NASA has released a spectacular time-lapse video of the Earth prepared with images captured by the Earth Polychromatic Imaging Camera (EPIC). In 365 days, more than three thousand images have been captured by the camera.
EPIC is a climate observing camera placed on NASA’s Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) satellite placed about one million miles away from the Earth. It is situated in the middle of the Sun and the Earth at a special gravitational balance point called the Lagrangian point.
Sun rises in the west and sets in the east at least 13 times in front of EPIC every 24 hours. DSCOVR is permanently positioned between the Earth and the Sun with the EPIC capturing images every two hours of the face of the Earth lit by the Sun. This enables EPIC to capture the movements of cloud, disturbances in the ocean, etc. which can be analyzed to provide weather forecast and detect weather pattern around the world.
EPIC has been capturing images of the successful launch of DSCOVR in February 2015. It captures every image in a set of 10 wavelengths of light. The three primary colors – blue, green and red were combined to produce images for the time-lapse video visible to human eyes. EPIC is capable of capturing extremely detailed, high-quality images. Scientists can detect the details of water flow in a river, structures of sand in deserts and complicated patterns in the cloud with utmost accuracy. The ozone layer of the Earth is also monitored using EPIC’s imagery.
The DSCOVR satellite mission is a joint initiative by the US Air Force and the NASA’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA). It can monitor and issue an advanced warning about solar events and upcoming solar winds or solar storms. This satellite is a replacement of USA’s main warning system for upcoming solar events, the seventeen-year-old ACE satellite.