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NASA, Google Earth Display Astronauts' Best Earth Photos
09.25.07
Palm Island, seen from space Ever dreamed of being an astronaut so you could look back at the planet and enjoy the view? NASA and Google Earth have teamed to make it easier for everyone to see striking Earth photographs taken by astronauts from the International Space Station and space shuttle.

By clicking on the NASA insignia displayed on the Google Earth NASA content layer, visitors can browse through a collection of astronauts' best photographs. The images include some of the most unique and beautiful perspectives of Earth recorded by astronauts in orbit.

Image at right: Palm Island Resort, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, as seen from the Space Station. Image credit: NASA

The layer includes three types of Earth imagery: significant photographs taken by astronauts; imagery from NASA’s satellite sensors like the Sea-viewing Wide Field of view Sensor (SeaWiFS), Landsat, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS); and "city lights" imagery derived from the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP).

The NASA photographs are displayed as pop-up images with descriptive captions and are "pinned" on the Google display at the latitude and longitude of the center point of each image.

The content layer that features the astronaut photographs has been developed by the Crew Earth Observations team, part of the Image Science and Analysis Laboratory at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston.

Google Earth maximizes the impact of NASA's Earth photographs by allowing the user to search by place. Users can click through the Google content associated with a geographic location to get a full description and technical parameters associated with an image. They also may choose to access higher resolution images.

The addition of NASA imagery to Google Earth has been accomplished under a Space Act Agreement signed in December 2006 by Google and NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif. NASA’s International Space Station Program supports Crew Earth Observations to provide photographs that will be of the greatest value to scientists and the public.

For more information on Crew Earth Observations and astronaut photography of Earth, visit:

http://eol.jsc.nasa.gov/


For information about the International Space Station, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/station/


For more information on Google Earth, visit:

http://www.googleearth.com/



Lynnette Madison
NASA's Johnson Space Center