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Astronauts onboard the ISS also take striking images in addition to their designated science targets; hometowns, places of special interest, and spacecraft are typical subjects. Among Leroy Chiao’s special interests were the Great Wall of China (see also China’s Wall Less Great in View from Space) and spacecraft launch facilities. Crew Earth Observations scientists assisted him in capturing these targets by uploading detailed landscape descriptions, maps, and other remotely sensed imagery to the ISS. As Commander Chiao stated, “Photography in space helped bring out the artistic side in me. The beauty of the Earth was very inspiring, and I tried to find new ways to capture and express that beauty.”
The Great Wall of China and Inner Mongolia are featured in this image. Snow cover and shadows helped to positively identify the position of the Great Wall. Astronaut photograph ISS010-E-18338
was acquired February 20, 2005, with a Kodak 760C digital camera with a 400 mm lens.
Backdropped by the blackness of space and Earth’s horizon, an unpiloted Russian Progress supply vehicle approaches the International Space Station. The Progress 17 supply craft docked to the aft port of the Zvezda Service Module as the Station flew 225 statute miles over the Equator west of Africa. Astronaut photograph ISS010-E-19144
was acquired March 2, 2005.
A full moon is visible in this view above Earth’s atmospheric limb. Astronaut photograph ISS010-E-18583
was acquired February 24, 2005, with a Kodak 760C digital camera with an 800 mm lens.
Images are provided by the ISS Crew Earth Observations experiment and the Image Science & Analysis Group, Johnson Space Center. The International Space Station Program supports the laboratory to help astronauts take pictures of Earth that will be of the greatest value to scientists and the public, and to make those images freely available on the Internet. Additional images taken by astronauts and cosmonauts can be viewed at the NASA/JSC Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth.