June 29, 2022 - Summer at Svalbard Archipelago


The rugged, glacier-topped islands of Norway’s Svalbard archipelago sit well inside the Arctic Circle, about 580 miles (930 km) north the city of Tromsø, Norway and about 814 miles (1,310 km) south of the North Pole. Spitsbergen is the largest and western-most of the nine main islands. Other islands include North East Land, Barents Island, Prins Karls Foreland, Dvit Island, Dong Karles Land, Bear Island, and Hopen. While the soils on these islands stay frozen year-round (permafrost), the oceans to the west and south become ice-free part of the year, thanks to the warmth Gulf Stream which reaches the coastal regions. The Gulf stream also moderates air temperatures, which range from 6.8˚F (-14˚C) in the winter to 43˚F (6˚C) in the summer.

On June 25, 2022, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on board NASA’s Terra satellite acquired a true-color image of the Svalbard archipelago. Solid sea ice floated on the Arctic Sea, to the north, fringed by a thin layer of cloud. To the northeast, east, and southeast, filigrees of thin sea ice was scattered over the Arctic and Barents Sea while to the west the waters of the Greenland Sea were completely ice-free.

Image Facts
Satellite: Terra
Date Acquired: 6/25/2022
Resolutions: 1km (396.4 KB), 500m (1.2 MB), 250m (1.2 MB)
Bands Used: 1,4,3
Image Credit: MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC