STS041-83-98
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Spacecraft nadir point: 9.1° N, 42.8° E

Photo center point: 11.5° N, 40.5° E

Nadir to Photo Center: Northwest

Spacecraft Altitude: 162 nautical miles (300km)
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Image Caption: STS41-83-098 and STS029-87-070 Bab el Mandeb Strait These two views
show the Bab el Mandeb ("The Gate of Tears"), the strategic strait
that separates the Red Sea from the Gulf of Aden. Perm Island (1),
visible on the bottom left view, divides the strait in two: Large
Strait and Small Strait. For most ship traffic, Large Strait is used
because it is much safer to navigate. The Bab el Mandeb is 27.4 km
wide and in Large Strait, 322 meters deep. The straits' strategic
importance began with the opening of the Suez Canal. The strait takes
in territorial waters of four coastal states: North and South Yemen,
Djibouti, and Ethiopia. About 60 ships a day pass through, but only 15
percent of Western Europe's oil supplies are transported via the
strait. The strait is of great importance to the Suez Canal, to Israel
for the port of Eilat, and to the Red Sea littoral States.