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The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth
Astronaut Photography of Earth - Display Record
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IdentificationMission: ISS006 Roll: E Frame: 45935 Mission ID on the Film or image: ISS006
Country or Geographic Name: RED SEA
Features: REEFS, OIL FILMS, SABAYA I., SUNGLINT
Center Point Latitude: 18.5 Center Point Longitude: 41.0 (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: 34
Camera Focal Length: 180mm
Camera: E4: Kodak DCS760C Electronic Still Camera
Film: 3060E : 3060 x 2036 pixel CCD, RGBG array.
Percentage of Cloud Cover: 10 (0-10)
NadirDate: 20030411 (YYYYMMDD)GMT Time: 084820 (HHMMSS)
Nadir Point Latitude: 20.7, Longitude: 41.9 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)
Nadir to Photo Center Direction: South
Sun Azimuth: 153 (Clockwise angle in degrees from north to the sun measured at the nadir point)
Spacecraft Altitude: 209 nautical miles (387 km)
Sun Elevation Angle: 76 (Angle in degrees between the horizon and the sun, measured at the nadir point)
Orbit Number: 1058
CaptionsAbove and Under the Red Sea:
This unique photograph of shallow Red Sea waters off the coast of Saudi Arabia gives us a glimpse of both the coral reefs under the surface, and the texture and movements of surface waters. On the left side of the image we see through the water column to the reefs below the surface. On the right side of the image, the sun reflects off of microscopic oily films formed by a combination of natural biological sources and human activities on the sea surface (visit Oceanography from the Space Shuttle for more info). The films are concentrated by surface water movements and variably dampen surface capillary waves, which effect how the sun’s light is reflected. This creates patterns of brighter and darker reflections when viewed from orbit. These patterns trace the complex surface water dynamics along the coast.
The Red Sea and Gulf of Aden include over 17,400 km2 of coral reefs, or 6% of the world’s total (World Atlas of Coral Reefs: http://www.unep-wcmc.org/marine/coralatlas/). The World Resources Institute has estimated that 60% of the reefs in the Red Sea and Arabian Gulf are threatened by coastal development, overfishing, and the threat of oil spills by the heavy tanker traffic. The stretch of reefs shown here is near Qutu Island, south of Al-Qunfudhah, and is relatively isolated compared to other reefs in the region.
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