I was wondering is the sunlight reaching from the general direction east? I came to this conclusion because the image is so dark on the west side however I am not 100% sure.GOES16 imagery

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    $\begingroup$ This is a visible image display and I was wondering at this time the sunlight was reaching the U.S. from the general direction of west or east? I was thinking east because it is bright on the east side and dark on the west side. $\endgroup$ Feb 16, 2020 at 20:52
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    $\begingroup$ I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it belongs in space.stackexchange.com $\endgroup$ Feb 16, 2020 at 21:03
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    $\begingroup$ @trondhansen this is an Earth observation satellite and the data is a measurement of the state of the Earth. In fact many questions here are about other planets and they are still on-topic. Sometimes questions can be on-topic in more than one site, it's not a problem. Also, usually (but not always) questions are not migrated until the community closes them as off topic and they are considered on-topic somewhere else and then moderators get involved. We don't say "should have been migrated" as a close reason. $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Feb 17, 2020 at 4:35
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    $\begingroup$ This is a reasonable question and I feel it's on-topic here. I'm voting to leave it open! $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Feb 17, 2020 at 4:36
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    $\begingroup$ This question is on-topic for Earth Science, although as I understand it rather basic, the Sun rises in the east therefore in the morning it's bright in the east but dark in the west, but perhaps I misunderstand the question. $\endgroup$
    – gerrit
    Feb 17, 2020 at 9:52

1 Answer 1


Yes. The time stamp says that the image is taken at 13:45Z, which means the sun is overhead in the Eastern Atlantic (12:45 PM local time in Cabo Verde and the Azores). In Winnepeg, near the upper arrow, it is 7:45 AM and still in darkness.

Being winter in the NH, places that are more southerly like Louisiana and east Texas in the US have light while places at the same longitude further north do not.

You can tell that the image is taken in winter from the south-west to north-east slope of the terminator (i.e. the line separating the light and dark areas, see discussion here).

  • $\begingroup$ Awesome thank you so much! $\endgroup$ Feb 17, 2020 at 2:34
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    $\begingroup$ Thanks to JeopardyTempest for filling in a few details. $\endgroup$
    – M Juckes
    Feb 18, 2020 at 7:44

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