Archive for the ‘EO’s Satellite Puzzler’ Category

October Puzzler Answer: Lluta River

November 1st, 2013 by Adam Voiland

 

Llhuta
Congratulations to Jaimen W. for solving the October Puzzler the fastest.  The answer is Chile’s Lluta River. See the Image of the Day that we published on November 1, 2013, for details about the area. Phil Echelman was right on Jaimen’s heels, responding with the correct answer just two minutes after Jaimen. Congratulations also to Javier Canete, Alan W, and Juan Pablo Joui for offering interesting information about the area.

The unique perspectiveand beautyof satellite imagery never ceases to fascinate me. In this case, the satellite perspective of Lluta River does a remarkable job of illustrating how constricted and precious water and farmland is in this extremely arid region. But distance also blurs detail. I was curious about what this river valley looked like from the ground, so I did some searching on Panoramio and Flickr.  I’ve included two of the many shots I came across at the top and bottom of this post. The panorama at the top was taken by Gustavo Canales;  Julie Laurent took the photograph at the bottom.

Lluta_ali_2012201

While researching the Lluta, I  ended up in touch with Pablo Pastén González, an engineer at Northwestern University and the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. His group has been studying the Lluta since 2007.  Via email, he shared some thoughts about what he finds most notable about the river.

“The interplay between the Atacama aridity, the presence of ancestral communities, high arsenic and boron concentrations in the fluvial network deriving from the complex interaction of hydrodynamic and biogeochemical factors, with natural (geothermal) and anthropogenic (legacy mining) sources upstream from the place of your picture makes it a prime spot for research in the geosciences.  At the same time, the presence of ancestral cultures, the proximity of the border with Perú, and the push from the Chilean government to increase economic activity (mining, agriculture, tourism) makes it a fascinating place where science meets economic development and policy.

For example, not far upstream from the place of your picture, the Chilean government is planning to build the Chironta dam, a reservoir that seeks water storage for irrigation and flood control during the “Bolivian winter,” the wet season between December and March.  What’s puzzling is that the Lluta brings high concentrations of arsenic-loaded particles that will probably make the sediments of this dam into an arsenic reservoir. We expect that the dam will work as a giant settling basin that will decrease the concentration of total arsenic flowing downstream (i.e. less arsenic will flow through the reach in your picture), but an arsenic time bomb that could be set off by the wrong biogeochemical/hydraulic conditions in the dam.”

llhuta2

October Puzzler

October 28th, 2013 by Adam Voiland

puzzler_oct_2013-

Each month, Earth Observatory offers up a puzzling satellite image here on Earth Matters. The October 2013 puzzler is above. Your challenge is to use the comments section to tell us what part of the world we are looking at, when the image was acquired, and why the scene is interesting.

How to answer. Your answer can be a few words or several paragraphs. (Try to keep it shorter than 300 words). You might simply tell us what part of the world an image shows. Or you can dig deeper and explain what satellite and instrument produced the image, what spectral bands were used to create it, or what is compelling about some obscure speck in the far corner of an image. If you think something is interesting or noteworthy, tell us about it.

The prize. We can’t offer prize money for being the first to respond or for digging up the most interesting kernels of information. But, we can promise you credit and glory (well, maybe just credit). Roughly one week after a puzzler image appears on this blog, we will post an annotated and captioned version as our Image of the Day. In the credits, we’ll acknowledge the person who was first to correctly ID the image. We’ll also recognize people who offer the most interesting tidbits of information. Please include your preferred name or alias with your comment. If you work for an institution that you want us to recognize, please mention that as well.

Recent winners. If you’ve won the puzzler in the last few months, please sit on your hands for at least a few days to give others a chance to play.

Releasing Comments. Savvy readers have solved a number of earlier puzzlers after only a few minutes or hours. To give more people a chance to play, we’re going to wait between 24-48 hours before posting the answers we’ve received in the comment thread this time.

 

September Puzzler Answer: Chara Sands

September 20th, 2013 by Adam Voiland

Congratulations to Felix Bossert for being the quickest to solve the September puzzler. The answer is the Chara Sands.  See the Image of the Day that published on September 21, 2013, for a second image and details about the area. Also congratulations to Robert Emberson for providing interesting details about the geologic history of the dunes.

It only took Bossert a few hours to get the answerimpressive because we hadn’t even promoted the puzzler through our email newsletter, Facebook page, or Twitter feed. I can’t say I’m surprised because Felix is a veteran of the geology puzzler Where on Google Earth (WOGE).  Give WOGE a try, but make sure know the rules and be prepared to host the next WOGE if you win.)

charasands_oli_2013192

 

September Puzzler

September 16th, 2013 by Adam Voiland

puzzler_sep_2013
Each month, Earth Observatory offers up a puzzling satellite image here on Earth Matters. The September 2013 puzzler is above. Your challenge is to use the comments section to tell us what part of the world we are looking at, when the image was acquired, and why the scene is interesting.

How to answer. Your answer can be a few words or several paragraphs. (Try to keep it shorter than 300 words). You might simply tell us what part of the world an image shows. Or you can dig deeper and explain what satellite and instrument produced the image, what spectral bands were used to create it, or what is compelling about some obscure speck in the far corner of an image. If you think something is interesting or noteworthy, tell us about it.

The prize. We can’t offer prize money for being the first to respond or for digging up the most interesting kernels of information. But, we can promise you credit and glory (well, maybe just credit). Roughly one week after a puzzler image appears on this blog, we will post an annotated and captioned version as our Image of the Day. In the credits, we’ll acknowledge the person who was first to correctly ID the image. We’ll also recognize people who offer the most interesting tidbits of information. Please include your preferred name or alias with your comment. If you work for an institution that you want us to recognize, please mention that as well.

Recent winners. If you’ve won the puzzler in the last few months, please sit on your hands for at least a few days to give others a chance to play.

August Puzzler Answer

August 23rd, 2013 by Adam Voiland

beaverisland_oli_2013144

widebeaverislandarchipelago_oli_2013144

A special congratulations to Cyndy Hunting for being our first reader to work out that the August puzzler showed Garden and Hog islands in northern Lake Michigan. After 19 puzzlers, this was the first time the correct answer came in as a comment on our Facebook page. Just a few hours after Cyndy nailed the location on Facebook, CEM posted the correct answer on our Earth Matters blog.

Meantime, Shawn O and Daniel Bailey were putting forward thoughtful theories about the geological processes that shaped the islands rather than simply worrying about the location. As they suggested, a combination of glacial scouring and rising water levels likely formed the distinctive ridges while the Laurentide ice sheet was retreating and forming Lake Michigan. You can read our Image of the Day caption here.  And check out this interesting effort to make detailed maps of the lake floor of an area near Hog Island.

August Puzzler

August 19th, 2013 by Adam Voiland

August2013_puzzler

Each month, Earth Observatory offers up a puzzling satellite image here on Earth Matters. The nineteenth puzzler is above. Your challenge is to use the comments section to tell us what part of the world we are looking at, when the image was acquired, and why the scene is interesting.

How to answer. Your answer can be a few words or several paragraphs. (Try to keep it shorter than 300 words). You might simply tell us what part of the world an image shows. Or you can dig deeper and explain what satellite and instrument produced the image, what spectral bands were used to create it, or what is compelling about some obscure speck in the far corner of an image. If you think something is interesting or noteworthy, tell us about it.

The prize. We can’t offer prize money for being the first to respond or for digging up the most interesting kernels of information. But, we can promise you credit and glory (well, maybe just credit). Roughly one week after a puzzler image appears on this blog, we will post an annotated and captioned version as our Image of the Day. In the credits, we’ll acknowledge the person who was first to correctly ID the image. We’ll also recognize people who offer the most interesting tidbits of information. Please include your preferred name or alias with your comment. If you work for an institution that you want us to recognize, please mention that as well.

Recent winners. If you’ve won the puzzler in the last few months, please sit on your hands for at least a few days to give others a chance to play.

July Puzzler

July 15th, 2013 by Holli Riebeek

eopuzzler_18

Each month, Earth Observatory offers up a puzzling satellite image here on Earth Matters. The eighteenth puzzler is above. Your challenge is to use the comments section to tell us what part of the world we are looking at, when the image was acquired, and why the scene is interesting.

How to answer. Your answer can be a few words or several paragraphs. (Try to keep it shorter than 300 words). You might simply tell us what part of the world an image shows. Or you can dig deeper and explain what satellite and instrument produced the image, what spectral bands were used to create it, or what is compelling about some obscure speck in the far corner of an image. If you think something is interesting or noteworthy, tell us about it.

The prize. We can’t offer prize money for being the first to respond or for digging up the most interesting kernels of information. But, we can promise you credit and glory (well, maybe just credit). Roughly one week after a puzzler image appears on this blog, we will post an annotated and captioned version as our Image of the Day. In the credits, we’ll acknowledge the person who was first to correctly ID the image. We’ll also recognize people who offer the most interesting tidbits of information. Please include your preferred name or alias with your comment. If you work for an institution that you want us to recognize, please mention that as well.

Recent winners. If you’ve won the puzzler in the last few months, please sit on your hands for at least a few days to give others a chance to play.

June Puzzler

June 17th, 2013 by Adam Voiland

eopuzzler_17

Each month, Earth Observatory offers up a puzzling satellite image here on Earth Matters. The seventeenth puzzler is above. Your challenge is to use the comments section to tell us what part of the world we are looking at, when the image was acquired, and why the scene is interesting.

How to answer. Your answer can be a few words or several paragraphs. (Try to keep it shorter than 300 words). You might simply tell us what part of the world an image shows. Or you can dig deeper and explain what satellite and instrument produced the image, what spectral bands were used to create it, or what is compelling about some obscure speck in the far corner of an image. If you think something is interesting or noteworthy, tell us about it.

The prize. We can’t offer prize money for being the first to respond or for digging up the most interesting kernels of information. But, we can promise you credit and glory (well, maybe just credit). Roughly one week after a puzzler image appears on this blog, we will post an annotated and captioned version as our Image of the Day. In the credits, we’ll acknowledge the person who was first to correctly ID the image. We’ll also recognize people who offer the most interesting tidbits of information. Please include your preferred name or alias with your comment. If you work for an institution that you want us to recognize, please mention that as well.

Recent winners. If you’ve won the puzzler in the last few months, please sit on your hands for at least a few days to give others a chance to play.

May Puzzler

May 21st, 2013 by Adam Voiland

IDL TIFF file
Each month, Earth Observatory offers up a puzzling satellite image here on Earth Matters. The sixteenth puzzler is above. Your challenge is to use the comments section to tell us what part of the world we are looking at, when the image was acquired, and why the scene is interesting. For instance, what do you think the horizontal line is on the upper part of the image? The tan areas below? The blue-black blotches on the right?

How to answer. Your answer can be a few words or several paragraphs. (Try to keep it shorter than 300 words). You might simply tell us what part of the world an image shows. Or you can dig deeper and explain what satellite and instrument produced the image, what spectral bands were used to create it, or what is compelling about some obscure speck in the far corner of an image. If you think something is interesting or noteworthy, tell us about it.

The prize. We can’t offer prize money for being the first to respond or for digging up the most interesting kernels of information. But, we can promise you credit and glory (well, maybe just credit). Roughly one week after a puzzler image appears on this blog, we will post an annotated and captioned version as our Image of the Day. In the credits, we’ll acknowledge the person who was first to correctly ID the image. We’ll also recognize people who offer the most interesting tidbits of information. Please include your preferred name or alias with your comment. If you work for an institution that you want us to recognize, please mention that as well.

Recent winners. If you’ve won the puzzler in the last few months, please sit on your hands for at least a few days to give others a chance to play.

Answers to Earth Week Puzzlers

April 29th, 2013 by Adam Voiland

Thanks to everybody who offered answers to our five puzzlers last week. Congratulations to Christina Stiefel for solving Puzzler #5, Alan Wessman for solving Puzzler #3, and Angie Connelly for solving Puzzler #2! Honorable mention to Marcus Scherer for nearly solving Puzzler #1.

IDL TIFF file

IDL TIFF file

IDL TIFF file

IDL TIFF file

IDL TIFF file