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Barisan Mountains on Western Side of Sumatra, Indonesia

0.9N 99.4E

March 18th, 2011 Category: Mountains

Indonesia - February 18th, 2011

This APM image shows part of the Bukit Barisan or the Barisan Mountains on the western side of Sumatra, Indonesia. The range covers nearly 1,700 km (1,050 mi) of the island.

The Barisan Mountains consist primarily of volcanoes. The highest peak of the range is Mount Kerinci at 3,800 metres (12,467 ft). The section of the range visible here is located mostly in the province of North Sumatra, near the border with the province of West Sumatra.

Haruj and Ergs Ubari and Murzuq in Central Libya

26.7N 13.9E

November 22nd, 2010 Category: Deserts, Volcanoes

Libya - November 9th, 2010

The large, circular brown area in the midst of the Libyan Desert, south of the Mediterranean Sea, is the Haruj Volcanic Field. The field stretches over 45000 km2 in the central part of the country.

To the east and southeast of the Haruj are two large ergs, or sand dune seas, separated by a ridge of sandstone. The erg north of the mountains is Erg Ubari (also called Awbari), while the one to the south is Erg Murzuq (also called Murzuk).

Southern Italy from Bari to Taranto

40.5N 17.2E

March 15th, 2010 Category: Snapshots

Italy - February 18th, 2010

Italy - February 18th, 2010

This orthorectified image of Apulia in southern Italy stretches from Taranto, on the shores of the Gulf of Taranto (below) to Bari, on the shores of the Adriatic Sea (above).

Taranto is an important commercial and military port. It has well-developed steel and iron foundries, oil refineries, chemical works, some shipyards for building warships, and food-processing factories.

As a consequence of the poisons discharged into the air by the factories on its territory, Taranto is the most polluted city in Italy and western Europe. As a matter of fact, only 7% of Taranto’s pollution is inhabitants-related: 93% is factories-related.

Every year Taranto’s inhabitants inhale 2.7 carbon monoxide tons and 57.7 carbon dioxide tons. The latest data provided by the INES, the Italian National Institute of Emissions and Their Sources, confirm that Taranto is comparable to the Chinese Linfen and the Romanian Copşa Mică, the most polluted cities in the world due to factory emissions.

Ubari and Murzuq sand seas, Libya – September 9th, 2008

September 9th, 2008 Category: Image of the day

September 8th, 2008 - Ubari and Murzuq sand seas, LibyaLibya

September 8th, 2008 - Ubari and Murzuq sand seas, Libya

This Envisat image shows two huge sand dune seas in the Fezzan region of southwestern Libya, close to the border with Algeria.

Most of the face of the Sahara desert stretching across Northern Africa is bare stone and pebbles rather than sand dunes, but there are exceptions – sprawling seas of multi-storey sand dunes known as ‘ergs’.

The Erg Ubari (also called Awbari) is the reddish sand sea towards the top of the image. A dark outcrop of Nubian sandstone separates the Erg Ubari sand from the Erg Murzuq (also called Murzuk) further south.

A persistent high-pressure zone centred over Libya keeps the heart of the Sahara completely arid for years at a time, but research has discovered evidence of ‘paleolakes’ in this region associated with a wetter and more fertile past.

Sahara, Libya

Dunes detail, Sahara - Libya

Libya today has no permanent rivers or water bodies, but has various vast fossil aquifers. These natural underground basins hold enormous amounts of fresh water.

Two decades ago an ambitious project called Great Man-Made River was begun, aimed at drawing water from the aquifers beneath the Fezzan region shown in the image, via a network of underground pipes for irrigation in the coastal belt. Upon completion the huge network of pipelines will extend to about 3,380 km.

source ESA

Cap Vert Between Senegal and Gambia Rivers, Senegal

14.7N 17.3W

February 23rd, 2012 Category: Rivers

Gambia and Senegal - January 31st, 2012

Visible at the top of this wide-swath ASAR image is the Sénégal River, a 1,790 km (1,110 mi) long river in West Africa that forms the border between Senegal and Mauritania. The Sénégal’s headwaters are the Semefé (Bakoye) and Bafing rivers which both originate in Guinea. Later in its course, the Senegal River flows through semi-arid land in the north of Senegal, forming the border with Mauritania, and into the Atlantic. It is separated from the Atlantic Ocean by a thin strip of sand called the Langue de Barbarie before it pours into the ocean itself.

Visible near the bottom edge is the Gambia River, which runs 1,130 kilometres (700 mi) from the Fouta Djallon plateau in north Guinea westward through Senegal and The Gambia to the Atlantic Ocean at the city of Banjul. About 100 km from its mouth it gradually widens to over 10 km wide where it meets the sea.

Protruding off the coast between the two rivers is Cap-Vert, a peninsula in Senegal, and the westernmost point of the continent of Africa and of the Old World mainland. Cap-Vert is a rocky promontory extending west from the main sandy areas of Senegal. Dakar, the capital of Senegal, is located near the southern tip. Twin volcanic cones, the Deux Mamelles (“Two Teats”), dominate the landscape along the coast northwest of Dakar.