Suomi NPP VIIRS "Black Marble" Product Tracks Power Outages in Odisha India from Cyclone Fani

May 8, 2019

Suomi NPP VIIRS "Black Marble" Product Tracks Power Outages in Odisha India from Cyclone Fani

This interactive GIS map from the NASA Disasters Mapping portal lets you view Suomi NPP VIIRS "Black Marble" imagery before and after Cyclone Fani hit the region. This data helps disaster responders track which regions were affected by power outages. 

VIIRS Black Marble imagery of nighttime lights in Bhubaneswar India, comparing April 30th and May 5th 2019. Credit: NASA Earth Observatory, Ranjay Shrestha / NASA GSFC

VIIRS Black Marble imagery of nighttime lights in Bhubaneswar India, comparing April 30th and May 5th 2019. Credit: NASA Earth Observatory, Ranjay Shrestha / NASA GSFC

In early May 2019, Tropical Cyclone Fani tore through the state of Odisha in eastern India as one of the worst storms to hit the country since 1999. The cyclone brought winds of more than 200 kilometers (120 miles) per hour when it made landfall on the morning of May 3. The storm caused several deaths and left millions of people homeless in the cities of Puri, Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, and Khurda. Fani also damaged or destroyed energy infrastructure and many buildings, leaving around 3.5 million households without electric power for days after the storm hit.

The images on this page are data visualizations of where the lights went out across some of the worst affected areas in Odisha. The images show city lighting on April 30 (before the storm) and May 5, 2019, two days after Fani made landfall. The images above show Bhubaneswar, the capital and largest city in the state. The images below show nighttime lights in Cuttack, the second largest city, which lies just north of Bhubaneswar.

VIIRS Black Marble imagery of nighttime lights in Bhubaneswar India, comparing April 30th and May 5th 2019. Credit: NASA Earth Observatory, Ranjay Shrestha / NASA GSFC

VIIRS Black Marble imagery of nighttime lights in Bhubaneswar India, comparing April 30th and May 5th 2019. Credit: NASA Earth Observatory, Ranjay Shrestha / NASA GSFC

These images were made from data acquired by the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) on the Suomi NPP satellite. VIIRS has a “day-night band” that detects light in a range of wavelengths from green to near-infrared, including reflected moonlight, light from fires and oil wells, lightning, and emissions from cities or other human activity. A team of scientists from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center and Marshall Space Flight Center processed and corrected the raw VIIRS data to filter out stray light from natural sources (for example, moonlight) and from atmospheric interference, such as dust, haze, and thin clouds.