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1 April 2011 Kansas from Space: A Century of Viewing the Earth from Above
Steven A. Hawley, Daniel F. Merriam
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The Earth has been viewed and photographed from above for more than a century utilizing a variety of platforms such as kites, balloons, airplanes, and now robotic and manned spacecraft. Imagery has been captured both by film and digital cameras from heights of a few hundred feet to hundreds of miles. This imagery has been used to construct topographic maps, identify man-made objects, and map surface features on Earth including the geology. Photographs taken at different altitudes have different resolution, aerial coverage, and levels of detail, and thus serve a number of different purposes. The quality and utility of Earth imagery has continuously improved during the last 100 years, including the photo-documentation of features in Kansas. Of special interest is the development of space-based photo-documentation including an extensive database of some 800,000 photographs maintained by NASA that have been taken by the astronauts since the beginning of human spaceflight. There are many high-quality photographs of Kansas most of which have been obtained from either Space Shuttle missions in high-inclination orbits or from the International Space Station. Images taken remotely over Kansas from different platforms at different heights for different purposes are shown as examples of how images from altitude can be used.

Steven A. Hawley and Daniel F. Merriam "Kansas from Space: A Century of Viewing the Earth from Above," Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Science 114(2), 95-107, (1 April 2011).
Published: 1 April 2011

geological features
man-made features
remote sensing
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