12-1: The Russian Yuri Gagarin was first in space, on April 12, 1961; the first American was Alan Shepard, Jr. on May 5, 1961; the first American to orbit was John Glenn, Jr. on February 20, 1962, and the first pair of astronauts were "Gus" Grissom and John Young, on March 23, 1965. BACK

12-2: Yes, barely. Look for a medium gray area near the Earth's horizon at the far upper right. The Pacific Ocean appears as a uniform gray strip just below the horizon. This view extends outward at least 1400 km (875 miles). BACK

12-3: The Nile Delta is roughly shaped like a triangle. The Greek capital letter for "D" is Delta, which is shaped like a triangle. Early geographers noted this coincidence and applied the name to this delta and to others around the world that result from deposition into the oceans at river mouths. BACK

12-4: If you know your geography, Iran is east of Oman and the Arabian Peninsula. The Zagros mountains of Iran are in the left (east), making the top of the photo to the south. BACK

12-5: The Imperial Valley lies to the left of the prominent Salton Sea. Move through that valley towards the upper left. Note that there is a mix of green (full field crops) and brown in the Valley. There then is an abrupt, straight tonal discontinuity or difference within this agricultural region. This is the border. On the Mexican side, at the time the picture was taken, the amount of water available to Mexican farmers was limited, so the number of farms actually growing crops is much less. BACK

12-6: Much of central Africa is covered by tropical rainforests, which in this natural color photo shows up as a dark greenish-black (better seen as such on the original). BACK

12-7: This drainage pattern is similar to what is called "trellis" drainage, such as is observed in parts of the Valley and Ridge province of the Appalachians. There is a master stream running from lower right across the photo towards the upper left. This small river seems to be cutting across the dune field below it, in which there is a series of parallel, longitudinal dunes, partially vegetated, that extend from the bottom of the photo approximately parallel to its sides. Drainage paths (intermittent ?) within the interdune lowlands run parallel to these dunes. North of the river, the dunes run across the photo (left-right) and enclose small streams parallel to their trend and roughly perpendicular to the directions followed by the lower set of streams. BACK

12-8: There is a distinctively shaped lake (called by NASA photointerpreters "Boot" Lake) in the lower center of the Shuttle photo. That same lake is near the center of the LFC photo. The LFC photo is oriented such that its upper edge is running roughly north-east. Mt. Everest is not in the Shuttle photo. The drainage in the lower right corner of the LFC photo is off the bottom of the Shuttle photo. BACK

12-9: In the top photo, one is looking east; in the bottom photo its top is towards the north. In my atlas, the elongate body of water is named Mayfield Lake; two dams are largely responsible for its existence. BACK


12-10: San Francisco is the brightest spot in this photo. It lies at the very end of the lower arm of the elongate loop. Oakland is a bright area directly across from it. The black lightless area inside this light loop is the Bay itself. At the other end, where the loop does maximum turning, is San Jose. BACK

12-11: Congratulations! You probably located your city or at least one near you. The "rosary bead" effect is just the result of major towns tending to be built along major roads. BACK

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Primary Author: Nicholas M. Short, Sr. email:

Collaborators: Code 935 NASA GSFC, GST, USAF Academy,
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