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Sari and the Alborz Mountains, Northern Iran

36.5N 53.0E

December 31st, 2009 Category: Snapshots

Iran - December 14th, 2009

Iran - December 14th, 2009

This orthorectified image stretches from the southern coast of the Caspian Sea to the northern slopes of the Alborz Mountains in Iran. The large white patch is the city of Sari, the provincial capital of Mazandaran. Its population is estimated to be 261,293, as of 2006, and it has a land area of 5,089 square kilometers.

The Alborz Mountains in northern Iran stretch from the borders of Armenia in the northwest to the southern end of the Caspian Sea, and end in the east at the borders of Turkmenistan and Afghanistan. The tallest mountain in the Middle East, Mount Damavand, is located in the range.

The Alborz mountain range forms a barrier between the south Caspian and the Qazvin-Tehran plateau. It is only 60-130 km wide and consists of sedimentary series dating from Upper Devonian to Oligocene, prevalently Jurassic limestone over a granite core.

Agriculture Along the Border of Bahia, Brazil

12S 45.7W

December 30th, 2009 Category: Snapshots

Brazil - November 15th, 2009

Brazil - November 15th, 2009

The north-south border between the Brazilian states of Bahia (right) and Tocantins (left, above) and Goias (left, below) appears as a line running down the left side of the image.

Tan agricultural areas stretch eastward into the state of Bahia from the border, while the terrain on the Tocantins and Goias side is bright green. In the agricultural areas, both rectangular and circular fields can be seen upon opening the full image.

The border actually runs along the edge of a 800 to 1000 meter high plateau in Bahia. The states of Tocantins and Goias lie below, after a drop-off of 200 meters.

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.

Mountains in Southwestern China

30.3N 97.0E

December 29th, 2009 Category: Snapshots

China - October 5th, 2009

China - October 5th, 2009

China’s topography ranges from mostly plateaus and mountains in the west to lower lands in the east. Southern China is dominated by hills and low mountain ranges. This image focuses on southwestern China,  including parts of the Tibet Region and Sichuan Province, north of Myanmar and extreme northeastern India. The mountain peaks are capped with snow, while rivers below them appear greenish tan from sediments.

China’s southwest has a vast calcareous tableland traversed by hill ranges of moderate elevation, and the Himalayas, containing Earth’s highest point, Mount Everest. During many dynasties, the southwestern border of China has been the high mountains and deep valleys of Yunnan, which separate modern China from Burma, Laos and Vietnam.

Cape Kumukahi and Hilo, in Hawaii, USA

19.7N 155W

December 28th, 2009 Category: Snapshots

USA - December 18th, 2009

USA - December 18th, 2009

This orthorectified image of eastern Hawaii includes Cape Kumukahi, the easternmost point of the island chain. The cape lies at the end of the east rift zone of the slopes of Kilauea and has been threatened several times by eruptions.

Moving westward along the coast from the cape, the city of Hilo can be seen along the shores of Hilo Bay. It is the largest settlement on the island of Hawaii, and the second largest settlement in the state. The population was 40,759 at the 2000 census.