Yates Oilfield, West Texas - related image preview

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Yates Oilfield, West Texas - related image preview

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Yates Oilfield, West Texas - related image preview


Yates Oilfield, West Texas

The Permian Basin of west Texas and southeastern New Mexico is one of the most productive petroleum provinces of North America. The area holds one of the thickest deposits of rock from the Permian Period, which lasted from approximately 290 to 251 million years ago. The Basin is a large depression in the bedrock surface along the southern edge of the North American craton, an ancient core of continental crust. The Basin filled with thick layers of sediment during the Paleozoic Era (about 545 to 251 million years ago) as the region was alternately covered by shallow oceans, or exposed as coastal salt flats. The sediments hardened into primarily organic-rich carbonate and minerals such as common table salt. Later activity in the Earth’s crust caused folding of the sedimentary layers, creating ideal conditions for the formation, trapping, and storage of petroleum. In this astronaut photograph, numerous white well locations and petroleum drilling structures mark the Yates Oil Field in the layered sedimentary rocks of the Permian Basin.

Astronaut photograph ISS013-E-26488 was acquired May 25, 2006, with a Kodak 760C digital camera using an 800 mm lens, and is provided by the ISS Crew Earth Observations experiment and the Image Science & Analysis Group, Johnson Space Center. The image in this article has been cropped and enhanced to improve contrast. The International Space Station Program supports the laboratory to help astronauts take pictures of Earth that will be of the greatest value to scientists and the public, and to make those images freely available on the Internet. Additional images taken by astronauts and cosmonauts can be viewed at the NASA/JSC Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth.

Published July 24, 2006
Data acquired May 25, 2006

ISS > Digital Camera
Astronaut Photography