEASE NOTE: Google Earth Blog is no longer writing regular posts. As a result, we are not accepting new comments or questions about Google Earth. If you have a question, use the official Google Earth and Maps Forums or the Google Earth Community Forums.