Shuttle Mission That Mapped Earth Marks 10th Anniversary

Feb 12, 2010
3-D perspective view of Russia's volcanically active Kamchatka Peninsula, created using SRTM topographic data and an enhanced true-color image from the Landsat 7 satellite. Image credit: NASA/JPL

On Feb. 11, 2000, two radar antennas built by JPL launched aboard Space Shuttle Endeavour on an 11-day mission to create the first-ever near-global high-resolution database of Earth's topography.

The international collected topographic data over nearly 80 percent of Earth's land surfaces, revealing for the first time large, detailed swaths of Earth's topography previously obscured by persistent cloudiness. The data benefit scientists, engineers, government agencies and the public alike, with applications that range from land-use planning to virtual Earth exploration.

NASA is currently using Shuttle Radar Topography Mission data to create an even better global topographic map by combining it with the more complete Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and global digital elevation model of Earth released last year by NASA and Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

Hop aboard as we take you on a virtual tour of some of the more "uplifting" topographic features of our home planet: www.jpl.nasa.gov/multimedia/sl… hows/index.cfm?id=23 .

Explore further: Dawn spacecraft captures best-ever view of dwarf planet

More information: For more information on the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission, visit: www.jpl.nasa.gov/srtm

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Space Radar Reveals Topography of Tsunami Site

Oct 02, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- Two color-coded perspective views of the Independent State of Samoa (left) and American Samoa (right), generated with digital elevation data from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission, illustrate ...

Recommended for you

Dawn spacecraft captures best-ever view of dwarf planet

7 hours ago

NASA's Dawn spacecraft has returned the sharpest images ever seen of the dwarf planet Ceres. The images were taken 147,000 miles (237,000 kilometers) from Ceres on Jan. 25, and represent a new milestone for ...

Image: Striking lightning from space

11 hours ago

Lightning illuminates the area it strikes on Earth but the flash can be seen from space, too. This image was taken from 400 km above Earth in 2012 by an astronaut on the International Space Station travelling ...

Are asteroids the future of planetary science?

11 hours ago

I don't think I ever learned one of those little rhymes – My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas – to memorize the order of the planets, but if I had, it would've painted for me a minimalist ...

Earth's moon may not be critical to life

13 hours ago

The Moon has long been viewed as a crucial component in creating an environment suitable for the evolution of complex life on Earth, but a number of scientific results in recent years have shown that perhaps our ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.