Bogda Mountains

September 1, 1999
The Turpan Depression, nestled at the foot of China's Bogda Mountains,
is a strange mix of salt lakes and sand dunes, and is one of the few places
in the world that lies below sea level.

Collection: Earth as Art 2

Source: Landsat 7

Order Number: 001

Bolivian Deforestation

Once a vast carpet of healthy vegetation, the Amazon rain forest is changing
rapidly. The image of Bolivia shows dramatic deforestation in the Amazon Basin.
Loggers have cut long paths into the forest, while ranchers have cleared large
blocks for their herds. Fanning out from these clear-cut areas are settlements
built in radial arrangements of fields and farms. Healthy vegetation appears bright
red in this image.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 002

Canyonlands

The Green River and the Colorado River meet within Canyonlands National Park
in Utah. Snow-covered Mount Waas, shown in light blue on the right side of the
image, overlooks the arches, canyons, and bizarre rock formations that prevail
throughout this region.

Collection: Earth As Art 4

Source Satellite: Landsat 8

Order Number: 003

Coahuila Mexico

This desolate landscape is part of the Sierra Madre Oriental mountain range,
on the border between the Coahuila and Nuevo Leon provinces of Mexico

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 004

Colima Volcano

Snow-capped Colima Volcano, the most active volcano in Mexico, rises abruptly
from the surrounding landscape in the state of Jalisco. Colima is actually a melding
of two volcanoes, the older Nevado de Colima to the north and the younger,
historically active Volcan de Colima to the south. Legend has it that gods sit atop the
volcano on thrones of fire and ice.

Collection: Earth As Art 2

Source Satellite: ASTER

Order Number: 005

Contrails

Like scratches on a marble table, airplane contrails cut across the southern California
Mojave Desert. The shadows from the contrails cast dark lines across the ground.
Contrails form when cold, dry air mixes with warmer aircraft exhaust. Mountains and a
few dry lakebeds provide a backdrop to this scene, along with bright green spots of
agriculture along the Colorado River.

Collection: Earth As Art 4

Source Satellite: Landsat 8

Order Number: 006

Cubism -- Landsat Style

Startling red patches sprout from an agricultural landscape that looks almost like a
Cubist painting. The fields in this part of eastern Kazakhstan follow the contours of the
land—long and narrow in mountain valleys, and large and rectangular over the plains.

Collection: Earth As Art 4

Source Satellite: Landsat 8

Order Number: 007

Dasht-e Kevir

The Dasht-e Kevir, or Great Salt Desert, is the largest desert in Iran. It is a primarily
uninhabited wasteland, composed of mud and salt marshes covered with crusts of salt
that protect the meager moisture from completely evaporating.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 008

Earth’s Aquarium

These green and blue swirls in the Bering Sea reveal the bottom of the food chain in
the ocean. Microscopic organisms called phytoplankton, which are important to fish
populations, may be too small to be seen individually, but in vast numbers they are
visible from space. The white clouds in the image look like bubbles in an aquarium.

Collection: Earth As Art 4

Source Satellite: Landsat 8

Order Number: 009

Ganges River Delta

The Ganges River forms an extensive delta where it empties into the Bay of Bengal. The delta
is largely covered with a swamp forest known as the Sunderbans, which is home to the Royal
Bengal Tiger.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 010

Ghadamis River

This scar on an arid landscape is the dry riverbed of the Ghadamis River in the Tinrhert
Hamada Mountains near Ghadamis, Libya.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 011

Great Sandy Scars

In a small corner of the vast Great Sandy Desert in Western Australia, large sand dunes—
the only sand in this desert of scrub and rock—appear as lines stretching from left to right.
The light-colored fan shapes are scars from wildfires.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 012

Guinea-Bissau

Guinea-Bissau is a small country in West Africa. Complex patterns can be seen in the
shallow waters along its coastline, where silt carried by the Geba and other rivers washes
out into the Atlantic Ocean.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 013

Icelandic Tiger

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.

Collection: Earth As Art 3

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 014

Lake Eyre

Do you see a scary face looking back at you? The hollow-appearing eyes, narrow nose, and
slash of a mouth are inundated patches of shallow Lake Eyre (pronounced “air”). Deep in the
desert country of northern South Australia, Lake Eyre is an ephemeral feature of this flat,
parched landscape. When seasonal rains are abundant, water fills the lakebed to some degree.
During the last 150 years, Lake Eyre has filled completely only three times. When brimming, it
is Australia’s largest lake.

Collection: Earth As Art 3

Source Satellite: Landsat 5

Order Number: 015

Lambert Glacier

The Lambert Glacier in Antarctica is the world’s largest glacier. The focal point of this image
is an icefall that feeds into the glacier from the vast ice sheet covering the polar plateau. Ice
flows like water, albeit much more slowly. Cracks can be seen in this icefall as it bends and
twists on its slow-motion descent 1300 feet (400 meters) to the glacier below.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 016

Lena Delta

The Lena River, some 2,800 miles(4,500km) long, is one of the largest rivers in the world.
The Lena Delta Reserve is the most extensive protected wilderness area in Russia. It is
an important refuge and breeding grounds for many species of Siberian wildlife.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 017

Malaspina Glacier

The tongue of the Malaspina Glacier, the largest glacier in Alaska, fills most of this image.
The Malaspina lies west of Yakutat Bay and covers 1,500 sq mi (3,880 sq km).

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 018

Meandering Mississippi

Small, blocky shapes of towns, fields, and pastures surround the graceful swirls and whorls
of the Mississippi River. Countless oxbow lakes and cutoffs accompany the meandering
river south of Memphis, Tennessee, on the border between Arkansas and Mississippi, USA.
The “mighty Mississippi” is the largest river system in North America.

Collection: Earth As Art 3

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 019

Mississippi RIver Delta

Turbid waters spill out into the Gulf of Mexico where their suspended sediment is deposited to
form the Mississippi River Delta. Like the webbing on a duck’s foot, marshes and mudflats
prevail between the shipping channels that have been cut into the delta.

Collection: Earth As Art 2

Source Satellite: ASTER

Order Number: 020

Mount Elgon

Clouds encircle the lofty rim of Africa’s Mount Elgon, a huge, long-extinct volcano on the
border between Uganda and Kenya. The solitary volcano has one of the world’s largest
intact calderas, a cauldron-like central depression. The caldera is about 6.5 kilometers
(4 miles) across and formed following an eruption, when the emptied magma chamber
collapsed under the weight of volcanic rock above it.

Collection: Earth As Art 3

Source Satellite: Landsat 5

Order Number: 021

Nature’s Patterns

The biologically complex conditions of mangroves are shown in dark green along the fingers
of the Ord River in Australia. Yellow, orange, and blue represent the impressive flow patterns
of sediment and nutrients in this tropical estuary. The bright spot at the lower left is an area
of mudflats, which is home to saltwater crocodiles.

Collection: Earth As Art 4

Source Satellite: Landsat 8

Order Number: 022

No Man’s Land

A study in shades of blue and brown is actually one of the harshest landscapes on Earth.
This glimpse of Africa’s Sahara Desert, located near where the borders of Mali, Niger, and
Algeria converge, is truly a no man’s land, a world of sand and rock without roads or
settlements. The horizontal lines across the top half of the image are intrusions of igneous
rock, where magma poked up to the surface from deep underground.

Collection: Earth As Art 3

Source Satellite: Landsat 5

Order Number: 023

Parana River Delta

The Parana River delta is a huge forested marshland about 32km northeast of Buenos Aires,
Argentina. The area is a very popular tour destination. Guided boat tours can be taken into
this vast labyrinth of marsh and trees. The Parana River delta is one of the world’s greatest
bird-watching destinations. This image highlights the striking contrast between dense forest
and wetland marshes, and the deep blue ribbon of the Parana River.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 024

Richat Structure

The so-called Richat Structure is a geological formation in the Maur Adrar Desert in the
African country of Mauritania. Although it resembles an impact crater, the Richat Structure
formed when a volcanic dome hardened and gradually eroded, exposing the onion-like
layers of rock.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 025

Shoemaker Crater

Resembling splotches of yellow and green paint, salt-encrusted seasonal lakes dot the floor
of Western Australia’s Shoemaker impact structure. The structure was formed about 1.7
billion years ago and is currently the oldest known impact site in Australia.

Collection: Earth As Art 2

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 026

Siberian Ribbons

Vivid colors and bizarre shapes come together in an image that could be an imaginative
illustration for a fantasy story. This labyrinth of exotic features is present along the edge of
Russia’s Chaunskaya Bay (vivid blue half circle) in northeastern Siberia. Two major rivers,
the Chaun and Palyavaam, flow into the bay, which in turn opens into the Arctic Ocean.
Ribbon lakes and bogs are present throughout the area, created by depressions left by
receding glaciers.

Collection: Earth As Art 3

Source Satellite: Landsat 5

Order Number: 027

Sierra de Velasco

Shimmering blues and greens accentuate the textures of the Sierra de Velasco Mountains
of northern Argentina. The urban area (pinkish circle) near the lower left part of the mountain
range is La Rioja, the capital of the province of La Rioja. Follow the foothills to the upper right,
where the city of San Fernando del Valle de Catamarca lies near extensive vineyards and fruit-
growing areas (blue blocky shapes).

Collection: Earth As Art 3

Source Satellite: Landsat 5

Order Number: 028

Spilled Paint

Like poster paints run wild, this image reveals an eclectic montage of landscapes in Iran’s
largest desert, the Dasht-e Kavir, or Great Salt Desert. The word kavir is Persian for salt marsh.
The almost uninhabited region covers an area of more than 77,000 square kilometers (29,730
square miles) and is a mix of dry streambeds, desert plateaus, mudflats, and salt marshes.
Extreme heat, dramatic daily temperature swings, and violent storms are the norm in this
inhospitable place.

Collection: Earth As Art 3

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 029

Terkezi Oasis

A series of rocky outcroppings are a prominent feature of this Sahara Desert landscape near
the Terkezi Oasis in the country of Chad.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 030

Tessara Mosaic

The Tietê River snakes across this tessera mosaic of multicolored shapes near Ibitinga,
Brazil. Fields of sugarcane, peanuts, and corn vary in their stages of development. Lavender,
purple, and bright blue indicate actively growing crops. Light yellow or white indicate little or no
vegetation growth. The splotches of dark mustard yellow are urban areas.

Collection: Earth As Art 4

Source Satellite: Landsat 8

Order Number: 031

The Syrian Desert

Between the fertile Euphrates River valley and the cultivated lands of the eastern
Mediterranean coast, the Syrian Desert covers parts of modern Syria, Jordan, Saudi
Arabia, and Iraq.

Collection: Earth As Art 2

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 032

Ugab River

Elusive, but ecologically vital, Namibia’s Ugab River only flows above ground for a few
days each year. The subterranean waters underlying this ephemeral river, however, are
shallow enough in places to fill hollows and sustain a wildlife population that includes the
rare desert elephant.

Collection: Earth As Art 2

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 033

Van Gogh from Space

In the style of Van Gogh’s painting “Starry Night,” massive congregations of greenish
phytoplankton swirl in the dark water around Gotland, a Swedish island in the Baltic Sea.
Phytoplankton are microscopic marine plants that form the first link in nearly all ocean
food chains. Population explosions, or blooms, of phytoplankton, like the one shown here,
occur when deep currents bring nutrients up to sunlit surface waters, fueling the growth and
reproduction of these tiny plants.

Collection: Earth As Art 3

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 034

Von Karman Vortices

As air flows over and around objects in its path, spiraling eddies, known as Von Karman
vortices, may form. The vortices in this image were created when prevailing winds
sweeping east across the northern Pacific Ocean encountered Alaska’s Aleutian Islands.

Collection: Earth As Art 2

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 035

West Fjords

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.

Collection: Earth As Art

Source Satellite: Landsat 7

Order Number: 036

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