Earth Snapshot RSS Feed Twitter

Posts tagged Tasman Sea

Cook Strait Between New Zealand’s North and South Islands – December 10th, 2009

41.2S 174.4E

December 10th, 2009 Category: Image of the day, Lakes, Volcanoes

New Zealand - November 24th, 2009

New Zealand - November 24th, 2009

The Cook Strait separates the North and South Islands of New Zealand, connecting the Tasman Sea on the west with the South Pacific Ocean on the east.

To the south the coast runs runs 30 km along Cloudy Bay and past the islands and entrances to the Marlborough Sounds. To the north the coast runs 40 km along Palliser Bay, crosses the entrance to Wellington Harbour, past some Wellington suburbs and continues another 15 km to Makara beach.

Cook Strait is one of the most dangerous and unpredictable waters in the world. At its narrowest point 23 km separate Cape Terawhiti in the North Island from Perano Head on Arapawa Island in the Marlborough Sounds. Counter-intuitively, at this point the South Island coast lies further north than that of the North Island.

Other points of interest visible on the North Island in this image include Lake Taupo, the large body of water near the top, snow-capped Mount Ruapehu south of the lake, and the also snow-tipped Mount Taranaki (also known as Mount Egmont) on the left edge.

Auckland, Between the Hauraki Gulf and the Manukau Harbour, New Zealand – December 7th, 2009

36.8S 174.7E

December 7th, 2009 Category: Image of the day

New Zealand - November 13th, 2009

New Zealand - November 13th, 2009

The Auckland metropolitan area on New Zealand‘s North Island, visible in this orthorectified image as an extensive white area, is the largest and most populous urban area in the country. Its population is approaching 1.4 million residents, 31 percent of the population of New Zealand.

Auckland lies between the Hauraki Gulf of the Pacific Ocean to the east, the low Hunua Ranges to the south-east, the Manukau Harbour to the south-west, and the Waitakere Ranges and smaller ranges to the west and north-west. The central part of the urban area occupies a narrow isthmus between the Manukau Harbour on the Tasman Sea and the Waitemata Harbour on the Pacific Ocean. It is one of the few cities in the world to have harbours on two separate major bodies of water.

Auckland also straddles the Auckland Volcanic Field, which has produced approximately 50 volcanoes. These take the form of cones, lakes, lagoons, islands and depressions, and several have produced extensive lava flows. Most of the cones have been partly or completely quarried away. The individual volcanoes are all considered extinct, although the volcanic field itself is merely dormant.

Sydney, Australia

33.8S 151.2E

August 14th, 2009 Category: Rivers

Australia - July 13th, 2009

Australia - July 13th, 2009

Sydney is the largest city in Australia, with a metropolitan area population of approximately 4.34 million (2008 estimate). It is the state capital of New South Wales, and was the site of the first British colony in Australia.

Situated on Australia’s south-east coast along an inlet of the Tasman Sea, Sydney is built on low hills surrounding Port Jackson. The metropolitan area is surrounded by national parks, and contains many bays, rivers and inlets.

One such river is the Nepean, visible near the left edge of this orthorectified image. The headwaters of the Nepean River rise near Robertson, about 100 kilometres south of Sydney and about 15 kilometres from the coast. The river flows north in an unpopulated water catchment area into Nepean Dam, which supplies water for Sydney.

Forecast Change: Jasper Now Expected to Change Direction, Weaken

March 25th, 2009 Category: Tropical Cyclones

Track of Tropical Cyclone 23P (Jasper) - March 25th, 2009 © Univ. of Wisconsin

Track of Tropical Cyclone 23P (Jasper) - March 25th, 2009


TC 23P

Tropical Cyclone 23P (Jasper), located approximately 205 nautical miles west-northwest of Noumea, New Caledonia, has tracked southeastward at 12 knots over the past six hours. Maximum significant wave height is 12 feet.

Observation of an exposed low level circulation center (LLCC) in recent animated multispectral satellite imagery lends confidence to the initial position. The current intensity estimate is consistent with recent agency Dvorak t-numbers ranging from 2.0 to 3.0.

The forecast philosophy for TC 23P has changed significantly since the previous warning. Increasing northwesterly vertical wind shear has displaced nearly all deep convection associated with this cyclone well to the southeast of the LLCC. The steering level for the storm has lowered as a consequence of this shear and a resultant ongoing weakening trend.

Therefore, the storm is now expected to follow strong southeasterly low to mid-level flow analyzed to the southwest. This southeasterly flow will begin to steer the LLCC equatorward by TAU 12.

As the storm turns equatorward, persistent vertical wind shear will offset the favorable influences of strong poleward outflow and warm sea surface temperatures, causing the system to weaken below the 35 knot warning threshold by TAU 36.

Current Vortex off Australian Coast – February 21st, 2009

February 21st, 2009 Category: Image of the day

Shark Bay, Southwestern Australia - February 19th, 2009

Shark Bay, Southwestern Australia - February 19th, 2009

The East Australian Current flows from North to South along the eastern coast of Australia. It is the result of the collision of the South Equatorial Current colliding with the Australian mainland.

In shallower waters along the Australian continental shelf the East Australian Current may be as fast as 7 knots, but its speed in most places is usually around 2 or 3 knots.

The East Australian Current causes a current vortex in the Tasman Sea between Australia and New Zealand, visible here near the center.

It has also been noted that this current transports tropical marine fauna to habitats in sub-tropical regions along the south east Australian coast.