In Scott Manley's new video 173 Kiloton Explosion Over Bering Sea Was Asteroid Breaking Up a bit after 01:30 he says

The good news is that in these days of near-limitless data storage capabilities the internet has a long memory, and we can look at the Himawari satellite which is a weather satellite in geostationary orbit that covers the area in question.

I normally view Himawari images from https://www.jma.go.jp/en/gms/ and if you open an image in a new window and look at the URL you can guess how to change the date and time into the past. That works for several days or a week, but not three months.

Question: Where are three-month-old or possibly even year-old Himawari weather satellite images available to the public?

As an exercise, per:

the event was at 2018-12-18 23:48:20 UTC and 56.9N 172.4E.


1 Answer 1


You need to go this site - Himawari Archive and then it depends on what category of user you are and then obtain the imagery that way.


On OP's request I am recording the information I got from JMA when I wanted to access Himawari's images. You need to specify what kind of user you are

a) research b) commercial.

Presuming research you can obtain Himawari images from the following institutions as mentioned in the original link I provided

The following four Japanese institutions operate Himawari-8 data archiving and redistribution services on a best-effort basis for research, development and education:

1) JAXA Himawari Monitor (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) http://www.eorc.jaxa.jp/ptree/index.html Himawari-8 Data Download and Processing System (Data Integration and Analysis System Program)

2) http://himawari.diasjp.net/expert/ Center for Environmental Remote Sensing (CEReS)

3) Chiba University http://www.cr.chiba-u.jp/databases/GEO/H8_9/FD/index_jp.html

4) Himawari Satellite Project (NICT : National Institute of Information and Communications Technology) http://sc-web.nict.go.jp/himawari/

Users must register to download data from each institution and observe the individual data usage policies.

If you are asking how I would do it then I must mention I use a python software called SatPy

Then I go to this URL - JAXA FTP URL( I think it is only visible if you are registered) and then download the data for whatever year I want. Then write a small script using a SatPy reader and view the data.

NOTE For the last points you are better off asking questions either on SatPy and for the data itself writing email to JAXA.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ This is really great! Thanks for the in-depth answer, I'll be taking it out for a spin today. $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Mar 21, 2019 at 2:08
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks, and you make a good point! $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Mar 21, 2019 at 4:21

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