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Devastating 8.8 Magnitude Earthquake Shakes Chile – March 1st, 2010

35.3S 72.4W

March 1st, 2010 Category: Earthquakes, Image of the day

Chile - February 28th, 2010

Chile - February 28th, 2010

Chile has begun to count the cost of its deadly earthquake as nations around the Pacific eased their fears of a devastating tsunami. The quake, which occurred on Saturday morning, killed at least 350 people – 90% of them in their homes. It is feared the damage may cost tens of billions of dollars.

The epicenter was offshore of Chile’s Maule Region, near the city of Concepción, about 325 km (200 miles) southwest of Santiago. However, the effects of the 8.8 magnitude quake were felt as far away as Sao Paulo, Brazil – a distance of about 2850 kilometers.

It is the largest earthquake to hit Chile in 50 years and the sixth strongest ever recorded – 100 times stronger than the one that hit Haiti in January.  Over 50 aftershocks have been recorded.

The epicenter of the quake was towards the center of this image; Santiago is located towards the top. Upon opening the full version, the majority of the Chilean coast can be observed, from the Atacama Desert in the North to Patagonia in the South.

The death toll looks set to rise, following reports that about 350 people died in the town of Constitución alone. Chilean President Michelle Bachelet said that two million people had been affected by the earthquake. Many Chileans in affected areas have spent the first night since the earthquake outdoors, afraid to stay inside.

Meanwhile fears of a devastating tsunami across the Pacific receded on Sunday. About 50 Pacific countries and territories had issued tsunami alerts, although on Sunday the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center lifted its Pacific-wide alert. Japan has maintained an alert, issuing evacuation orders for 320,000 people around the coast. However, it downgraded it from major to normal – meaning waves of two metres were expected rather than three. French Polynesia and Tahiti were among those hit by high waves, but no casualties have been reported.

Eruption from Puyehue Volcano, Chile – June 12th, 2011

40.5S 72.1W

June 12th, 2011 Category: Volcanoes

Chile and Argentina - June 5th, 2011

This image shows ash blasting forth from the Puyehue Volcano in Chile. Here, the ash plume is blowing towards the southeast. Recent activity at the volcano has resulted in alert level 4 (out of 4) being issued on 03 June 2011.

A new eruption started as of 03 June, 20:30 UTC. As of 04 June, the ash cloud reached a height of 10,000 metres (32,810 ft). Click on the following link for previous articles on the 2011 Puyehue eruption.

Puyehue and Cordón Caulle are two coalesced volcanic vents that form a major mountain massif in Puyehue National Park in the Andes of Ranco Province, Chile. In volcanology this group is known as the Puyehue-Cordón Caulle Volcanic Complex (PCCVC).

Four different volcanoes constitute the volcanic group or complex, the Cordillera Nevada caldera, the Pliocene Mencheca volcano, Cordón Caulle fissure vents and the Puyehue stratovolcano.

As with most stratovolcanoes on the Southern Volcanic Zone of the Andes, Puyehue and Cordón Caulle are located along the intersection of a traverse fault with the larger north-south Liquiñe-Ofqui Fault.

The volcanic complex has shaped the local landscape and produced a huge variety of volcanic landforms and products over the last 300,000 years. Cinder cones, lava domes, calderas and craters can be found in the area apart from the widest variety of volcanic rocks in all the Southern Volcanic Zone,for example both primitive basalts and rhyolites. Cordón Caulle is notable for having erupted following the 1960 Valdivia earthquake, the largest recorded earthquake in history.



Coast of Maule and Interior of Biobío Regions, Chile

36.6S 72.1W

December 3rd, 2010 Category: Mountains

Chile - December 1st, 2010

This orthorectified image focuses on the Chilean regions of Maule and Biobío. In the full image, the majority of land along the coast belongs to the former, while the southernmost part of the coastline and most of the terrain inland belongs to the latter.

Also visible in the full image is the city of Chillán, appearing as a large white area. Chillán is a city in the Biobío Region located about 400 km (249 mi) south of the country’s capital, Santiago, near the geographical center of the country and near the Andes Mountains. The city was heavily affected by the 2010 Chilean earthquake.

Ship Tracks off the Coast of Chile

38.8S 75.2W

October 21st, 2010 Category: Clouds

Argentina - October 12th, 2010

The two opaque white parallel lines of clouds cutting through the more through the translucent surrounding cloud cover are an atmospheric phenomenon known as ship tracks. Similar to airplane condensation trails, they form when water molecules gather around the exhaust released into the air by ships.

Parts of Chile and Argentina can be seen in the right half of the image. Although much of Chile is obscured by heavy cloud cover, some snow-capped ridges of the Andes Mountains can be observed, and the Argentine Patagonia terrain is cloud-free.

In related news about Chile, a 5.8-magnitude quake shook the central part of the country late on Wednesday, swaying buildings in the capital Santiago, but causing no damage, emergency officials said.

The quake’s epicenter was offshore in the Pacific Ocean 196 miles west-southwest of Santiago and at a depth of 4.2 miles (6.7), the U.S. Geological Survey said.

In February, Chile was struck by an 8.8-magnitude quake, one of the biggest in recorded history, killing more than 500 people and ravaging towns and industries in south-central Chile.

Chiloé Island in Southern Chile’s Los Lagos Region

42.4S 73.7W

March 9th, 2010 Category: Mountains

Chile - February 25th, 2010

Chile - February 25th, 2010

Chiloé Island (Spanish: Isla de Chiloé), also known as Greater Island of Chiloé (Isla Grande de Chiloé), is the largest island of the Chiloé Archipelago off the coast of Chile, in the Pacific Ocean. The island is located in southern Chile, in the Los Lagos Region, visible here in the lower left quadrant.

The effects of the recent Chilean earthquake were felt as far south as Chiloé Island. Argentina has sent construction teams there to help reconstruct some of the washed away coastal buildings.

Chiloé Island (8,394 km², 3241 sq mi), is the second largest island in Chile (and the fifth largest in South America), after the Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego. It is separated from the Chilean mainland by the Chacao Strait (“Canal Chacao”) to the north, and by the Gulf of Ancud (Golfo de Ancud) and the Gulf of Corcovado (Golfo Corcovado) to the east; the Pacific ocean lies to the west, and the Chonos Archipelago lies to the south, across the Boca del Guafo.

The island is 190 km (118 mi) from north to south, and averages 55–65 km wide (35 to 40 mi). The capital is Castro, on the east side of the island; the second largest town is Ancud, at the island’s northwest corner, and there are several smaller port towns on the east side of the island, such as Quellón, Dalcahue and Chonchi.

Chiloé Island and the Chonos Archipelago are a southern extension of the Chilean coastal range, which runs north and south, parallel to the Pacific coast and the Andes Mountains. The Chilean Central Valley lies between the coastal mountains and the Andes, of which the Gulfs of Ancud and Corcovado form the southern extension. Mountains run north and south along the spine of the island. The east coast is deeply indented, with several natural harbors and numerous smaller islands.