NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Earth's climatic regions. Coloured satellite radar image in Mercator projection of the Earth, showing the effect of climate on the nature of the land's surface. The glacial ice sheets of the Arctic and Antarctic regions are the brightest areas. Equat- orial rainforests in South America, Africa and southeast Asia appear blue. Very dry, sandy deserts appear black, the largest such areas being the Gobi desert in Asia, the Sahara in Africa and the Empty Quarter in Saudi Arabia. Images like this can be used to check for desertification due to global warming. Image taken by the American NASA Scatterometer (NSCAT) aboard the Japanese Advanced Earth Observation Satellite (ADEOS).
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