An amazingly clear night 400 kms above London at midnight and shot with great sharpness and clarity by ESA astronaut Tim Peake from the cupola observatory on the International Space Station (ISS), orbiting the Earth at 28,800kms/hr in 2016 during the Principia Mission.
This was no easy, straight forward piece of photography as Tim had to compensate for the ISS’S speed over the ground, whilst keeping a very steady hand in weightless conditions.
The amount of detail is extraordinary: The orange glow is general street lighting, while the blue lights are the more modern LED lit areas, still contributing too much to the London by Night By Scott Beadle FRAS light pollution over the city.
Black areas denote the parks and reservoirs and the timeless, distinctive meandering flow of the River Thames. It is easy to find Hyde Park, Battersea and Regents Park at centre. Reservoirs at Walthamstow are upper centre and Richmond Park is at the lower left.
What I found enjoyable because its such a good night time image, was how many recognizable areas were identifiable: London City Airport, the O2 Centre, Wembley Stadium, Thames Barrier, Tower Bridge even my ow street near S Kensington and for others, probably many more.
Meanwhile, another Earth Observing Satellite ESA’s Sentinel -2 watching the same area, London, also recorded some of the highest nitrous oxide emissions in Europe, so fellow Londoners enjoy the beautiful views of our great city, but remember there’s still a way to go to get it cleaned up.