Massachusetts Coastline (NASA, International Space Station, 06/27/11)

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The Massachusetts coastline is featured in this image photographed by an Expedition 28 crew member on the International Space Station. The Crew Earth Observations team at NASA Johnson Space Center sends specific ground targets for photography up to the station crew on a daily basis, but sometimes the crew takes imagery on their own of striking displays visible from orbit. One such display, often visible to the ISS crew due to their ability to look outwards at angles between 0 and 90 degrees, is sunglint on the waters of Earth. Sunglint is caused by sunlight reflecting off of a water surface, much as light reflects from a mirror, directly towards the observer. Roughness variations of the water surface scatter the light, blurring the reflection and producing the typical silvery sheen of the sunglint area. The point of maximum sunglint is centered within Cape Cod Bay, the body of water partially enclosed by the "hook" of Cape Cod in Massachusetts (bottom). Cape Cod was formally designated a National Seashore in 1966. Sunglint off the water provides sharp contrast with the coastline and the nearby islands of Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket (lower left), both popular destinations for tourists and summer residents. To the north, rocky Cape Ann extends out into the Atlantic Ocean; the border with New Hampshire is located approximately 30 kilometers up the coast. Further to the west, the eastern half of Long Island, New York is visible emerging from extensive cloud cover over the mid-Atlantic and Midwestern States. Persistent storm tracks had been contributing to record flooding along rivers in the Midwest at the time this image was taken in late June 2011. Thin blue layers of the atmosphere, contrasted against the darkness of space, are visible extending along the Earth's curvature at top.

Image credit: NASA

Original image:

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aphotoshooter, Chris Devers, CW Estes, and 49 other people added this photo to their favorites.

  1. aphotoshooter 45 months ago | reply

    wonderful.. amazing view..
    best wishes to the crew..

    happy shooting,

  2. © Montse★FELIZ 2012;-)) [deleted] 45 months ago | reply

    This is a wonderful shot!!!!! Congratulations

    Have a nice day;-))

  3. Chris Devers 45 months ago | reply

    I see my house! (Well, not really, but I see where it would be... :-)

    The APOD link is here, pinning the lat/lon at 41.5 / -72.5

  4. Beardy Vulcan 44 months ago | reply

    I like the sun shining on the sea.

  5. SissiPrincess 44 months ago | reply

    Wow! Amazing image!

  6. pauline.kehoe 44 months ago | reply

    Amazing capture, beautiful.

  7. jbcee 44 months ago | reply

    Great photo

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