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February 2 is World Wetlands Day. It was 45 years ago that the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands was adopted as a framework for national action and international cooperation in managing wetlands. Wetlands are land areas that are saturated with water for all or part of the year, and they're important in local ecologies.

Earth observation satellites are key to monitoring and managing wetlands. This is promoted through ESA’s GlobWetland Africa project and the TIGER initiative ‘Looking After Water in Africa’.

Click here to see a collection of satellite images of wetlands. Gorgeous.


Mona Evans
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Strictly speaking, this isn't a beautiful image, but with all the fuss in the USA about the Superbowl, I couldn't resist. On February 7, Expedition 46 Commander Scott Kelly took this photo of Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California. He was flying over it on the International Space Station, and wrote: "Got to see the #SuperBowl in person after all! But at 17,500MPH, it didn't last long."

(Image Credit: NASA)


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Not an abstract painting, but an image from NASA's Aqua satellite. It was taken over the Sea of Okhotsk (northwestern Pacific Ocean) a few days ago. The long parallel bands of cumulus clouds are called cloud streets. They form when there's a sort of temperature sandwich! Cold air is blowing over warmer waters and there's a warm air layer above it. This is known as a temperature inversion. (Famously, Los Angeles can get bad smogs when an inversion happens there.)

Image Credit: NASA image courtesy LANCE/EOSDIS MODIS Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC


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Satellite image of mangrove swamps along the coast of New Caledonia in the southwest Pacific Ocean The heart-shaped formation – known as the ‘Heart of Voh’ is a natural structure caused by changes in vegetation cover. This false-colour image was captured by the Korea Aerospace Research Institute’s Kompsat-2 satellite on 1 April 2009. (Copyright KARI/ESA)


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In this false color image from 20 August, Sentinel-2A brings us to Utah’s Salt Lake City and surroundings.

Salt Lake City is at at 1300 m (around 4000 ft), bordered by the waters of the Great Salt Lake and the peaks of the Wasatch Range, which rise over 2200 m (around 7000 ft) above the Salt Lake valley floor. The lake, partly visible on the left side of the image, is the largest salt-water lake in the Western Hemisphere. The lighter blue areas denote solar evaporation ponds at the edges of the lake, which produce salts and brine.

Although it has been referred to as "America's Dead Sea”, the lake provides habitat for millions of native birds, brine shrimp, shorebirds and waterfowl.


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I wouldn't be able to work out what we're seeing in this picture if it hadn't been labeled. What looks like a strange bit of abstract sculpture is Welsh hills with snow on them. The photo was taken by British astronaut Tim Peake from the International Space Station.


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What is this? It looks to me like the cat has got hold of a ball of yarn and unwound it. But it's actually a picture astronaut Tim Peake took from the International Space Station. It's a glacial river flowing from a Patagonian ice field. Nice, huh? (Credits: ESA/NASA)


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amazing.

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This picture was titled "Earth Art in Northern Australia" and I wondered if it should go into this thread or the Heavenly Art thread.

Have a look at this [url= http://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/styles/full_width_feature/public/thumbnails/image/12909467_553362454846586_5546587330991507170_o.jpg?itok=KRiTHdIZ]great picture of the coast of Northern Australia[/url] and see what you think. NASA astronaut Jeff Williams took it during a flyover of Australia by the International Space Station.


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Where and what is this?

It's Lake Amadeus in Australia's Northern Territory, as seen by The European Space Agency's Sentinel-2A satellite on December 19, 2015.


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