Under an agreement with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the Department of Defense's National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is now distributing elevation data from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM). The SRTM is a joint project between NASA and NIMA to map the Earth's land surface in three dimensions at a level of detail unprecedented for such a large area. Flown aboard the NASA Space Shuttle Endeavour February 11-22, 2000, the SRTM successfully collected data over 80 percent of the Earth's land surface, for most of the area between 60? N. and 56? S. latitude. The SRTM hardware included the Spaceborne Imaging Radar-C (SIR-C) and X-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (X-SAR) systems that had flown twice previously on other space shuttle missions. The SRTM data were collected specifically with a technique known as interferometry that allows image data from dual radar antennas to be processed for the extraction of ground heights.
Additional publication details
USGS Numbered Series
Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM)
U.S. Geological Survey
Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center