June 19, 2014 - Western Australia

Western Australia

On June 6, 2014 the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite captured a beautiful true-color image of clear a winter day across Western Australia.

Western Australia is the largest state in Australia and makes up the entire 1/3 of the western part of the country. The coastline of the state is impressively long, with 12,289 km (7,636 mi) along the mainland, and an additional 7,892 km (4,903 mi) of island coastline, according to Geoscience Australia, an agency of the Australian Government. The ocean seen in this image is the Indian Ocean, with a bit of the Great Australian Bight seen in the lower right corner.

The western-most point in Australia is the peninsula known as Steep Point which sits on the coast just north of center in this image. The peninsula to the north is called North West Cape. The Tropic of Capricorn passes through Australia between these two peninsulas.

Most of Western Australia’s population, estimated at over 2.5 million in December, 2013, lives in the southwestern section of the state. The capital of Western Australia, the city of Perth, is home to 1.9 million of those people. Perth can be seen in this image as a large gray half-circle sitting on the coast in a green area. A small cluster of red hotspots, possibly indicating fires, sits near the city. Perth has been growing rapidly, giving rise to predictions, according to the Committee for Perth that at least 3.9 million and possibly 5.4 million people will call Perth home by 2050.

Image Facts
Satellite: Aqua
Date Acquired: 6/6/2014
Resolutions: 1km (497.2 KB), 500m (1.7 MB), 250m (4.3 MB)
Bands Used: 1,4,3
Image Credit: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC