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Photographing the Earth from the International Space Station

Astronaut Photography of Earth - Display Record

STS068-260-73

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File NameFile Size (bytes)WidthHeightAnnotatedCroppedPurposeComments
View STS068-260-73.JPG 37958640480 No No ISD 1
View STS068-260-73.JPG 148073540424 Yes Yes NASA's Earth Observatory web site
View STS068-260-73_2.JPG 161304540423 Yes Yes
View STS068-260-73_2.TIF 491515612741284 No No
View STS068-260-73.TIF 510421813091298 No No

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Electronic Image Data

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Identification

Mission: STS068 Roll: 260 Frame: 73 Mission ID on the Film or image: STS68
Country or Geographic Name: CHILE
Features: LAKE SAN RAFAEL, SAN QUINTIN GLACIER
Center Point: Latitude: -47.0 Longitude: -74.0 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)

Stereo: No (Yes indicates there is an adjacent picture of the same area)
ONC Map ID: T-18 JNC Map ID: 104

Camera

Camera Tilt: 35
Camera Focal Length: 250mm
Camera: HB: Hasselblad
Film: 5046 : Kodak, natural color positive, Lumiere 100/5046, ASA 100, standard base.

Quality

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

Nadir

GMT Date: 19941010 (YYYYMMDD) GMT Time: 203805 (HHMMSS)
Nadir Point Latitude: -48.1, Longitude: -74.7 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)

Nadir to Photo Center Direction: Northeast
Sun Azimuth: 290 (Clockwise angle in degrees from north to the sun measured at the nadir point)
Spacecraft Altitude: 111 nautical miles (206 km)
Sun Elevation Angle: 26 (Angle in degrees between the horizon and the sun, measured at the nadir point)
Orbit Number: 169

Captions

The San Quintín Glacier is the largest outflow glacier of the Northern Patagonian Ice Field in southern Chile. Its terminus is a piedmont lobe just short of the Golfo de Penas on the Pacific Ocean and just north of 47°S. Like many glaciers worldwide during the twentieth century, San Quintín appears to be losing mass and possibly retreating. Such a change is evident in these two photographs taken by astronauts only seven years apart. The first was taken by the crew of STS-068 in October 1994 and the second by the Increment 4 crew of the International Space Station in February 2002 (ISS004-E-7267).

Even with the reversal of season and different lighting conditions of these two acquisitions, a loss of mass and change of structure, particularly in the lobe, are strikingly evident in these comparative photos. Glaciers are one of the special topics identified as scientific objectives for monitoring with photography from the International Space Station. Astronaut photography is a complimentary source of remote sensing data available for use with other sensor systems being used to monitor and study glaciers (see an ASTER image of the San Quintín Glacier). They also provide strong, visual context information on glacier environments and processes using a familiar medium, the camera.

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