Top ten images that defined 2016

From our unique vantage point: the 10 images that defined 2016


It’s impossible to summarize an entire year with a single word, story or description—much less a year like 2016, which was full of political, environmental and global events that will have lasting impacts all around the world. So in the spirit of pictures being worth a thousand words, here are 10 images that DigitalGlobe believes defined 2016. Scroll down to see all 10—we hope they make a lasting impression well into 2017.

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January 2016: Skellig Islands, Ireland

Star Wars: The Force Awakens overtakes Avatar to become the highest-grossing domestic movie of all time. The Skellig Islands (pictured here) were one of the filming locations for the top-grossing film.

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February 2016: Googleplex, Mountain View, CA, USA

Alphabet, the parent company of Google, overtakes Apple as the most valuable company in the world. This image shows the Googleplex, a campus of unique—shaped buildings where Alphabet has offices.

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March 2016: Brussels Airport, Belgium

Three coordinated bombings in Brussels, Belgium kill 32 people and injure around 250 more. ISIS claims responsibility for the attacks. The image shows the Brussels Airport and its runways.

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April 2016: United Nations Headquarters, NYC, USA

175 countries sign the climate change accord on Earth Day at UN Headquarters—a groundbreaking development for environmental conservation efforts. The UN Headquarters building in NYC (where the accord was signed) is in the middle of the image.

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May 2016: Alberta, Canada

The unthinkable destruction of the Fort McMurray wildfire in Alberta is shown by our near-infrared capabilities. Red areas are healthy vegetation and black/gray is burned material. This image is divided down the middle by where the fire stopped burning in a neighborhood: burned side is on the left, unburned on the right.

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June 2016: Orlando, Florida, USA

A mass shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, FL results in the deaths of 49 people. Pulse is in the block on the bottom left corner of the major intersection in this image; it's a black building with cars parked diagonally in front of it.

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August 2016: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

The 2016 Rio Olympics is held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from August 5th through 26th. This image shows the Barra Olympic Park, which was expanded to a cluster of 9 sporting venues used for the 31st 2016 Summer Games.

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October 2016: Port-a-Piment, Haiti

Hurricane Matthew causes extreme destruction in Haiti and the US. The image shows what was left of Port-a-Piment, Haiti after Hurricane Matthew.

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November 2016: Chicago, Illinois, USA

The Chicago Cubs defeat the Cleveland Indians to win their first World Series title since 1908. The image shows the immense crowd at the Victory Rally in Chicago, on Lower Hutchinson Field in Grant Park and along S. Columbus Dr.

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December 2016: Cannon Ball, North Dakota, USA

Army Corps denies an easement for Dakota Access Pipeline and Native Americans declare victory. The image shows the protesters camped out along the river. In the bottom right corner of the image, you can see the burn scar from a grassfire in October.

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