January 27, 2010 - Eastern Australia

Eastern Australia

A few fires dot the landscape in this image of Eastern Australia, captured by the MODIS on the Terra satellite on January 20, 2010. This region of Australia is very varied. Near the top right of the image, the southern end of the coral islands of Australia's Great Barrier Reef create a bright blue-green arc in the Coral Sea. (They can be better seen in this older MODIS image.) Running north-south along the coasts, the mountains of the Great Dividing Range keep much of the moisture away from the continent's arid interior, creating lush forests along the coast. The increased moisture availability is likely the main reason that most of the country's large cities fall along the coasts.

Visible as grayish clusters of pixels in this image (and more easily visible on the higher resolution images) are Brisbane (about halfway down the coast, or about 200 km south of Fraser Island, which almost looks like a peninsula) and Sydney (several hundred kilometers farther south).

Image Facts
Satellite: Terra
Date Acquired: 01/20/2010
Resolutions: 1km ( B), 500m ( B), 250m ( B)
Bands Used: 1,4,3
Image Credit: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC