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The Topography of France
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The Topography of France

July 26, 2003
This image of France was generated with data from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM). For this broad view the resolution of the data was reduced to 6 arcseconds (about 185 meters north-south and 127 meters east-west), resampled to a Mercator projection, and the French border outlined. Even at this decreased resolution the variety of landforms comprising the country is readily apparent.

The upper central part of this scene is dominated by the Paris Basin, which consists of a layered sequence of sedimentary rocks. Fertile soils over much of the area make good agricultural land. The Normandie coast to the upper left is characterized by high, chalk cliffs, while the Brittany coast (the peninsula to the left) is highly indented where deep valleys were drowned by the sea, and the Biscay coast to the southwest is marked by flat, sandy beaches.



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