Browse image
Resolutions offered for this image:
5114 x 4762 pixels 640 x 595 pixels 5700 x 6000 pixels 500 x 526 pixels 640 x 480 pixels
Cloud masks available for this image:

Spacecraft nadir point: 38.1° N, 101.0° E

Photo center point: 40.0° N, 97.0° E

Photo center point by machine learning:

Nadir to Photo Center: West

Spacecraft Altitude: 307 nautical miles (569km)
Click for a map
Width Height Annotated Cropped Purpose Links
5114 pixels 4762 pixels No No Earth From Space collection Download Image
640 pixels 595 pixels No No Earth From Space collection Download Image
5700 pixels 6000 pixels No No Download Image
500 pixels 526 pixels No No Download Image
640 pixels 480 pixels No No Download Image
Other options available:
Download Packaged File
Download a Google Earth KML for this Image
View photo footprint information
Download a GeoTIFF for this photo
Image Caption: STS048-610-34 Alluvial Fan, Gansu Province, China September 1991
Alluvial fans, cones of sand and gravel, are commonplace in arid-to-semiarid mountain environments. This photograph shows an almost classic alluvial fan, approximately 50 miles (80 kilometers) at its base, west of Yumenzhen in Gansu Province, which borders the southern edge of the Gobi Desert. The northwestern end of the Qilian Mountains is southeast of this large fan. These fans are built by intermittently flowing streams carrying coarse rocks that have been eroded from a mountainous or upland area. Although the braided channels downstream shift constantly, the apex of this fan is fixed at the mouth of a canyon. As the downstream channels switch back and forth, the sweeping action produces the semicircular shape. Near the base of the large fan lies the Hexi Corridor, a narrow ground transportation corridor that contains a road and a railroad whose exact locations are difficult to see because of the scale of the photograph and the lack of contrast in the desert.