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STS088-704-71
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Spacecraft nadir point: 33.9° S, 60.3° W

Photo center point: 34.0° S, 58.5° W

Nadir to Photo Center: East

Spacecraft Altitude: 211 nautical miles (391km)
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Image Caption: The Argentine capital of Buenos Aires, known as the Paris of the
southern hemisphere, is the gray area upper center, with the satellite
university city of La Plata to its upper left. One third of Argentina's
population lives in the metro region of Buenos Aires, prompting
politicians to seriously consider moving the capital to another part of
the country in order to relieve congestion and problems of
overcentralization.

The great estuary of the River Plate (Rio de la Plata) is the brownish
water mass top left, measuring 70 km across in the extreme top left of
the view, and more than 300 km in length (about one third of which is
visible in this view). The estuary is so large that it mislead the
explorer Magellan in the early 1500s into thinking that he had found a
sea passage around the southern tip of South America. He spent
weeks exploring the Plate before admitting failure. He then spent
many months probing the Patagonian coast before finding the strait
named after him, and beginning his remarkable voyage to the
Philippines, across what he thought would be a small Pacific Ocean.

The delta of the Parana River appears green (lower right). The river
itself is the brown line snaking through the 50 km-wide swampy green
delta bottomlands. It is easy to sense how the outward growth of the
Parana delta (towards the east-i.e. towards the top left) is choking off
access by the smaller Uruguay R. (bottom center) to the estuary
Scattered cumulus cloud obscures parts of Uruguay on the north side
of the estuary.