Where In The Universe Challenge #10

Article written: 2 Jul , 2008
Updated: 24 Dec , 2015
by

I’ve been enjoying a few lazy days of summer relaxing by a lake. The weather has been perfect, the lake is clear and warm, the food and drinks plentiful; a perfect vacation. But I finally realized (late in the day) today is Wednesday, and its time for another “Where In The Universe” challenge. So, here’s an image, and your mission is to guess where in the universe this picture was taken. You get extra points for guessing the spacecraft that is responsible for the image, too. So take your time, maybe put your feet up and grab a cold beverage on this warm day and ponder this image for awhile. No peeking below for the answer until you’ve made your guess.

When I first saw this image, I thought for sure it was a picture of some icy planetary surface or body of water. But actually, its not ice at all. This is Lake Erie, in the United States, and the image was taken on May 28th, 2006 at about noon local time, on a nice summer day. The sun is just at the right angle that causes a glint off the water, giving it an icy appearance. The image shows features on the surface of Lake Erie, about 50 kilometers (30 miles) west of Cleveland, Ohio.

The image shows V-shaped wakes of small water craft, as well as broad patterns of larger craft, probably large freighters carrying cargo, that displace and disturb more water during passage. These larger wakes are aligned with the direct course between Detroit and Cleveland (not shown in the image). Some of the broad, ill-defined swaths of light and dark (aligned from lower left to upper right) are streaks of wind-roughened water, which reflect the Sun differently.

This image was taken by an astronaut on board the International Space Station with a Kodak 760C digital camera using an 800 mm lens. They are provided by the ISS Crew Earth Observations experiment and the Image Science & Analysis Group, Johnson Space Center.

So, where ever you are, you can now enjoy gazing at a lake, just like I’ve been doing all week. My lake is a lot smaller than Lake Erie, though. But, enjoy!

Learn more about this image at NASA’s Earth Observatory site.


29 Responses

  1. Kevin F. says

    Ugh… I had it pegged for Europa.

  2. Nexus says

    I guessed Ganymede.

  3. Kevin White says

    Enceladus, what do I win??

    Oh, rats…

  4. The 327th Male says

    Why don’t you throw a trick-trick question at us for once?

    My first thought was Europa. My second thought was “oh wait, they always pick a deceptive picture. Must be something else.”

  5. RL says

    Lake Erie?????? Argh! I guessed Mars. Maybe next time.

  6. Dave says

    I went with the moon. I really just throw out guesses with these things.

  7. Al Hall says

    Hmmm….. You got me.. Okay, fine…. ๐Ÿ™

    P.s. May 28th isn’t a “summer” day…..

  8. Nexus says

    I should have known it was Earth. It’s always Earth.

  9. Loki says

    Surprise, surprise, I guessed Europa.

    …never in a million years.

  10. Big Ian says

    Europa or Iapetus was my guess

    Doh!!!

  11. Kootstar says

    Well, so far I can put in my guess for Europa, too. That light angle sure does make it look like the ice out there!

  12. astrocrazy says

    I was so sure it was Europa!!! Better luck next time for me!!!

  13. LLDIAZ says

    I’m sorry but that does not look like water.

  14. alphonso richardson says

    I guessed Europa – i’m NEVER any good at these. DAMN!

  15. Paul Eaton-Jones says

    Perhaps my mind doesn’t soar. I guessed Earth though I actually thought it was a high altitude desert.
    Paul.

  16. Pedro says

    Ups!

    I also thought it was Europa… but now i see i’m just another fly caught in universe todays’s web!!

    Pedro

  17. owen says

    At first glance I was sure it was Europa but then I thought it might be somewhere on Earth. It really looks like ice.

  18. Navneeth says

    Good one!

    Europa was my guess.

  19. law mc says

    im guessing europa.

  20. law mc says

    ๐Ÿ™

  21. neoguru says

    Rats! My 2nd missed guess, both of Earthly images. I’m now 8 for 10. I figured it to be a radar image of solidified lava flows on Venus. Hey! Venus is the closest planet to Earth, no? Do I get part credit? I shoulda seen the wakes – a dead giveaway. The short blurb on the lake vacation was a nice touch. I love these things. Keep it up!

  22. Tim says

    I said Europa darn.

  23. Jorge says

    Yeah, as many others I also thought I was looking at Europa, believing to be some old photo from some pre-Galileo flyby.

    Hm… I have been failing more Earth challenges than other planets’… Should I be worried?

  24. Wim Ghoris says

    This must be Europa

  25. Yael Dragwyla says

    Al Hall says: “May 28th isn’t a ‘summer’ dayรขโ‚ฌยฆ..” Depends on where in the yearly cycle you measure the beginnings of seasons, from the solstices and equinoxes, or cross-quarter days. Measured by means of cross-quarter days, summer begins on or about the 5th of May, from which we get Mayday celebrations, Lady Day, etc.; autumn begins on or about August 5th (Lammas); winter begins on November 1st (Samhein), and spring begins on February 2nd (Candlemas). If I remember right, the UK observes cross-quarter days as the beginning of seasons. Here in America we go with the solstices and equnoxes: spring begins on or about March 20; summer begins on or about June 20; autumn begins on or about September 23; and winter begins on or about December 21. (And here in Seattle last May 28th, it was cold and drizzly, though a few days ago, it was extremely hot and muggy. Calendars are no guides to likely Seattle weather. ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. Naos says

    Europa with Galileo.

  27. nypd89 says

    i thought it was an old pic of Pluto or some icy planet, lol

  28. Rick Eastwood says

    I thought the earth but i thought it was a desert.

    Couldnt have been more wrong on the same planet could i ?

  29. michelle says

    I thought for sure it was Europa but of course that’s way too easy!

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