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Volcanoes of La Réunion – December 31st, 2009

20.9S 55.4E

December 31st, 2009 Category: Image of the day, Volcanoes

La Réunion - December 11th, 2009

La Réunion - December 11th, 2009

This orthorectified image portrays the island of La Reunion, which is 63 kilometres (39 mi) long, 45 kilometres (28 mi) wide, and covers 2,512 square kilometres (970 sq mi). It is similar to the island of Hawaii insofar as both are located above hotspots in the Earth’s crust.

On the eastern end of the island, the Piton de la Fournaise shield volcano rises to more than 2,631 metres (8,630 ft) above sea level. It is sometimes considered a sister to Hawaiian volcanoes because of the similarity of climate and volcanic nature. The volcano is very active, having erupted more than 100 times since 1640, and is thus monitored constantly.

Another volcano, the Piton des Neiges is located northwest of the Piton de la Fournaise. It is the highest point on the island at 3,070 metres (10,100 ft) above sea level. Collapsed calderas and canyons can also be observed southwest of the mountain. Unlike its active neighbor, the Piton des Neiges is extinct.

Geography of Italy’s Veneto Region – December 30th, 2009

45.4N 12.3E

December 30th, 2009 Category: Image of the day, Snapshots

Italy - November 30th, 2009

Italy - November 30th, 2009

Veneto is the eighth largest region in Italy, with a total area of 18,398.9 km2 (7,103.9 sq mi). It is located in the north-eastern part of Italy and is bordered by four other Italian regions and Austria. The north-south extension of Veneto is 210 km (130 mi) from the Austrian border to the mouth of the Po and its east-west extension is 195 km (121 mi) from the eastern shore of Lake Garda on the west to the mouth of the River Tagliamento on the east.

Veneto can be divided into four areas, parts of which are all visible in this orthorectified image: the northern Alpine zone, the hill zone, the lower plain and the coastal territory. Twenty-nine% of its surface is mountainous (Carnic Alps, eastern Dolomites and Venetian Prealps). The best known massif in the Dolomites is the Marmolada, while the highest, at 3,342 m (10,960 ft), is the Tofane-massif. The Venetian Prealps are not as high and range between 700 m (2,300 ft) and 2,200 m (7,200 ft).

Fifty-seven% of the Veneto region is covered by the Po Valley, a plain extending from the mountains to the Adriatic Sea, broken only by some low hills: Colli Berici, Colli Euganei, Colli Asolani and Montello, which constitute the remaining 14% of the territory. The Venetian plain itself is subdivided into the higher plain (gravel-strewn and not very fertile) and the lower plain (rich in water sources and arable terrain). The lower plain is both a mainstay of agricultural production and the most populated part of the region.

Several rivers traverse the region: the Po, Adige, Brenta, Bacchiglione, Livenza, Piave, and Tagliamento. The eastern shore of the largest lake in Italy, Lake Garda, belongs to Veneto. The coastline covers approximately 200 km (120 mi), of which 100 km (62 mi) are beaches. The coasts of the Adriatic Sea are characterized by the Venetian Lagoon,  visible near the shores on the right, a flat terrain with ponds, marshes and islands. The Po Delta to the south features sandbars and dunes along the coastline. The inland portion contains cultivable land recently reclaimed by a system of canals and dikes.  The delta is a stopping-point for migratory birds.

The Islands of Viti Levu and Ovalau, Fiji – December 29th, 2009

18.1S 178.4E

December 29th, 2009 Category: Image of the day, Rivers

Fiji - December 19th, 2009

Fiji - December 19th, 2009

This orthorectified image focuses on the island of Viti Levu, the largest island in the Republic of Fiji. Viti Levu is the site of the nation’s capital, Suva, visible on a peninsula near the Rewa River.

The island is home to 70% of the population (about 600,000) and is the hub of the entire Fijian archipelago. It measures 146 kilometers long and 106 kilometers wide and has an area of 10,389 square kilometers.

Geologists believe that Viti Levu has been submerged a number of times, and has been covered by lava and other volcanic materials. Earthquakes and volcanic eruptions account for the somewhat rugged terrain of the island, which is divided into roughly equal halves by a north-south mountain range. The centre of the island includes the nation’s highest peak Mount Tomanivi (otherwise Mt. Victoria) rising to 1,324 meters.

Several other islands can be seen near Viti Levu, the largest of which is Ovalau, the sixth largest island in Fiji’s Lomaiviti archipelago. Situated 60 km north east from the national capital Suva and 20 km off the east coast of Viti Levu, the island is about 13 kilometers long and 10 kilometers wide. It covers a total area of 102.3 square kilometers and has a population of around 9,000, approximately half the Lomaiviti population.

Ovalau is characterized by its rugged topography, with little flat land apart from the Lovoni Valley in the centre of the island. The island is an eroded volcanic crater with a narrow belt of flat to udulating country between the encircling lagoon and the steep crater sides. The highest peaks are Nadelaiovalau, with an altitude of 625 meters, in the east, and Tomuna, 526 meters, in the south.

Reservoir on Narmada River, India – December 28th, 2009

23.2N 77.4E

December 28th, 2009 Category: Image of the day, Lakes, Rivers

India - December 9th, 2009
India – December 9th, 2009

The Narmada River in central India is the fifth largest river in the Indian subcontinent. It forms the traditional boundary between North India and South India and flows westwards over a length of 1,312 km (815.2 mi) before draining into the Arabian Sea. It is one of only three major rivers in pensinsular India that runs from east to west. It is also the only river in India that flows in a rift valley flowing west between the Satpura and Vindhya ranges.

In this orthorectified image, the Narmada can be seen connected to a large reservoir that is part of the Indira Sagar Project, a multipurpose key Project of Madhya Pradesh on the Narmada River at Narmadanagar in the Khandwa District of Madhya Pradesh. The construction of main dam started in 1992. Total catchment area at the dam site is 61642 km2.

The Wasatch Range, East of the Great Salt Lake, USA – December 26th, 2009

41.0N 112.4W

December 26th, 2009 Category: Image of the day, Lakes

USA - December 1st, 2009

USA - December 1st, 2009

The Wasatch Range is a mountain range that stretches about 160 miles (260 km) from the Utah-Idaho border, south through central Utah in the western United States. It is generally considered the western edge of the greater Rocky Mountains, and the eastern edge of the Great Basin region.

The northern extension of the Wasatch Range, the Bear River Mountains, extends into Idaho from northern Utah after running east of the Great Salt Lake in this orthorectified image.

North of the Lucin Cutoff, a causeway crossing the lake that appears here as a white line, are a series of bays that extend towards the mountains. These bays of the Great Salt Lake include Bear River Bay, Willard Bay, North Bay and South Bay.