Observation of Environmental Phenomena (Imedias) - 07.15.14
ISS Science for Everyone
Science Objectives for Everyone
Science Results for Everyone
Sponsoring Space Agency
European Space Agency (ESA)
ISS Expedition Duration
August 2001 - December 2001
Previous ISS Missions
Drawing on photos of remarkable phenomena, the IMEDIAS experiment aims to put together a collection of original images. Combined with satellite images, these will provide scientists with crucial information in the field of Earth observation on clouds, desertification, deforestation and much more. This experiment will be carried out concurrently, on the ground, by French junior and senior high school students.
The astronauts who will be carrying out this experiment have received special training to raise their awareness of the fields of study concerned. They will take thematic images during sessions scheduled in the flight plan. The astronauts may consult an atlas and orbital information on the common PC. At the same time, scientists at the CADMOS centre for the development of microgravity applications and space operations will monitor the phenomena. Information will be transmitted to the astronauts for execution from the CADMOS and TsUP-M operational centres. The events observed fall into two categories: isolated and permanent. High-quality photographic images, both digital and film-based (traditional), will be taken from the Russian segment of the ISS to record these two types of events. Themes studied include: biomass fires information ranging from the detection of individual smoke plumes to fire zones on a regional scale atmospheric aerosols pollution in mega-cities, large dust clouds, erupting volcanic plumes, cloud formations. Desertification. This should include the observation of areas where the transition from desert to vegetation is progressive (Southern Sahara) and more sudden (Nile delta, deserts of China, Mauritania, Libya, the Aral Sea, Amu Darya, Syr Darya) Massive and fragmented deforestation. The Amazon and the Congo basin will be studied and photographed Coastal zones. Observations will be made of pollution in major rivers (Amazon, Nile, Ganges, etc.), as well as urban pollution, areas sensitive to rises in water levels (such as the Ganges delta), sensitive areas harboring threatened ecosystems such as the Rhone delta, the Egyptian coastline, atolls, and all marine phenomena characterized by a specific perceptible colouring. The images will be taken during five one-hour sessions scheduled on the third, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth days of the mission. For this experiment, Nikon F5-type cameras, a Nikon Coolpix 990-type digital camera and two zoom lenses (24/85 mm and 80/400 mm), as well as a Compact Flash PCMCIA card and the Atlas software installed on the common PC, will be used. During the flight, the photos will be dated and the camera settings monitored. The images taken with the digital camera will be 2,048 x 1,536 pixels, in three possible formats: 1,024 x 768 pixels, 640 x 480 pixels or 320 x 240 pixels. The camera selected is equipped with an aspherical lens. Shots will be taken in auto-focus mode on the camera equipped with a TTL contrast detection system. The shots may be automatic or customized. Three working environments may be memorized. The film-based camera is an auto focus 24 x 36 reflex camera with interchangeable viewfinders, used in AF mode and efficient even in lowlight, low-contrast conditions. Its response time is ultra short (40 meters/second) and its aluminium/titanium casing is very sturdy. Its zoom is equipped with two aspherical lenses for high-definition results.
ESA Erasmus Experiment Archive