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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: ISS027 Roll: E Frame: 20129 Mission ID on the Film or image: ISS027
Country or Geographic Name: USA-MARYLAND
Features: EASTERN SEABOARD AT NIGHT, PHILADELPHIA, NEW YORK, BALTIMORE, WASHINGTON
Center Point Latitude: 39.0 Center Point Longitude: -76.0 (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: High Oblique
Camera Focal Length: 80mm
Camera: N5: Nikon D3S
Film: 4256E : 4256 x 2832 pixel CMOS sensor, 36.0mm x 23.9mm, total pixels: 12.87 million, Nikon FX format.
Percentage of Cloud Cover: 10 (0-10)
NadirGMT Date: 20110406 (YYYYMMDD) GMT Time: 051921 (HHMMSS)
Nadir Point Latitude: 33.2, Longitude: -72.8 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)
Nadir to Photo Center Direction: Northwest
Sun Azimuth: 10 (Clockwise angle in degrees from north to the sun measured at the nadir point)
Spacecraft Altitude: 186 nautical miles (344 km)
Sun Elevation Angle: -50 (Angle in degrees between the horizon and the sun, measured at the nadir point)
Orbit Number: 2957
CaptionsAtlantic Seaboard Conurbation at Night, United States of America
Note: This caption refers to the image versions labeled "NASA's Earth Observatory web site".
As regional metropolitan areas expand in both physical area and population, they typically aggregate to form economically, politically, and to some extent socially linked entities known as conurbations – the term “megalopolis” has also been used. One of the largest conurbations in the world is located along the eastern coastline of the United States, and has been termed the Atlantic Seaboard Conurbation (ASC). The ASC extends over 1000 kilometers and includes the major economic, governmental, and cultural centers of Boston, MA; New York, NY; Philadelphia, PA; Baltimore, MD; and Washington, D.C.
This astronaut photograph includes every metropolitan area in the ASC except for Boston, MA (located off the image to the northeast of New York, NY). The image was taken during local night, which highlights the position and extent of each metropolitan area along the eastern seaboard by their urban lighting patterns. The establishment and growth of the conurbation was facilitated by transportation networks (railroads, highways, and air travel routes) for transfer of goods, materials, and population between the metropolitan areas.
Two other large metropolitan areas are visible in the image – Norfolk, VA and Richmond, VA at image lower left – but these are not considered to be part of the ASC. In contrast to the city lights that mark metropolitan areas and smaller communities along the sea coast and interior, the Atlantic Ocean appears as a featureless dark region occupying the lower right quarter of the image.
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Recommended Citation: Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA-Johnson Space Center. "The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth." .