The Republic of Singapore is a city-state off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula. An island country made up of 63 islands, the country is largely urbanized with very little rain forest left. Part of various local empires since the 2nd century AD, Singapore declared independence in 1965. Since then it has had a massive increase in wealth: Singapore is the world's fourth leading financial center, and its port is one of the five busiest in the world. About 5 million people live in Singapore, of whom almost 3 million were born locally. The image was acquired 22 june 2001, covers an area of 42.3 x 34.8 km, and is located at 1.2 degrees north latitude, 103.9 degrees east longitude.
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/.