The Most Astonishingly Beautiful Pictures of Earth from Space

Illustration for article titled The Most Astonishingly Beautiful Pictures of Earth from Space

We've seen some absolutely stunning images of our planet from space before — but now, NASA and a slew of Facebook members have definitively chosen the best of all time.

Advertisement

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of NASA's Landsat series of Earth observation satellites, NASA asked the public to vote for the five best images out of the 120 in its Earth As Art series. Above is Lake Eyre (pronounced "air") in Northern Australia, where a lake bed has only been filled with water three times in the past 150 years.

Here are the other four winners:

Illustration for article titled The Most Astonishingly Beautiful Pictures of Earth from Space
Advertisement

Algerian Abstract — those pale yellow streaks are actually "wind-blown sand."

Illustration for article titled The Most Astonishingly Beautiful Pictures of Earth from Space

"Meandering Mississippi" — the blocky shapes of towns, fields and pastures surround the Mississippi river.

Illustration for article titled The Most Astonishingly Beautiful Pictures of Earth from Space
Advertisement

The Yukon Delta — those things that look like blood vessels are rivers and deltas spreading out from the river.

Illustration for article titled The Most Astonishingly Beautiful Pictures of Earth from Space
Advertisement

"Van Gogh From Space" — greenish phytoplankton swirl around Gotland, a Swedish island.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter

DISCUSSION

RemusShepherd
RemusShepherd

We've talked about the Earth as Art project before. I was the person who came up with the idea, and I did about 80% of the images in the first show. I also did 'Van Gogh' above; it was in the third show.

The choices seem odd to me because we have so many beautiful pictures. Go look at the USGS's art gallery, some of them are fantastic. I'd have chosen different picts as the most beautiful — I mean, look at the Von Karman image — but the public has spoken.

It's fun stuff. I'm glad to be one of those scientists who get a chance to make art!