A VOYAGE TO TERRA AUSTRALIS

A Voyage to Terra Australis

Terra Australis was a hypothetical continent first posited in antiquity which appeared on maps between the 15th and 18th centuries.

Although the landmass was drawn onto maps, it was not based on any actual surveying but rather on the hypothesis that continents in the Northern Hemisphere should be balanced by land in the Southern Hemisphere.

In the early 1800s, British navigator and cartographer Matthew Flinders had popularized the naming of Australia after Terra Australis, giving his rationale that there was "no probability" of finding any significant land mass anywhere more South than Australia.

Antarctica would be explored decades after Flinders' 1814 book was published, based on his two year circumnavigation of Australia (July 1801 - June 1803) to determine it was actually a continent. The book told in great detail of his explorations of unknown coastline areas of what Flinders took to be as "Terra Australis Incognita"

Named in honor of a fellow naval officer, The Sir Edward Pellew Group of Islands is situated in the south-west corner of the Gulf of Carpentaria. The group includes Vanderlin-North-West-Center and South West Island (Visible Top-Right).


The inset photograph was taken using an 1150mm lens from the Cupola of International Space Station.

This is the 8th and final post in a series highlighting ten photographs taken during one pass over the continent one year ago today (August 3rd, 2015).

During which time the @iss traveled* a total of 1600 km (1000 miles) in just under 4 minutes. (*Between Nadir Points : distance over ground)

The entire continent was traversed SW to NE in less than 6.5 minutes. Comparing this to Flinders' two year circumnavigation of Australia over 200 years ago, the Station rounds the globe every 92 minutes.

Image Timestamp: 2015-08-03 07:09:27 UTC ISS Nadir position: 17.46°S, 136.7°E Image Geolocation: 15.7640°S, 136.606°E

Image Timestamp: 2015-08-03 07:09:27 UTC
ISS Nadir position: 17.46°S, 136.7°E
Image Geolocation: 15.7640°S, 136.606°E

Source Image : ISS044-E-27606 Focal Length: 1150mm

Source Image : ISS044-E-27606
Focal Length: 1150mm

SOURCE DATA

  • Geohistorical Text : Wikipedia
  • Calculations : WolframAlpha Pro
  • Satellite Imagery: ESRI ArcGIS
  • Overlay Source Image: NASA Johnson