Our Earth as Art

The USGS and NASA have an online collection of spectacular satellite images acquired by the Landsat 7 satellite.  Each image is color enhanced to show astonishing patterns, abstractions and fantastic shapes.

Edrengiyn Nuruu

Shown above is the Edrengiyn Nuruu, which forms a transition zone between the Mongolian steppes to the north and the arid deserts of northern China to the south.

Volcanoes  2117

Steep-sided volcanic cones along the Chilian-Argentinean border form blue patterns.   Of approximately 1,800 volcanoes scattered across this region, 28 are active.  Image by ASTER

Dardzha Peninsula Turkmenistan 2635

Looking like an orge with something gooey in its mouth, the Dardzha Peninsula in western Turkmenistan lies among the shallow coastal terraces of the Caspian Sea.

West Fjords 2062

The West Fjords are a series of peninsulas in northwestern Iceland. They represent less than one-eighth the country’s land area, but their jagged perimeter accounts for more than half of Iceland’s total coastline.

Icelantic Tiger 2615

This stretch of Iceland’s northern coast resembles a tiger’s head complete with stripes of orange, black, and white. The tiger’s mouth is the great Eyjafjorour, a deep fjord that juts into the mainland between steep mountains. The name means “island fjord,” derived from the tiny, tear-shaped Hrisey Island near its mouth. The ice-free port city of Akureyri lies near the fjord’s narrow tip, and is Iceland’s second largest population center after the capital, Reykjavik.

Byrd Glacier Antarctica 2605

Truly a river of ice, Antarctica’s relatively fast-moving Byrd Glacier courses through the Transantarctic Mountains at a rate of 0.8 kilometers (0.5 miles) per year. More than 180 kilometers (112 miles) long, the glacier flows down from the polar plateau (left) to the Ross Ice Shelf (right). Long, sweeping flow lines are crossed in places by much shorter lines, which are deep cracks in the ice called crevasses. The conspicuous red patches indicate areas of exposed rock.

To learn more about this collection go to:  http://eros.usgs.gov/imagegallery/earth-art   You can even purchase printed copies from the USGS store for $25/image.


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