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Top 5 Earth Snapshots of NASA's Twitter, Facebook Fans
04.21.11
 
For fans of NASA's social media, every day is Earth Day. NASA posts a continuous stream of new images from the agency’s fleet of 13 Earth-orbiting satellites and many research aircraft to the agency's website as well as on Twitter and Facebook. NASA's collective eyes on Earth are pioneering scientists' ability to see our home planet around the clock in order to better understand how it works.

More than just showcasing inspiring views of our the planet, NASA's advanced scientific spacecraft are dedicated to unraveling the complex factors that drive Earth's climate system and providing far-reaching benefits to society in areas such as disaster management, weather forecasting and agriculture. News and feature articles on all of these activities are also posted to the agencies social media accounts.

The most popular Earth science images posted to NASA's Twitter and Facebook accounts range from breaking news like natural disasters to iconic images of our planet and the just plain beautiful. Here are the top five:

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite took the right image on Mar. 13, 2011, while the MODIS sensor on NASA’s Terra satellite took the left image on Feb 26, 2011 before the earthquake and tsunami. Both images were made with infrared and visible light to highlight the presence of water on the ground. Plant-covered land is bright green, bare earth is tan-pink, and snow is blue. The city of Sendai is brown.Post-Tsunami Flooding in Sendai, Japan
The disastrous earthquake and resulting tsunami that struck Japan on March 11 flooded the coastline near Sendai, as seen in this image from NASA's Aqua satellite.





Hurricane Earl Along the North Carolina CoastHurricane Earl off the U.S. East Coast
A category 3 hurricane named Earl grazed the United States' eastern seaboard on Sept. 2, 2010. This image was captured by NASA's Terra satellite as the storm was about 250 miles south of Cape Hatteras, N.C.





It is easy to see from this true-color image why Ireland is called the Emerald Isle. Intense green vegetation, primarily grassland, covers most of the country except for the exposed rock on mountaintops. Ireland owes its greenness to moderate temperatures and moist air. The Atlantic Ocean, particularly the warm currents in the North Atlantic Drift, gives the country a more temperate climate than most others at the same latitude.The Emerald Isle
A rare cloud-free view of Ireland was captured on Oct. 11, 2010, by NASA's Aqua satellite. The image was featured online on St. Patrick's Day, March 17, 2011.





GOES image of snowstorm over central United StatesMajor U.S. Winter Storm
On Jan. 31, 2011, a large winter storm stretched across the central United States leaving a band of snowfall from Arizona to Wisconsin. The image was produced by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center from data acquired by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's GOES weather satellite.





Late May 2010 brought peacock-hued swirls of blue and green to the North Atlantic. The iridescent waters formed a giant arc hundreds of kilometers across, extending from west of Ireland to the Bay of Biscay. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured this natural-color image on May 22, 2010. The vibrant colors are from tiny organisms, phytoplankton, that grow explosively in the North Atlantic—from Iceland to the shores of France—in the spring and summer.North Atlantic Phytoplankton Bloom
Spring and summer in the North Atlantic bring the sometimes explosive growth of tiny phytoplankton. This bloom captured on May 22, 2010, by NASA's Terra satellite, formed an arc hundreds of miles across.





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