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Ship Tracks and Phytoplankton by Kamchatka Peninsula, Russia

53.7N 161.7E

June 23rd, 2010 Category: Clouds, Phytoplankton

Russia - June 1st, 2010

Russia - June 1st, 2010

This image of the Kamchatka Peninsula in the Russian Far East contains two interesting atmospheric and oceanographic phenomena: ship tracks, visible in the lower left quadrant, and a phytoplankton bloom, just off the coast of the peninsula in the upper part of the full image.

The ship tracks, which look like long linear clouds, form due to the gathering of water molecules around the exhaust released into the air by passing ships.

The green phytoplankton bloom, which is faint and best observed by opening the full image, is caused by increased reproduction of phytoplankton in an area that leads to a high concentration of those microorganisms and alters the color of the water.

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