Coloured radar image of the Atlas mountains

Coloured radar image of the Atlas mountains

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Caption: Atlas mountains. Coloured satellite radar image of the Atlas mountains in eastern Morocco. North is towards top right. In this image outcrops of rock are bright, and the sandy areas between them are dark. The mountains are formed by sedimentary rock that has been folded into parallel ridges as Africa moves northwards into Europe through plate tectonics. These parallel ridges have been disrupted due to fault movement and earthquakes. The areas between the rock outcrops serve as channels for seasonal streams in this arid region. This image was taken by the American space shuttle Endeavour's SIR-C/X-SAR instrument and covers an area of 44x34 kilometres; it was taken in April.

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Keywords: atlas, atlas mountains, desert, environment, folded mountains, from space, geography, morocco, mountain

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