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Out of this world

Ayers Rock (Uluru), Australia

Story by UrtheCast Gallery August 5th, 2016

There’s no denying that Ayers Rock has an other-worldly quality to it.

Jutting out from the desert flats in Australia’s Northwestern Territory, the Ayers rock formation — a UNESCO World Heritage Site — is an important cultural icon for the indigenous Anangu people.

Made of sandstone, the monolith (or tor) spans 3 kms at its widest point, and rises ~350 meters into the sky above the desert ground. Its air of mystery aside, geologists explain that it was formed from an alluvial fan that developed in an ancient shallow sea.

The monolith’s impressive striations can be seen particularly nicely in the image below, captured when the sun angle was low.

Image captured by UrtheCast’s Iris camera aboard the International Space Station.

Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Petermann, Northern Territory, Australia