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(NASA Crew Earth Observations)

Photographing the Earth from the International Space Station

Astronaut Photography of Earth - Display Record


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File NameFile Size (bytes)WidthHeightAnnotatedCroppedPurposeComments
View ISS009-E-12329.JPG 40259639435 No No
View ISS009-E-12329.JPG 86611540540 Yes NASA's Earth Observatory web site
View ISS009-E-12329.JPG 3045321000661 No Yes
View ISS009-E-12329.JPG 87950630322064 No No

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Electronic Image Data

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Mission: ISS009 Roll: E Frame: 12329 Mission ID on the Film or image: ISS009
Country or Geographic Name: DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
Center Point: Latitude: 19.7 Longitude: -70.4 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)

Stereo: (Yes indicates there is an adjacent picture of the same area)


Camera Tilt: 23
Camera Focal Length: 400mm
Camera: E4: Kodak DCS760C Electronic Still Camera
Film: 3060E : 3060 x 2036 pixel CCD, RGBG array.


Film Exposure:
Percentage of Cloud Cover: 10 (0-10)


GMT Date: 20040617 (YYYYMMDD) GMT Time: 191356 (HHMMSS)
Nadir Point Latitude: 20.4, Longitude: -69.2 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)

Nadir to Photo Center Direction: Southwest
Sun Azimuth: 282 (Clockwise angle in degrees from north to the sun measured at the nadir point)
Spacecraft Altitude: 194 nautical miles (359 km)
Sun Elevation Angle: 54 (Angle in degrees between the horizon and the sun, measured at the nadir point)
Orbit Number: 3841


Cabarete Bay, Dominican Republic:
The Dominican Republic occupies the eastern two-thirds of the island of Hispaniola in the Caribbean Sea. The island has a variety of ecosystems ranging from arid plains to tropical rain forests created by three roughly parallel east-west mountain ranges. The northernmost of these ranges, the Cordillera Septentrional, is visible in this astronaut photograph as the dark green region north of the river. Clearcut regions within the Cordillera Septentrional are visible as irregular light green regions interspersed with dark green forested areas.

The northern coastline of the Dominican Republic in this image is a major tourist attraction due to its extensive beaches and coral reefs. Besides recreational opportunities, coral reefs provide protection for bays and critical habitat for numerous economically important marine species.

Cabarete Bay, a popular destination for surfers and divers, is formed by a barrier coral reef. Increased development of the city of Cabarete and deforestation of upland regions has resulted in increased urban and sediment runoff into the bay and impacted the health of the coral reefs. Overfishing of the coral reefs during the 1980s has also contributed to a decline in ecosystem function.

Environmental stress on the Dominican coral reefs is not due solely to human activities. Three major hurricanes have hit Hispaniola during the last 25 years, leading to direct physical destruction of coral reefs as well as large sediment pulses into coastal waters from debris flows (mudslides) and slope failures. Paradoxically, tourism in the Dominican Republic has helped alleviate one aspect of stress on the reefs. Many fishermen now work in tourist hotels for higher pay, decreasing fishing pressure on the coral reefs.

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