Can you imagine how large an image is, which has dimensions of 86400 pixels wide and 43200 pixels high?
Off hand it is probably difficult for your inner eye to imagine how big that is in reality. To put these wild dimensions into perspective they can be compared to an average computer monitor that displays 1024 x 768 pixels. Maybe you are reading this article with a resolution of a similar size. Therefore, to be able to view the whole image at the same time you would need more than 4700 monitors!
NASA was established more than 50 years ago and has been a world leader in studies of our home planet. They have always been on the sharp edge of this development – In 1972 they were able to boast of being the owner of the first full-colour satellite image of the Earth.
Later in 2002, scientist and data visualizers took four months of observations from the Terra satellite , including the land surface, coastal oceans, sea ice, and clouds, and stitched them together into one photo-like image of the planet. They called this image the Blue Marble, which is the most detailed coloured image of the Earth’s surface that has ever been produced.
The Blue Marble Next Generation is the newest series of 12 monthly cloud-free, global-scale images. The BMNG visualizes seasonal changes of the land surface (spring greening, snow-melt, drought, etc.) in monthly steps, at a resolution of 500 metres per pixel. Each of the 12 images is more than 10 GB in size!
To reach the highest possible quality of detailed image, it is made zoomable by use of advanced eRez Imaging Server technology. The image server algorithms make it possible for ordinary Internet users to study details of images over any Internet Connection, which is normally impossible to work with in a normal way, in effect, as if you were working with your family album.
An image server combined with an interactive viewer allows you to access these huge images without having to download them; simply zoom into the images in your favourite web browser.