Earth's topography

Earth's topography

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Credit: NOAA/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Global topography. Topographical map of the Earth, centred on 45 degrees North, 90 degrees West. The seas and oceans are colour-coded by depth. Turquoise regions descend to around 150 metres, and show the continental shelf. This drops off abruptly at the shelf break, where the continental slope descends to the deep ocean floor (seen as increasingly dark shades of blue). The mid- Atlantic Ridge runs north-south down the length of the Atlantic Ocean at centre right. Land colours are based on MODIS true-colour data from the Terra satellite in 2004. Highlands are seen as darker regions, notably the Rocky Mountains and Pacific Coast Ranges of western North America.

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