Since the creation of this blog in 2005, our page featuring satellites in orbit around Earth has remained our most popular page on the site with over 650,000 page views in the past eight years.
There have also been a number of other excellent satellite-tracking programs that we’ve featured on here, such as SES Astra and SightSpaceStation.
Now we’re introducing you to the GE Satellite Tracker from Joseph Armbruster, which is a bit different; instead of showing you various satellites in Google Earth, it allows you to add your own.
It allows you to calculate the orbits, generate the KML and configure it via single python file and one configuration file. Joseph is continually improving and streamlining the program, which is completely free to use.
You can try it for yourself and read the full documentation on the GE Satellite Tracker site.
In the screenshot above you can see three distinct windows. On the right is a map view to show the current location of the satellite, with an embedded Google Earth window below to the view from the satellite. On the left is a very innovative feature that allows you to choose your location and then see the satellite overlaid on Street View. While you obviously can’t see the satellite with the naked eye, it’s a brilliant way to show users where a satellite is located relative to their current position.
The site only has a handful of satellites available for now, but I expect they’ll add more in the future. Check it out for yourself at SightSpaceStation.
(via Google Maps Mania)
We’ve discussed the impressive “blue marble” overlay here on GEB a few times. It’s a beautiful overlay that makes Google Earth look awesome. The “pretty earth” update earlier this year made it much less important, but it’s still a fun overlay to play with.
Now NASA has released the “black marble” — an amazing view of the earth covered in darkness with only city lights glowing.
Here’s how they did it:
This new global view and animation of Earth’s city lights is a composite assembled from data acquired by the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (Suomi NPP) satellite. The data was acquired over nine days in April 2012 and thirteen days in October 2012. It took satellite 312 orbits and 2.5 terabytes of data to get a clear shot of every parcel of Earth’s land surface and islands. This new data was then mapped over existing Blue Marble imagery to provide a realistic view of the planet.
360Cities.net has been a part of Google Earth for nearly four years, when their panoramas were first added to the [Gallery] layer of Google Earth (it was later moved to the [Photos] layer). Members of 360Cities.Net have added thousands of panoramas in the 360Cities layer Google Earth, and now have one that shows off a great image from Mars Curiosity!
While the 360Cities panorama isn’t in the layer in Google Earth yet, Google has recently added a Mars Curiosity layer to the Mars mode for Google Earth. They have also added different panorama from Mars Curiosity to the software. If you click the planet icon at the top of the screen, then choose [Mars], you’ll get a fresh new set of layers. Drill down to [Mars Gallery] > [Rovers and Landers] > [MSL Curiosity Rover] > [Panoramas] and you can see a stunningly sharp panorama in there.
I expect we’ll see the 360Cities panorama in the Mars layer at some point, but in the meantime we strongly suggest you check out all of the other amazing layers that are featured in Google Mars to help you explore the red planet. You should also check out the full collection at 360cities.net, featuring tens of thousands of beautiful panoramas from across the globe — and now across the universe!