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STS032-96-18
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Spacecraft nadir point: 0.5° N, 162.6° W

Photo center point: 2.0° N, 158.0° W

Nadir to Photo Center: East

Spacecraft Altitude: 177 nautical miles (328km)
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Image Caption: Christmas Island (2.0N,158.0W), mid central Pacific Ocean, is considered to be the largest atoll in the world, about 25 km in diameter, and is part of the Line Island Group, a northwest-southeast trending chain of volcanic islands on some of the oldest ocean crust in the Pacific. The lagoon is nearly filled with reef growth leaving only a narrow entrance from the sea and large cocoanut groves are found along the fringes of the lagoon.