ISS059-E-67912
Browse image
Resolutions offered for this image:
720 x 480 pixels 5568 x 3712 pixels 640 x 427 pixels
Cloud masks available for this image:

Spacecraft nadir point: 28.4° S, 135.0° E

Photo center point: 27.5° S, 137.3° E

Nadir to Photo Center: East

Spacecraft Altitude: 223 nautical miles (413km)
Click for Google map
Width Height Annotated Cropped Purpose Links
720 pixels 480 pixels Yes No NASA's Earth Observatory web site Download Image
5568 pixels 3712 pixels No No Download Image
640 pixels 427 pixels No No Download Image
Other options available:
Download Packaged File
Download a Google Earth KML for this Image
View photo footprint information
Image Caption: Simpson Desert, Australia

This photograph, taken by an astronaut on the International Space Station, offers a detailed view of parallel, linear dunes in Australia's Simpson Desert. The dunes have formed as a result of wind erosion and sand deposition taking place over thousands of years. Some of the dunes stretch more than 100 kilometers (60 miles) in length.

Lake Eyre - also known as Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre - is Australia's largest salt lake. Some of it is visible in the right corner of the image, along with other playa lakes that stand out from the rippled landscape. Playas are flat, shallow lake beds that occur in arid and semi-arid climate zones. The dry lake beds are lighter in color due to a thin layer of salt deposits that reflect more light.

The Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre basin spans parts of South Australia, Northern Territory, Queensland, and New South Wales. It is part of one of the world's largest internally draining river systems, which means that the rivers in the photo do not drain into the ocean. In this photo, Lake Eyre has a higher volume of water than usual due to flooding that occurred earlier in the year.