NASA Releases Amazing 3D Images Of Planet Earth

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Just when we thought that we have seen it all from Google Earth, the folks at NASA have surprised us again, by releasing an amazing new 3-D map that clearly highlights the elevation of 99% of the Earth's surface. The map covers every part of the Earth, except for the North and South Pole.

Dubbed the Global Digital Elevation Model, the map was created using nearly 1.3 trillion images captured by ASTER (Advanced Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer), one of five Earth observing instruments orbiting the Earth aboard NASA's Terra Satellite since 1999. Equipped with state-of-the art technology, ASTER constantly images the Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet.

Besides the maps, NASA also released these stunning close-up pictures of areas like Utah's Monument Valley and the famous Palm Islands of Dubai. ASTER has also managed to capture vivid images of natural disasters like fires and floods in various parts of the world, as they were happening.

NASA believes that the detailed map and close-up terrain pictures will be of great use to many people ranging from engineers to city planners and even environmentalists. For more amazing pictures check out asterweb.jpl.nasa.gov/gallerymap. The video below was taken by Aster, whilst cruising over California.

Sources: Gizmondo.com, gcn.com,NASA

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