Yukon Delta, Alaska Seen From Space

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
March 20, 2022
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Yukon Delta, Alaska Seen From Space
Yukon Delta, Alaska

The Yukon River Delta (along with the Kuskokwim River) is one of the largest in the world.
Emptying into the Bering Sea on the west coast of Alaska, it is over 130,000 square kilometers in size. The combined delta has about 25,000 Alaska Native residents. The image was acquired May 10, 2017, covers an area of 60 by 60 km, and is located at 62.9 degrees north, 164.3 degrees east.

With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region and its high spatial resolution of about 50 to 300 feet (15 to 90 meters), 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 in Pasadena, Calif. The Terra mission is part of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, Washington.

More information about ASTER is available at

SpaceRef co-founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.