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Astronaut Photography of Earth - Display Record
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IdentificationMission: ISS013 Roll: E Frame: 28610 Mission ID on the Film or image: ISS013
Country or Geographic Name: CAROLINE ISLANDS
Features: NUKUORO ATOLL, INTERNAL WAVES
Center Point Latitude: 3.9 Center Point Longitude: 154.9 (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: 38
Camera Focal Length: 800mm
Camera: E4: Kodak DCS760C Electronic Still Camera
Film: 3060E : 3060 x 2036 pixel CCD, RGBG array.
Percentage of Cloud Cover: 10 (0-10)
NadirGMT Date: 20060531 (YYYYMMDD) GMT Time: 031746 (HHMMSS)
Nadir Point Latitude: 1.7, Longitude: 156.0 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)
Nadir to Photo Center Direction: North
Sun Azimuth: 311 (Clockwise angle in degrees from north to the sun measured at the nadir point)
Spacecraft Altitude: 185 nautical miles (343 km)
Sun Elevation Angle: 58 (Angle in degrees between the horizon and the sun, measured at the nadir point)
Orbit Number: 3047
CaptionsNukuoro Atoll, Federated States of Micronesia
Located just north of the equator (3.85° North, 154.9° East), this classically shaped atoll is part of the Caroline Islands, which stretch northeast of Papua New Guinea in the western Pacific. (The islands are roughly north of Guadalcanal, and southeast of Guam and Truk Islands.) Nukuoro Atoll is one of 607 islands that make up the Federated States of Micronesia, a United Nations Trust Territory under U.S. administration.
The image shows the sandy atoll with 42 distinct patches of vegetation. These patches are located on the northeast and east portions of the atoll that face the dominant easterly winds. The detailed image (white box indicates area shown) shows the larger fields and settlements, which are on the inland side of the largest forest patch, protected from the wind. The land surface is probably slightly higher above sea level here because dunes build up preferentially on wind-facing slopes where beach sand is mobilized by wind. Swells driven by these winds approach from the east-southeast (right) and wrap around the atoll to produce an interference pattern on the downwind side. Water in the lagoon is notably calm in comparison. Coral heads appear in the lagoon, including one in the center of the image.
About 900 people live on Nukuoro, whose lagoon is 6 kilometers (about 3.7 miles) in diameter. Fishing, animal husbandry, and agriculture (taro and copra) are the main occupations. Nukuoro is remote. It has no airstrip, and a passenger boat calls irregularly only once a month. The tiny population speaks its own unique language.
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