NASA

Frequently Asked Questions

Which web browsers are able to display the maps?

The maps are displayed using HTML 5 / Javascript. Almost all modern web browsers support this, though the code is quite CPU intensive and probably won't run too well on mobile devices.

The maps will not display on Microsoft Internet Explorer 8 and earlier, as these browsers do not support HTML5.

Why are the maps flat north of 60°N and south of 60°S?

Our maps are based on elevation data collected from NASA's Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) in 2000. While making these maps, NASA's Space Shuttle flew over the Earth, using radar to measure the height of the terrain below.

The Space Shuttle only flew over all latitudes between 60°S and 60°N. The particular orbit that the Shuttle was in meant that it never flew over the north and south polar regions, and so no data is available there.