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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: STS41D Roll: 32 Frame: 14 Mission ID on the Film or image: S84 14
Country or Geographic Name:
Features: THUNDERSTORM SILHOUETTE
Center Point: Latitude: Longitude: (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:
Camera Focal Length: 250mm
Camera: HB: Hasselblad
Film: 6017 : Kodak Ektachrome 64, 220 Roll Format.
QualityFilm Exposure: Normal
Percentage of Cloud Cover: (0-10)
GMT Date: 19840830 (YYYYMMDD) GMT Time: 200814 (HHMMSS)
Nadir Point Latitude: 21.1, Longitude: 122.9 (Negative numbers indicate south for latitude and west for longitude)
Nadir to Photo Center Direction:
Sun Azimuth: 70 (Clockwise angle in degrees from north to the sun measured at the nadir point)
Spacecraft Altitude: 162 nautical miles (300 km)
Sun Elevation Angle: -19 (Angle in degrees between the horizon and the sun, measured at the nadir point)
Orbit Number: 6
CaptionsAug 1984, "Clean" Earth Limb with Silhouette of Clouds.
This is a photo of the Earth's atmosphere at the terminator
(when the sun is setting or rising). It something the
astronauts see about every 45 minutes as they circle the
Earth. You can see how thin the atmosphere is and what
portion of that holds the oxygen that we all require. I am
going to concentrate mostly on the troposphere layer for the
rest of this brief, after we look at a couple more Earth
Close analyses of these terminator photographs provide
counts of the number and spacing of atmospheric laminae. In
the photographs, as many as 4 laminae have been noted in the
normally red-to-orange troposphere, and up to 12 laminae
have been counted in the blue upper atmosphere. However,
true replication of human vision is not possible using
present films. For instance, while on orbit, one astronaut
counted 22 layers in the blue layer alone. The photograph
of that event recorded only 8 such layers. Sunrises and
sunsets differ in structure, since the tropopause altitude
and atmospheric lamina temperatures vary with time of day,
season, and latitude. This particular photograph was
probably taken out over the southeast Pacific approaching
the coast of Chile looking eastward at a sunrise over the
Andes Mountains. The building of cumulus clouds over the
rain forests of the Amazon basin can be seen pushing well
above the tropopause.
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Recommended Citation: Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA-Johnson Space Center. "The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth." .