STS100-713-064 (19 April - 1 May 2001) ---This southerly-looking view, captured with a 70mm camera onboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour, shows the triangular-shaped island of Sicily. With only very limited coastal plains the island's topography consists of rugged hills and low mountains. Snow- capped Mt. Etna, one of the world's most instrumented volcanoes, is visible near the northeast point of the island. Two other distinctive features in this image are the lighter-colored zone of suspended sediment in the water along the southern coast and, in the distance, the smaller islands of Malta.
STS-110 Shuttle Mission...
STS110-740-098 (8-19 April 2002) --- An astronaut aboard the Space Shuttle Atlantis took this 70mm photo of Mt. Etna near the east coast of Sicily. According to geologists, several specific landforms that include Mt. Etna, a series of volcanic islands known as the Lipari Islands (immediately north of northeast Sicily), and the broadly conical-shaped mountains near the southern tip of the "toe" of Italy help to confirm that this part of Italy was formed at least in part by volcanic processes. Mt. Etna to this day continues to be a very active volcano. The Strait of Messina separates Sicily from the mainland of Italy. The strait measures 3.2 kilometers (2 miles) at its narrowest point. Clouds obscure some the mountainous terrain both in northeast Sicily and on the mainland of Italy. The island state of Malta, located 93 kilometers (58 miles) south of Sicily, is also visible in the lower right corner of the image.
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