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Satellite image of the month - 2018

Showcasing some of the Met Office's satellite imagery from around the world showing weather in action, new views of the world and extra commentary on how we collect and create the images from our Satellite Applications team.

January 2018: Two days in Winter

07/08 January 2018 - Snow on the mountains seen from 830 km up.

The UK and Ireland were mostly cloud-free on 7th January 2018, only for the Southern part of the UK to be blanketed by low cloud on 8th January, with the Highlands of Scotland clearing. This is shown in these false-colour images from the VIIRS instrument aboard the NOAA/NASA satellite, Suomi-NPP. The two images were made from data collected a day apart as the satellite passed over the UK on 7th (left image) and 8th January (right image).  This type of false-colour image highlights where snow is lying on the ground. They are created using five channels in the near-infra-red part of the spectrum so things look a little different to what the human eye would see. The white snow can be differentiated from the white cloud as it now appears in a bright orange colour, while cloud ranges between blue, white and yellow depending on the cloud properties.

The Alps have seen very high snowfall this winter and a cloud-free day over the mountains later in January showed the snow cover on the higher ground.

Credits: Met Office (images) , NOAA/NASA (data).