It may look like a trip on acid, but this is actually a color-coded weather satellite image showing a tropical storm churning through the Arabian Sea.
The Nov. 29 picture comes from MetOp-A, a polar-orbiting satellite operated by the European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites, or Eumetsat. The neon-colored swirl on the left side of the image is Tropical Storm 5A, which was acting up with gusts of around 47 mph (75 kilometers per hour). The Indian subcontinent appears as a green area toward the right side of the image.
Fortunately, Tropical Storm 5A settled down after this image was captured. This advisory from NASA updates the fate of 5A: The inhabitants of Oman, Iran and Pakistan were spared the effects of a bad meteorological trip.
The psychedelic storm is today's offering from the Cosmic Log Space Advent Calendar, which features views of Earth from space every day from now until Christmas. Check back on Sunday for another "treat" from the calendar, and feast your eyes on these previous offerings:
- The full Cosmic Log Space Advent Calendar
- Dec. 1: An ornament in outer space
- Dec. 2: The masses in Mecca
- Dec. 3: Santa's shrinking domain
- Dec. 4: The monster of Madagascar
- Dec. 5: Antarctica stripped naked
- Dec. 6: Streaking for home
- Dec. 7: Pearl Harbor from above, 1941-2011
- Dec. 8: The rise and fall of the Dead Sea
- Dec. 9: How an eclipse dims Earth
- Hubble calendar, from The Atlantic's In Focus
- 2011 Zooniverse Advent calendar
Connect with the Cosmic Log community by "liking" the log's Facebook page, following @b0yle on Twitter and adding the Cosmic Log page to your Google+ presence. You can also check out "The Case for Pluto," my book about the controversial dwarf planet and the search for new worlds.