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The Maldives
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The Maldives

February 15, 2009
Appearing at first glance to be more like the dotted-outlines of islands than actual islands, the island nation of the Maldives lie in the Indian Ocean, southwest of India. It is worth examining the higher resolution images, for a better look at the ghostly, luminous forms of the coral atolls that are the Maldives. There are 26 atolls made up of nearly 1200 individual islets, over 200 of which are inhabited.

The Maldives are the lowest country in the world, with the maximum natural ground level only being 2.3 meters (7.5 feet). Because of being so low-lying, the Maldives were greatly affected by the 2004 tsunami. There is also concern about how rising ocean levels might affect the islands.

This image was captured by the MODIS on the Terra satellite on February 12, 2009.