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Southwest Tanzania
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Southwest Tanzania

January 17, 2006
This ASAR WSM image is the first transmitted via the satellite ARTEMIS. The acquisition shows an area centered over the southwest of Tanzania. In the bottom half section of the image, parts of lakes are clearly visible. Lakes Rukwa (left hand side) and Malawi (bottom part) lie in the Great Rift Valley, a tremendous geological fault system extending from Middle East to Mozambique and crossing Tanzania from Northeast to southwest. The Ruaha National park, located on the far north side of the Lake Malawi, is one of Tanzania's least accessible parks, remaining almost totally untouched and preserving a unique wildlife. On the Southside of Ruaha National Park are located the Usangu flats which are a vast alluvial wetlands. The variation in grey tone within the Usangu wetlands indicates a change in soil moisture. As can be seen over the lakes, water is like a mirror for signal radar, reflecting specularly away from the antenna the energy backscattered. As a result, wet areas generate dark grey tones within the image.

Technical Information:
  • Satellite: Envisat
  • Instrument: ASAR
  • Acquisition: 12-Mar-2003
  • Orbit nr: 05385
  • Center coordinates: lat. -8.41, lon. 34.50


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