I just stumbled onto [url:2jmbpm32]http://www2.jpl.nasa.gov/srtm/[/url:2jmbpm32] which says:
"This is the SRTM home page. The Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) obtained elevation data on a near-global scale to generate the most complete high-resolution digital topographic database of Earth. SRTM consisted of a specially modified radar system that flew onboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour during an 11-day mission in February of 2000.
SRTM is an international project spearheaded by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)."
This makes it more interesting:
"Australian Data Release
NASA has released the SRTM data set for Australia, New Zealand, and numerous South Pacific islands. There are about 1200 data ‘cells’ in this release, each measuring one by one degree of latitude and longitude. They represent the final set of unedited data from the SRTM mission to be released.
As with the other SRTM data for regions outside the United States the new set is sampled at 3 arc-seconds, which is 1/1200th of a degree of latitude and longitude, or about 90 meters (295 feet). Because of persistent cloud cover many of the Pacific islands had previously been very poorly mapped, if at all.
February 2, 2006"