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Canary Islands
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Canary Islands

January 20, 2006
This ASAR wide-swath image displays three of the Canary Islands, off the African coast in the Atlantic Ocean. From left to right are the islands of Gomera, Tenerife and Gran Canaria. The image also demonstrates many of the features associated with the imprint of atmospheric boundary layer effects on the ocean surface. North of the islands there are several cellular structures with half-moon shaped radar cross-section patterns. These are associated with convective clouds and precipitation, which contrast sharply with the overall background radar cross-section. South of the islands, dark low-backscatter features are seen extending southward. These reveal the lee effect, whereby the Canary Island mountains interrupt northerly winds, thus creating an area of calm, sheltered water.

Technical Information:
  • Satellite: Envisat
  • Instrument: ASAR
  • Acquisition: 16-Mar-2002
  • Orbit nr: 00220
  • Center coordinates: lat. 28.25, lon. -16.12


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