Planetary Maps (Global Images)

by Steve Albers

This image processing outlined on this page is being done to provide "value-added" global planet & satellite images in connection with NOAA's Science On a Sphere® project. The ones I've processed are mostly via some IDL procedures that I put together. Other images available from various groups and individuals on the internet are being used "as-is". The images (in cylindrical projection) are generally centered on +/-180 degrees longitude and are 2K (2048x1024) pixels in size unless otherwise noted. Several of the satellites are modeled as triaxial ellipsoids. In these cases the maps are constructed on the ellipsoid using planetocentric coordinates. Some of these are works in progress to be updated in the future.

Mercury | Venus | Earth | Mars | Asteroids | Comets | Jupiter | Saturn | Uranus | Neptune | Pluto | Universe

Mercury

Below is an 8K map of Mercury I constructed by reprojecting and overlaying three Mariner 10 mosaics created by
Mark S. Robinson of the Center for Planetary Sciences, Northwestern University on top of a previous map combining Mariner data from the USGS with Earth-based radar data. A 4th Mariner 10 Mosaic over the southern hemisphere from JPL was used as well near the south pole. The radar data comes from Arecibo Observatory (courtesy John Harmon). This was compiled by Phil Stooke and combined with the USGS Mariner map by Bill Gray. A couple of processed color mosaics from Ted Stryk were also used from Mariner 10. Several MESSENGER wide angle camera images (inbound and outbound) were then utilized from the first two Mercury flybys. MESSENGER images are courtesy of NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington. MESSENGER Flyby 1 outbound imagery post processed into a mosaic by Gordan Ugarkovic was very helpful. A south polar mosaic of MESSENGER images from orbit has recently been added. In general lower resolution color is being combined with higher resolution black and white.


JPEG, PNG- (image updated 10/21/2011)
Other MESSENGER based maps have been recently produced.

Venus

Below is a 4K map of Venus I constructed by overlaying three left-ward looking Magellan mosaics created by Emily Lakdawalla of
The Planetary Society on top of a previous map from Calvin Hamilton . Bright areas are high in radar reflectivity. About 80% of the cylindrical area is covered by Emily's high-resolution data while the rest is filled in with intensity information from Calvin's cylindrical map.


JPEG, TIFF- (image updated 6/14/2005)

I have some other global Venus images, one of which is shown here. This is a combination of two images. The hue information comes from Calvin Hamilton's cylindrical map . The shaded-relief (intensity) information is used from A. Tayfun Oner's Venus topography map . Tayfun's black & white map was warped from a Mercator onto the Cylindrical projection shown here at a resolution of 1000x2000 pixels. Red and white colors are highest and the light source comes from the right (east) side.


JPEG (1.8MB), TIFF (6MB)- (images updated 5/12/2004)

Earth

We are making real-time weather satellite movies (~4K) by processing half-hourly stitched global IR McIDAS images obtained from the Aviation Weather Center. These are being enhanced with independently obtained perspective views of MTSAT full-disk images. In addition we are constructing sea surface temperature and anomaly movies from the NCODA analyses. Other geophysical datasets include real-time GFS forecast model displays.

We are making a population movie for the Earth based upon a DVD movie from the Population Connection as well as the "Blue Marble" image (updated 3/9/2005). Population growth is depicted (using every 10th DVD frame) from 17AD to 1949AD.

Moon

We are using this map (8K) of the Moon created by Jens Meyer. He processed a map derived from Clementine spacecraft data that is available on the USGS PDS web site. The version linked here was darkened slightly from the original (updated 2/11/2005).

Mars

I'm currently working on a feature name overlay for the Mars map used on SOS. The fonts are "pre-distorted" to display well on SOS, Celestia, etc. (updated 2/25/2012).

Phobos

We are using a Voyager / USGS map of Phobos from (from
David Seal's web site at JPL).

We are planning to also use this map from Phil Stooke.

Deimos

We are using a map of Deimos from Phil Stooke's website.

Asteroids

Vesta

We are using a map of Vesta compiled by
Adam Hurcewicz as posted on unmannedspaceflight.com. This uses imagery from NASA's Dawn spacecraft.

Ida

We are using a map of Ida compiled by
Philip Stooke (reference: Stooke. P., Stooke Small Bodies Maps V2.0. MULTI-SA-MULTI-6-STOOKEMAPS-V2.0. NASA Planetary Data System, 2012) as shown in this image.

Gaspra

We are using a map of Gaspra compiled by
Philip Stooke (reference: Stooke. P., Stooke Small Bodies Maps V2.0. MULTI-SA-MULTI-6-STOOKEMAPS-V2.0. NASA Planetary Data System, 2012) as shown in this image.

Mathilde

We are using a map of Mathilde compiled by
Philip Stooke (reference: Stooke. P., Stooke Small Bodies Maps V2.0. MULTI-SA-MULTI-6-STOOKEMAPS-V2.0. NASA Planetary Data System, 2012) as shown in this image.

Eros

We are using a map of Eros compiled by
Philip Stooke (reference: Stooke. P., Stooke Small Bodies Maps V2.0. MULTI-SA-MULTI-6-STOOKEMAPS-V2.0. NASA Planetary Data System, 2012) as shown in this image.

Itokawa

We are using a map of Itokawa compiled by
Philip Stooke (reference: Stooke. P., Stooke Small Bodies Maps V2.0. MULTI-SA-MULTI-6-STOOKEMAPS-V2.0. NASA Planetary Data System, 2012) as shown in this image.

Comets

81P/Wild-2

We are using a map of Comet 81P/Wild-2 compiled by
Philip Stooke (reference: Stooke. P., Stooke Small Bodies Maps V2.0. MULTI-SA-MULTI-6-STOOKEMAPS-V2.0. NASA Planetary Data System, 2012) as shown in this image.

Jupiter


We are utilizing a spectacular Jupiter movie from Cassini (2D Interpolated) for the Science on a Sphere. I applied some simple processing to produce this 28MB tar file (updated 7/7/2004) containing separate GIF images for the 197 frame color movie. The resolution of the image is 2 pixels per degree and the original animiated GIF was cropped to 360x720 pixels. The data void space near the poles (outside of +/-68 degrees latitude) was filled with a neutral color.

We are also using this Cassini map to construct a higher resolution still image. The image was resized to 4K and the color balance was adjusted in a subjective attempt (as suggested by Bjorn Jonsson) to better match the visual appearance of Jupiter in a telescope.


JPEG, TIFF- (image updated 3/31/2006)

Io

This global color mosaic of Io contains Voyager and Galileo data. I combined five individual mosaics to produce this detailed global (2048x4096) map. About 40% of this image (mainly in the projovian hemisphere) comes from
Laika's cylindrical color map . The color balance was modified slightly to make it look more "realistic" based on Galileo's colors. Intensities were also adjusted slightly over broad regions so it would blend better with the other images.

For the second image a near-hemispheric Galileo mosaic was used for about 40% of the map. This was reprojected from a vertical perspective projection (spacecraft view - similar to orthographic) onto the cylindrical lat/lon grid. For the third image a portion of this Galileo mosaic was reprojected to cover about 10% of the map. The color balance was adjusted and saturation was subdued to undo the "enhanced" color in the posted Galileo image. The fourth image comes from a portion of this Galileo mosaic, reprojected to cover the remaining 10% of the map. This fourth color image was augmented by higher resolution intensity information from a black and white USGS map.

Seams were blended gradually between the various images to reduce their prominence. Some further color adjustments are being made to compensate for the extended wavelength range of the Galileo filters.


JPEG (1MB), TIFF (25MB)- (images updated 7/20/2004)

We are also using a similar map from the USGS that is of very high quality.

Europa

I am working on a global color map of Europa using Voyager and Galileo data. The current 2048x4096 version is a blending of information from two other maps. The first is in color from Bjorn Jonsson and the second is a high-resolution B&W USGS map on a cylindrical projection. The hue and saturation comes from Bjorn's map. The intensities come from a blend of the USGS data and Bjorn's map. The proportion of blending is varied on a regional basis. Bjorn's map was warped based on about 60 tiepoints so that it registers better with the USGS map.


JPEG (900K), TIFF (25MB)- (images updated 8/24/2004)

Ganymede

We are using a modified higher resolution version of this map of Ganymede created by Bjorn Jonsson. The modifications include localized areas where details from a USGS map were blended in. The navigation of Bjorn's image was also adjusted slightly to better match the USGS map.

Callisto

We are using a modified version of this map of Callisto created by Bjorn Jonsson.

Saturn

We are using a map of Saturn from Bjorn Jonsson's web site.

Following is a series of satellite maps representing a combination of Voyager and Cassini spacecraft imagery. Navigation information used in reprojecting Cassini images was obtained in part from Mark Showalter's Cassini Satellite ephemeris website. A helpful image summary is being used courtesy of The Planetary Society. Matching of topographic features was also done to help in registering the images. It is anticipated that the typical accuracy of the navigation of the images is roughly within the 1-2 degree range. Please note that some of the Cassini images used are "raw" images that are uncalibrated and unprocessed.

Mimas

Below is a map of Mimas I constructed by reprojecting and overlaying about 15 Cassini images representing ~90% coverage on top of the official mosaic found on the Cassini web site (used for ~10% coverage). The Cassini images and mosaics are from NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute.


JPEG, PNG, PNG (with feature labels)- (image updated 12/20/2012)

Enceladus

Below is an 8K map of Enceladus I constructed by reprojecting and overlaying about 50 Cassini images on top of a
previous map using Voyager images from Philip J. Stooke and Jens Meyer. Two Cassini raw images from a mid-January 2005 flyby were used along with eight "raw preview" images, three "raw" images, one raw wide-angle image and one mosaic from a mid-February 2005 flyby. Nine PDS images, three raw preview images, two false color images, a high-res mosaic, and one raw image were used from the March 2005 flyby. An untargeted flyby in May 2005 provided a look at the south polar region. About a dozen images (a combination of PDS, raw, and processed) from the July 2005 flyby dramatically improved the south polar coverage. Images from November 2006 and September 2007 are included. A few images from the March, August, and October 2008 flybys are also being utilized as well as from November 2009. Color information from a regional mosaic is being added. The Cassini images are from NASA / JPL / Space Science Institute. Navigation information from the PDS along with an Enceladus map from the JPL Photojournal (PIA08417) was used to help position many of the images. Thanks to Jason Perry of the University of Arizona and Emily Lakdawalla of the Planetary Society for help with the PDS data/images.


JPEG, PNG- (image updated 12/18/2009)

Enceladus Map Sheet

Here is an earlier version (from 2/23/2006) of the Enceladus image shown above presented as a map sheet. This includes polar and cylindrical projections along with feature labels. The map sheet processing was done by Jason Perry from the University of Arizona.


Full Size, Half Size - (image updated 11/22/2006)

I'm currently working on a feature overlay. This is a 4K image with the feature names on top where the fonts are "pre-distorted" to display well on SOS, Celestia, etc. (updated 2/25/2012).

Tethys

Below is a 4k map of Tethys I constructed by reprojecting and overlaying a high-resolution Cassini mosaic from a recent flyby on top of a previous map using Voyager images from Jens Meyer . At high sun angles, the color from the Cassini image was merged with the intensity from the Voyager map. In addition two raw B&W images are included from March 9, 2005, one raw image from June 27, 2005 as well as processed images from Dec 15, 2004 and May 20, 2005. A mosaic was added from the September 24, 2005 flyby. Raw images are included from the December 2005 and February 2006 flybys, including an improved view of Odysseus. Data from July 23, 2006, September 25, 2006, June 2007, July 2007, August 2007, September 2007, and September 2008 have been added. A processed color image (from Gordan Ugarkovic) plus some raw images are included from May 2008. A Dec 2008 processed image by "Exploit Corporations" of Unmannedspaceflight.com was utilized. A Cassini imaging team produced map was used as a positional reference. The Cassini images are from NASA / JPL / Space Science Institute.


JPEG, TIFF- (image updated 12/19/2008)

Dione

Below is an 8K map of Dione I constructed by reprojecting and overlaying images from recent Cassini flybys on top of a
previous map using Voyager images made by Paul Schenk of the Lunar and Planetary Institute. A Voyager image processed by Ted Stryk was also incorporated. A mosaic was added along with a raw image from the October 11, 2005 flyby. A raw image is included from the September 30, 2007 flyby as well as a mosaic constructed by "nick1drake" of UnmannedSpaceflight.com. With the September 2010 flyby showing some northern regions, a mosiac by "Exploitcorporations" of UnmannedSpaceflight.com was used along with a couple of Saturnshine raw images. The Cassini images are from NASA / JPL / Space Science Institute.


JPEG, PNG- (image updated 10/22/2010)

Rhea

Below is an 8K map of Rhea I constructed by reprojecting and overlaying images from recent Cassini flybys. Positional information was obtained from a variety of sources, including spacecraft navigation data, a
previous USGS map consisting of Voyager images (from David Seal's web site at JPL), and the official map on the Space Science Institute web site. The Cassini images are from NASA / JPL / Space Science Institute.


JPEG, PNG- PNG (with feature labels)- (image updated 12/31/2012)

Titan

Below is a map of Titan I constructed by reprojecting and overlaying three high-resolution Cassini images/mosaics from recent 2007 flybys on top of a previous (December 2006) map from the
NASA Cassini mission . The image from October 22, 2007 was post-processed by Gordan Ugarkovic. The black & white images were generally taken through near infrared and polarizing filters to pierce the haze on Titan.


JPEG, TIFF- (image updated 7/8/2008)

In addition we are using a map of Titan with radar overlain from Jason Perry and the Cassini Radar Team. We have an earlier colorized version of this (4/14/2005) map of Titan created by Celestia Software developer Fridger Schrempp. Fridger produced this by combining a variety of mosaics and other imagery from NASA's Cassini mission.

The Cassini images are from NASA / JPL / Space Science Institute.

Iapetus

Below is an 8K map of Iapetus I constructed by reprojecting and overlaying preliminary images from recent Cassini flybys on top of a previous USGS map consisting of Voyager images. Four color images and several black and white images, including two illuminated by Saturnshine are included from Cassini. A December 2004 image post-processed by Gordan Ugarkovic has been included. Several images are now included from the November 2005 (including one post-processed by Ted Stryk), January 2006, April 2006, July 2007, non-targeted flybys. A couple of leading hemisphere images are included from the September 2007 targeted flyby. An image from the Voyager mission (processed by Ted Stryk) is being used in the northern hemisphere. A super-resolution Cassini view featuring the southern hemisphere processed by Ted Stryk is included from the July 2004 flyby. Thanks to Gordan Ugarkovic for his June 26, 2006 processed PDS image that was helped with navigation on the Saturn facing hemisphere. A July 8, 2007 stacked image by "Ian R" from unmannedspaceflight.com was also used for navigation. The September 2007 flyby is included with a number of raw images, two press release mosaics, as well as a portions of several large mosaics constructed from raw and PDS imagery by Gordan Ugarkovic. Imagery from September 2009 is included. The Cassini images are from NASA / JPL / Space Science Institute. The color balance in the various component images was adjusted to blend into the hue and saturation present in the "near-true" color image PIA06167.


JPEG, PNG- (image updated 9/30/2009)

Phoebe

We are using
this map of Phoebe produced by the Cassini mission imaging team (CICLOPS), in association with NASA / JPL / Space Science Institute.

Uranus

We are using a map of Uranus from
James Hastings-Trew's site .

Miranda

We are using a map of Miranda from
William Johnston's web site and the USGS from Voyager data (see David Seal's web site at JPL).

Ariel

Here is a map of Ariel starting with a dataset from the USGS using Voyager data (see David Seal's web site at JPL). This has been overlain with a number of reprojected and processed Voyager images courtesy of Ted Stryk. Some of Ted's images are specially processed nighttime ones described in this abstract for a 2008 LPSC poster.


JPEG, TIFF- (image updated 3/28/2008)

Umbriel

We are using
this map of Umbriel produced by Phil Stooke using Voyager data.

Titania

Below is a map of Titania I constructed by reprojecting and combining three processed Voyager images courtesy of
Ted Stryk . A map of Titania from the USGS using Voyager data (see David Seal's web site at JPL) was used as a positional reference. One of Ted Stryk's images was specially processed to show nighttime details as described in this abstract for a 2008 LPSC poster.


JPEG, TIFF- (image updated 10/21/2011)

Oberon

Below is a map of Oberon I constructed by reprojecting and combining several processed Voyager images courtesy of
Ted Stryk with a map of Oberon from the USGS using Voyager data (see David Seal's web site at JPL). The USGS map was used underneath as a basemap showing areas near the equator.


JPEG, TIFF- (image updated 4/22/2008)

Neptune

We are using a map of Neptune from Bjorn Jonsson's web site.

Triton

Below is a 4K map of Triton I constructed by reprojecting and merging a
Voyager mosaic from JPL with a map of Triton from William Johnston and A. Tayfun Oner. Intensity information from the hi-res mosaic was combined with color information from William Johnston's map. Saturation has been adjusted downward.


JPEG, PNG- (image updated 3/6/2012) | 4K PNG with feature overlay

Pluto

We are using a map of Pluto from
William Johnston's web site.

Universe

While we're at it, we can expand our view to look at the observable universe as seen from the outside.

Cosmic microwave background radiation

Below is a map of the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation I constructed by reprojecting the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) image from a Mollweide projection onto a cylindrical projection. The
WMAP image is from NASA and the WMAP Science Team.


JPEG, TIFF- (image updated 4/27/2005)

Copyright: The images on this page are intended for personal non-commercial use only. For additional information please contact me at Steve.Albers@noaa.gov.

For Celestia users here are some versions with a zero degree central longitude

For Celestia and other users here are some versions with feature names overlain. The font is "pre-distorted" so it shows up well on a spherical projection. The nomenclature for the feature maps is from the USGS Gazeteer

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