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Coccoliths in the Celtic Sea
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Coccoliths in the Celtic Sea

April 2, 2003
As the basis of the marine foodchain, phytoplankton are important indicators of change in the oceans. These marine flora also extract carbon dioxide from the atmosphere for use in photosynthesis, and play an important role in global climate. Phytoplankton blooms that occur near the surface are readily visible from space, enabling a global estimation of the presence of chlorophyll and other pigments. This image is a natural-color view of the Celtic Sea and English Channel regions, and was acquired by the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer's nadir (vertical-viewing) camera on June 4, 2001 during Terra orbit 7778. It represents an area of 380 kilometers x 445 kilometers, and includes portions of southwestern England and northwestern France.


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