The top 5 most amazing satellite images of earth in 2012


posted Wednesday, January 2, 2013 at 10:58 AM EST


Satellite images of earth never cease to amaze. The folks at DigitalGlobe -- one of the world's leading providers of satellite imagery -- know this more than most people. In 1993, the company was given the first federal license to privately operate a satellite system to capture high-resolution digital images of the earth for commercial purposes.

To help showcase some of its amazing images from space, DigitalGlobe is holding a contest where the public can pick its best satellite shots from the past year. Out of 20 possible images captured by the company's three satellites in 2012, the public chose the following five shots by voting on DigitalGlobe's Facebook page.

DigitalGlobe will announce the winning image this month. According to a recent post on its Facebook page, it looks like the satellite shot of the annual Burning Man festival -- which, from space, resembles a Greek amphitheater -- is in the lead.

Which one is your favorite shot? Personally, I like the devastating image of the capsized Costa Concordia (upper right), which made the top 20 but not the final five.

If you like satellite images, check out this story on the first complete color image of earth shot by a satellite, which was auctioned off recently.

(Via Gizmodo and Twister Sifter)

Burning Man Festival in Nevada.
Mt. Fuji, Japan.
The Space Shuttle Endeavour rides on top of a 747 in New Mexico, USA.
A mine sculpture in Northern England known as "The Lady of the North."
Volcanic chain in the Andes Mountains, Chile.