Stunning Earth UHD imagery from new GOES 16 satellite

Finally, a weather satellite showing Earth from space “goes” high definition.

With five-times greater coverage, four-times the spatial resolution, and three-times the spectral channels than earlier generations of GOES-16’s Advanced Baseline Imager can provide more detailed imagery and multi-task in ways that previous GOES imagers could not. For proof of that, consider the following image comparing full-disk images captured by two NOAA satellites — GOES-16 and GOES-13 — at the same time on the same day: 1:07 p.m. EST on January 15, 2017.


GOES-16 and GOES-13 Earth Photo Comparison from Jan 15, 2017. – Click image for hi-res picture

On the left is a color-composite full-disk image from NOAA’s newest geostationary weather satellite GOES-16 (located at 89.5 degrees West longitude), which was created by combining data from the ABI’s 16 spectral channels. By comparison, the imager aboard GOES-13 has just five spectral channels, and their data cannot be combined to produce color composites with this “true color” effect without the inclusion of additional data sets.

In addition to offering more channels, the ABI can provide a full disk image of the Earth every 15 minutes, one of the continental U.S. every five minutes, and has the ability to target regional areas where severe weather, hurricanes, wildfires, volcanic eruptions or other high-impact environmental phenomena are occurring as often as every 30 seconds.

The Moon from Geostationary Orbit

The Moon from Geostationary Orbit

North America/CONUS

North America/CONUS

Advanced Baseline Imager 16 Channels

Advanced Baseline Imager 16 Channels


This 16-panel image shows the continental United States in the two visible, four near-infrared and 10 infrared channels on ABI. These channels help forecasters distinguish between differences in the atmosphere like clouds, water vapor, smoke, ice and volcanic ash. GOES-16 has three-times more spectral channels than earlier generations of GOES satellites.

More here: GOES-16 Image Gallery | NOAA NESDIS

45 thoughts on “Stunning Earth UHD imagery from new GOES 16 satellite

    • Roger. We have been able to see the the effects of the constantly changing climate for thousands and millions of years before people could have had anything to do with it.

  1. The most impressive thing about these images – how much cloud there is… Spit-balling it looks 75% cloud cover… Is that accounted for in all those climate models that have generated so much warming hyperbole?

  2. As a meteorologist I thank you govt agencies. Been reading a lot about this and look forward to seeing it go operational.

  3. What effects will this have on albedo measurement? The planet looks whiter than the early space photos.

  4. Can’t wait to see animated images like you can get from the GOES satellites now. The NOAA says GOES 16 will replace either GOES East or West by November 2017. Hope it is earlier than that. With this resolution, we should be able to even see tornado signs in big thunderstorms. It will appear quite 3D-like as well.

  5. Also…FYI – the current GOES satellites from GOES-8 on have had the ability to do multiple ‘nested’ image scanning like advertised in GOES-R but they have never implemented it.

  6. GOES 16 and its siblings seem a project which no one can consider a waste of taxpayers money. It looks to me that it will help dismantling the CAGW hoax quickly and effectively. Great!

  7. Look at that!!!! There are even more folks at the inauguration than CNN showed on tee-vee… way to go GOES!

  8. How Much $$$ ?
    Originally a Lockheed Martin contract for $1.4B to be operational by early 2016. There were “i$$ues”
    From NOAA website FAQs “What is the total cost of the GOES-R program?
    The total GOES-R lifecycle budget is $10.83B, of which approximately $6.1B was spent by the end of FY2015. The budget encompasses the entire life of the development and operation of the four satellites in the series (GOES-R, S, T & U), which spans more than 30 years, from 2005 to 2036. This also includes all instruments, ground segment work, antenna systems, the construction of a remote backup satellite data facility in West Virginia, new construction to the primary satellite station in Wallops Island, Va. and upgrades to the NOAA Satellite Operations Facility (NSOF) in Maryland. This budget is also used to fund the Environmental Satellite Processing and Distribution System (ESPDS) and a Comprehensive Large-Array Stewardship System (CLASS) to process and archive GOES-R data and ultimately make it available to end users.”
    Besides GOES-R there is also the $11.3 billion Joint Polar Satellite System program that’s scheduled to launch in March 2017 also behind schedule now with more “i$$ues”

  9. So it provides 15 min snapshots of the earth, but manages to capture 5 min images of the US. Must be travelling very f***Ing fast to traverse the US that quick and presumably process the data while it takes a leisurely spin round the table of the globe.

  10. So many data, no human can understand it. Must be filtered through algorithm to be turned into something that makes sense for human. Only very well funded agencies will be able to use it.

  11. Yes, they are very pretty pictures. Been getting pretty pictures from space for a long time, all used as anti-human propaganda. Exactly how are these different?

      • I can spend hours going through satellite and high altitude images, one of my favorite things to do when snowed in.

      • Is there an archive of similar multi-channel high definition rapid-scan animations covering the United States that you can point me to?
        I emphasize the word “animation” because the subject is a meteorology satellite. It wasn’t designed to take pretty pictures for entertainment and awe – that’s just an unavoidable side effect.

      • You can start here, And never forget, google is your friend. Thanks to you I have already spent a couple of hours going through Cassini image archives. Good thing I have no plans for today, thanks to the snow!

      • Sea breeze from the south in SW Aust is known as the Albany Doctor as it is a refreshing breeze at the end of a hot day. You can sometimes hear it coming like a train minutes before it arrives, I live a hundred miles inland and it usually comes at about 6-7pm.

  12. The Australian view is from the Japanese Himawari 8 satellite. What the Australian BoM publishes is a lower resolution version of what is available from a Japanese site. I have written to the
    BoM about why this is so but have not received a reply in 6 weeks or so. My guess is they are spending the money on global warming research instead.

  13. And the global climate computer models can accuratelyforecast Earth’s incredibly beautiful and minutely detailed climate complexity, with ‘High Confidence’, according to the latest UN-IPCC missives?
    Settled Science? The Debate Is Over?
    Bullcrap…. 1200 kilometer gridded algorerhythm Bullcrap.

    • Of course they can…..But only for the next 80 years…’s just next month they’ll get 97% wrong

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