Image credit: NASA
Uploader comment: ISS034-E-041528 (6 Feb. 2013) --- Tristan da Cunha is featured in this image photographed by an Expedition 34 crew member on the International Space Station. The island is located in the southern Atlantic Ocean; more than 3,700 kilometers from the northern coastline of Antarctica, approximately 2,800 kilometers to the southern tip of Africa, and more than 3,000 kilometers from the eastern coastline of South America. The island forms part of the British Overseas Territory of Saint Helena, Ascension, and Tristan da Cunha. The shoreline of the 13-kilometer-wide island is marked on most sides by steep cliffs, with lower beach areas on the southern and north-northwestern sides. The island is notable for its bird population, including important breeding grounds for a variety of petrels, albatrosses, penguins and shearwaters. Tristan da Cunha is a shield volcano; a type of volcanic structure usually recognized by a low, broad profile and composed of silica-poor lavas (such as basalt). The upper surface of this low base appears dark green in this photograph. Steeper, brown to tan colored slopes mark the central cone of the volcano at the islandís center. The summit crater, Queen Maryís Peak, sits at an elevation of 2,060 meters above sea level. While geologic evidence indicates that eruptions have occurred from the central crater, lavas have also erupted from flank vents along the sides of the volcano as well as smaller cinder cones. The last known eruption of Tristan da Cunha took place 1961-1962 and forced evacuation of the only settlement on the island, Edinburgh of the Seven Seas. The settlement is located along the northern coastline of the island (obscured by clouds in this image). This is considered to be the most remote permanent settlement on Earth, with its citizenís nearest neighbors located 2,173 kilometers to the northeast on the island of St. Helena.