ISS EarthKAM header ISS EarthKAM Logo International Space Station EarthKAM NASA logo Sally Ride Science logo

KML Guide

KML (Keyhole Markup Language) is a file format used to display geographic data in an Earth browser such as Google Earth, Google Maps, and Google Maps for mobile.

Visit Google for more information.

How do I use them?

Each of our EarthKAM images has a KML file associated with it. By downloading the KML file and using it in an application such as Google Earth, you can see a photograph placed on top of a three-dimensional model of Earth in its actual location. In addition, we've grouped surrounding images with the image you are working with so that you will also see other EarthKAM images; we found that this gave helpful context to users.

Getting Started

  1. Download and install Google Earth (a free program).
  2. Find an image you would like to work with in the EarthKAM image gallery.
  3. Click the “Download KML” link.
  4. You will be asked if you would like to run Google Earth; say yes.
  5. On the left, under Places, you will see the new file (ek_ccfid_XXXXX.kml). Clicking on the file will orient your camera to the images you are working with (note the KML file is a set of images, so you can expand that "folder" and click on any of the images within it to center).