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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 ISS022-E-74881.JPG 108802640437 No No
View ISS022-E-74881.JPG 256883540360 Yes Yes NASA's Earth Observatory web site
View ISS022-E-74881.JPG 164328442882929 No No

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Mission: ISS022 Roll: E Frame: 74881 Mission ID on the Film or image: ISS022
Country or Geographic Name: CHILE
Center Point: Latitude: -36.8 Longitude: -73.1 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)

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


Camera Tilt: 29
Camera Focal Length: 800mm
Camera: N2: Nikon D2Xs
Film: 4288E : 4288 x 2848 pixel CMOS sensor, RGBG imager color filter.


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


GMT Date: 20100227 (YYYYMMDD) GMT Time: 133538 (HHMMSS)
Nadir Point Latitude: -35.3, Longitude: -74.0 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)

Nadir to Photo Center Direction: Southeast
Sun Azimuth: 74 (Clockwise angle in degrees from north to the sun measured at the nadir point)
Spacecraft Altitude: 192 nautical miles (356 km)
Sun Elevation Angle: 35 (Angle in degrees between the horizon and the sun, measured at the nadir point)
Orbit Number: 620


Smoke Plumes over Concepcion, Chile, Following Large Earthquake

This detailed astronaut photograph of the Chilean cities of Concepción and Hualpén was acquired from the International Space Station approximately seven hours after a magnitude 8.8 earthquake occurred offshore 115 kilometers (71 miles) to the north-northeast. Much of the Chilean coastline is located above the boundary between the converging Nazca and South American tectonic plates. This type of plate boundary is known as a subduction zone. Such zones frequently experience moderate to strong earthquakes as one tectonic plate overrides the other. The largest earthquake worldwide during the past 200 years (magnitude 9.5 in May 1960) had a source region approximately 230 kilometers (140 miles) south of the February 27 quake.

While the image is not detailed enough to see damage to individual buildings or roadways, some indicators of earthquake damage are visible, especially in the large version of the image. A dark smoke plume is visible at image lower left near an oil refinery in Hualpén. At image lower right, parts of the road bed of a single-lane bridge over the Río Biobío appear to have collapsed. A smaller, white smoke plume is visible at image right near the Universidad de Concepción. Smoke, probably related to the earthquake, was observed over Santiago in images acquired by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer on NASA’s Terra satellite less than one hour after this astronaut photograph was taken.

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