Space Pictures This Week: Mercury’s Marks, Miracle Delta
By Space Coast Daily // June 22, 2013
Wind Shadow: Image courtesy Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS/NASA
Thanks to a vantage point 450 miles (725 kilometers) above the Earth, strange patterns caused by strong winds on the ocean’s surface become visible in the play of sunlight on the water.
The rocky, volcanic islands redirect the strong northwest winds that come up against the coast, forming a wind shadow on the southwest side of the islands. This shadow creates distinct helical cloud trails and alternately smooth and choppy waters, which change how light is reflected.
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