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The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth
(NASA Crew Earth Observations)
Astronaut Photography of Earth - Display Record
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IdentificationMission: ISS002 Roll: E Frame: 9147 Mission ID on the Film or image: ISS002
Country or Geographic Name: KAZAKHSTAN
Features: ARAL SEA, DUST STORM
Center Point: Latitude: 45.0 Longitude: 60.5 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)
Stereo: (Yes indicates there is an adjacent picture of the same area)
ONC Map ID: JNC Map ID:
CameraCamera Tilt: High Oblique
Camera Focal Length: 35mm
Camera: E2: Kodak DCS460 Electronic Still Camera
Film: 3060E : 3060 x 2036 pixel CCD, RGBG array.
Percentage of Cloud Cover: 10 (0-10)
GMT Date: 20010630 (YYYYMMDD) GMT Time: 113214 (HHMMSS)
Nadir Point Latitude: 32.0, Longitude: 80.3 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)
Nadir to Photo Center Direction: Northwest
Sun Azimuth: 282 (Clockwise angle in degrees from north to the sun measured at the nadir point)
Spacecraft Altitude: 202 nautical miles (374 km)
Sun Elevation Angle: 26 (Angle in degrees between the horizon and the sun, measured at the nadir point)
Orbit Number: 2917
CaptionsThe Aral Sea has shrunk to less than half its size since 1985. The Aral Sea receives little water sometimes no water) from the two major rivers that empty into it-the Syr Darya and Amu Darya. Instead, the river water is diverted to support irrigation for the regionís extensive cotton fields. Recently, water scarcity has increased due to a prolonged drought in Central Asia. As the Aral Sea recedes, its former sea bed is exposed. The Aralís sea bed is composed of fine sediments-including fertilizers and other agricultural chemicals-that are easily picked up by the regionís strong winds, creating thick dust storms. The International Space Station crew observed and recorded a large dust storm blowing eastward from the Aral Sea in late June 2001. This image illustrates the strong coupling between human activities (water diversions and irrigation), and rapidly changing land, sea and atmospheric processes-the winds blow across the Sea and pick up dust (former sea bottom sediments) as soon as the blowing air masses hit land. Note that the northern boundary of the dust storm occurs along the Syr Darya, where no bottom sediments are exposed.
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Recommended Citation: Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA-Johnson Space Center. "The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth." .