In honor of Sun-Earth Day 2005, Space Imaging has created a special IKONOS satellite image gallery of 13 ancient observatories around the world. Known for their ability to precisely align with the sun, moon and stars, these observatories are scientific marvels – then and now. The IKONOS satellite imagery captures the beauty of these ancient structures and allows viewers to see the architecture in relationship to its surroundings, creating a wonderful visual experience and providing a way to recognize Sun-Earth Day.

The development of the gallery coincides with the vernal (Spring) equinox in the northern hemisphere, taking place on March 20, 2005. The equinox occurs twice per year when the sun crosses the celestial equator and when night and day are nearly the same length. Space Imaging designed its Ancient Observatories satellite gallery as an adjunct to the NASA and Exploratorium multimedia project “Ancient Observatories: Timeless Knowledge,” which is aimed at students and museums and focuses on the link between ancient and modern observatories:

The 13 satellite images are available on Space Imaging’s Web site at

  • Abu Simbel, Egypt
  • Angkor Wat, Cambodia
  • Chichén Itzá, Yucatan, Mexico
  • Casa Rinconada, Chaco Canyon, New Mexico
  • Dzibilchaltun, Yucatan, Mexico
  • Easter Island, Chile
  • Hovenweep National Monument, Utah
  • Machu Picchu, Peru
  • Mayapan, Yucatan, Mexico
  • Pueblo Bonito, Chaco Canyon, New Mexico
  • Stonehenge, Great Britain
  • Teotihuacan, Mexico
  • Uxmal, Yucatan, Mexico

All of the images were taken from 423 miles in space as IKONOS moved over the Earth in a north-to-south orbit at 17,000 mph. Users will be able to zoom in and out of images and explore every detail of these historic landmarks. Since IKONOS ushered in a new era of commercial high-resolution Earth imagery, it has documented the ever-changing world with more than 1.7 million images – the most of any commercial high-resolution satellite.

Many of these images and hundreds of other satellite images can be purchased as posters at Space Imaging’s online Poster Store at

About Space Imaging

Space Imaging is the premier provider of satellite imagery enabling businesses, governments and individuals to better map, measure, monitor and manage the world in which we live. Based near Denver, Colo., Space Imaging radically transformed the Earth information market when in 1999 it launched IKONOS, the world’s first commercial high-resolution imaging satellite. Today, Space Imaging’s products are the cornerstone of the remote-sensing industry. For more information on products and services, please visit