Since the “space-age” has started in the early 1960s, astronauts have taken more than 1.8 million photographs of the Earth from orbit, and about one-third of them (approximately 600,000) have been taken at night. But they don’t always know what they are looking at. You can help, announced NASA.

Night Image, Japan
Night Image, Japan from space.

The photo above (id: ISS040-E-98889) captured on August 16, 2014, as the International Space Station was passing over the western Pacific Ocean, by the Expedition 40 crew. Bruce Boucek was the first to identify the cities in this puzzler image. James Titmas, Yumiko Stettler, and Jyo Sano also correctly identified the Nagoya area.

The Complutense University of Madrid (UCM) is leading Cities at Night, a citizen-science project to catalog such nighttime images. So far, hundreds of volunteers have classified nearly 20,000 images for the three-part project.


M. Özgür Nevres

I am a software developer, a former road racing cyclist, and a science enthusiast. Also an animal lover! I write about the planet Earth and science on this website, You can check out my social media profiles by clicking on their icons.

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