Astronauts aboard the International Space Station took a picture on July 31, 2011 showing the layers of the Earth’s atmosphere. The orange-red troposphere lies closest to Earth’s surface. A brown transitional layer marks the upper edge of the troposphere, the tropopause.
A milky white and gray layer rests above that, likely part of the stratosphere possibly containing some noctilucent clouds. The upper atmosphere composed of the mesosphere, thermosphere, and exosphere fades from blue to the blackness of space.— Tom Chao
Credit: ISS Crew Earth Observations Experiment and Image Science & Analysis Laboratory/Johnson Space Center
Backdropped by a Colorful Earth
STS-116 Mission Specialists Robert L. Curbeam, Jr. (left) and Christer Fuglesang participate in the first of the mission’s three planned sessions of extravehicular activity as construction resumes on the International Space Station.
Image credit: NASA