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Live Global Clouds for Google Earth

Global Cloud Layer in Google EArthThis Google Earth add-on displays a near live global cloud layer, automatically updating every 3 hours. 

The global cloud imagery is based on a composite map from GMS, METEOSAT and GOES satellites, provided by xplanet. A script running on my server adds alpha transparency to this.

 Live Global Clouds

The plug-in includes options to view clouds at realistic or exaggerated altitudes within Google Earth.  It also provides an optional drop shadow effect.Live Weather in Google Earth

Placing the clouds at altitude means the layer can be viewed from underneath, giving a slightly more life-like appearance to GE’s built in blue atmosphere effect at low viewing angles. 

Note: As the xplanet website explains about the cloud map:

…These images are not real snapshots nor are they particularly accurate; they are mosaics created from geostationary weather satellite images. The times of the source images may differ by several hours since they are only available at limited times during the day. The cloud maps are not calibrated or carefully geolocated. They are only meant to make the earth look pretty!

Special thanks to Canoro at the Google Earth community for the suggestion of creating drop shadows using a blackened version of the cloud overlay.

10 day Global Cloud Animation

  1. June 14th, 2007 at 16:11 | #1

    very cool. very. Permanently added 🙂

  2. Canoro
    June 21st, 2007 at 04:49 | #2


  3. September 2nd, 2007 at 18:08 | #3

    Very pretty! Thumps up!

  4. Michael Habarta
    October 14th, 2007 at 23:08 | #4


    This is wonderful, especially in Google Flight Simulator.
    On question though: Clouds occur usually below 10km height
    and the plugin allows 4km or 16 km. I think 5km and 10km option would give a more realistic scene, especially in flight mode.

    Anyhow thanks for the fantastic addition.


  5. Joel Lowenstein
    October 20th, 2007 at 15:29 | #5

    I am a little concerned with the lack of visible cloud cover around the globe. We, the entire population of the world, are experiencing drought conditions never before seen in this magnitude. Clouds equal life sustaining rain. The absence of these clouds shows a dramatic shift in the normal climate of the earth, and a dire prediction for mankind. We need to address global warming and climatic weather change immediately, providing it isn’t already too late. God help us!

  6. subhash
    June 5th, 2008 at 12:05 | #6

    k its good proramme.
    but we can see japan map in this google earth.
    u know please tell me how to do it.

  7. siva prakash
    July 18th, 2008 at 11:49 | #7

    superb to know

  8. siva prakash
    July 18th, 2008 at 11:53 | #8

    i’n very exciting to see. what a superb video with explaination. it is very useful to like me a students.

  1. February 4th, 2009 at 15:50 | #1
  2. June 30th, 2012 at 22:47 | #2