This image from NASA's Terra spacecraft shows Palouse, a rich farming area of some 7,000 square kilometers, reminiscent of Tuscany. But instead of vineyards, the main crops are wheat and rapeseed.
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Palouse, WA

Located south of Spokane, Washington, the Palouse is a rich farming area of some 7,000 square kilometers, reminiscent of Tuscany. But instead of vineyards, the main crops are wheat and rapeseed. The rolling hills of windblown silt (loess) cover up part of the Columbia Plateau basalt province. The image near Waitsburg was acquired July 24, 2008, covers an area of 27 by 30 km, and is located at 46.3 degrees north, 118.2 degrees west.

With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER images Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet. ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched Dec. 18, 1999, on Terra. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and data products.

The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER provides scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping and monitoring of dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats; monitoring potentially active volcanoes; identifying crop stress; determining cloud morphology and physical properties; wetlands evaluation; thermal pollution monitoring; coral reef degradation; surface temperature mapping of soils and geology; and measuring surface heat balance.

The U.S. science team is located at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C.

More information about ASTER is available at http://asterweb.jpl.nasa.gov/.

Image details

ID#:
PIA18494

Date added:
2014-06-25

Target:
Earth

Mission:
Terra

Spacecraft:
Terra

Instruments:
Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER)

Rating:



Views:
276

Full-Res TIFF:
PIA18494.tif (11.22 MB)

Full-Res JPG:
PIA18494.jpg (0.79 MB)

Image credit:
NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team