It's Christmas morning, and you probably have the day off — but NASA satellites are still hard at work; this just-released image gives a view of the planet's weather this morning as it was seen by the Agency's GOES East satellite.
The GOES satellites, East and West, are in geostationary orbits 22,300 miles above Earth. That allows them to monitor a whole hemisphere's weather 24/7 from a fixed position above the the planet. (GOES stands for Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite.) NASA takes the GOES satellites' readings on cloud cover and overlays them on a full-disk "Blue Planet" view of the oceans and land masses. The result is a hemisphere-wide snapshot of Earth like this one, produced every three hours.
Pretty picturesque, as always. Although that major storm system — shown here churning its way across the U.S. — could be a serious problem for holiday travelers throughout the country's central, southern, and northeast regions in the days ahead.