[Skip to content]
ISS010-E-13079
Browse image
Resolutions offered for this image:
1000 x 660 pixels 356 x 540 pixels 3032 x 2064 pixels 639 x 435 pixels

MAP LOCATION
latitude/longitude of image
Spacecraft nadir point: 6.1° N, 96.2° E

Photo center point: 4.8° N, 95.4° E

Nadir to Photo Center: Southwest

Spacecraft Altitude: 190 nautical miles (352km)
Click for Google map
IMAGE DETAILS
features and other details
CAMERA INFORMATION
information about camera used
ALL DOWNLOAD OPTIONS
additional formats
Width Height Annotated Cropped Purpose Download Image 
1000 pixels 660 pixels No Yes Earth From Space collection Download
356 pixels 540 pixels Yes Yes NASA's Earth Observatory web site Download
3032 pixels 2064 pixels No No Download
639 pixels 435 pixels No No Download
Other options available:
Download Packaged File
Download a Google Earth KML for this Image
View photo footprint information
Image Caption: Tsunami Damage, Northwestern Sumatra (Indonesia)

On December 26, 2004, a large (magnitude 9.0) earthquake occurred off the western coast of Sumatra in the Indian Ocean. The earthquake was caused by the release of stresses accumulated as the Burma tectonic plate overrides the India tectonic plate. Movement of the seafloor due to the earthquake generated a tsunami, or seismic sea wave, that affected coastal regions around the Indian Ocean. The northwestern Sumatra coastline in particular suffered extensive damage and loss of life. These astronaut photographs illustrate damage along the southwestern coast of Aceh Province in the vicinity of the city of Lho' Kruet, Indonesia.

Large areas of bare and disturbed soil (brownish gray) that were previously covered with vegetation are visible along the coastline in the near-nadir (top) image. Embayments in the coastline were particularly hard hit, while adjacent headlands were less affected. The oblique (lower) astronaut photograph was acquired 45 seconds after the near-nadir photograph, and captures sunglint illuminating the Indian Ocean and standing water inland (light gray, yellow). Distortion and scale differences in the images are caused by increased obliquity of the view from the International Space Station. Arrows on the photographs indicate several points of comparison between the two images. Standing bodies of seawater may inhibit revegetation of damaged areas and act as sources of salt contamination in soil and groundwater.