A Look at Maui in Near-Infrared Light

August 12, 2008


Provided by: David Harrington, University of Hawaii, Institute for Astronomy
Summary Author and Editor: David Harrington

This photo of the West Maui Mountains, looking west, was taken during a flight to Kahului, Hawaii. It was captured with a near-infrared optimized camera. The usual near-infrared-cutoff filter, found in normal digital cameras, was removed and replaced with a visible-cutoff filter, allowing the camera to image beyond 750 nm and into the near-infrared wavelengths. In a typical sensor, there are red, green and blue pixels, each with a different response to infra-red light. These different responses give rise to the very abnormal color seen here on this image. Since the sensors looks beyond the red wavelengths of the visible part of the spectrum, atmospheric haze is reduced. For example, even Molokai, the island just to the west of Maui, can be seen clearly. Without such a filter, the many miles of air and haze would obscure the view. Photo taken on March 31, 2008.