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Raft of rubble

27 August 2019

Captured by the Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission on 21 August 2019, this image features a huge raft of pumice rock drifting in the Pacific Ocean. The pumice is believed to have come from an underwater volcano near Tonga, which erupted on 7 August.

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Fires ravage the Amazon

27 August 2019

Thousands of fires have broken out in the Amazon rainforest. Satellite data show that there are almost four times as many fires this year compared to the same period last year. Apart from Brazil, parts of Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay and Argentina have also been affected.

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Gran Canaria wildfire

21 August 2019

An unprecedented wildfire has ripped through the island of Gran Canaria, one of Spain's Canary Islands off the northwest coast of Africa. The wildfire, which started on Saturday 17 August, has now started to subside after engulfing around 10 000 hectares of land, leading to the evacuation of over 9000 people.

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CryoSat conquers ice on Arctic lakes

05 August 2019

The rapidly changing climate in the Arctic is not only linked to melting glaciers and declining sea ice, but also to thinning ice on lakes. The presence of lake ice can be easily monitored by imaging sensors and standard satellite observations, but now adding to its list of achievements, CryoSat can be used to measure the thickness of lake ice – another indicator of climate change.

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Siberian wildfires

30 July 2019

This Copernicus Sentinel-3 image shows a number of fires, producing plumes of smoke. The smoke has carried air pollution into the Kemerovo, Tomsk, Novosibirsk, and Altai regions.

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Washed up: Sargassum blankets beaches

30 July 2019

Over the last month, massive quantities of the Sargassum seaweed have been washing up on the shores of Mexico, Florida in the US and some Caribbean islands, creating a serious environmental problem and causing havoc for the tourist industry. ESA has been tracking this slimy infestation.

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Too hot to handle

25 July 2019

An extreme heatwave has hit Europe once again this week, following extreme weather in June. High temperatures are expected to peak today, reaching as high as 39—40°C, with Netherlands, Belgium and Germany recording their highest ever temperatures. Paris reached a sweltering 41°C, breaking its previous record in 1947.

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Expanding our knowledge of Arctic Ocean bathymetry

24 July 2019

Our knowledge of the depth and shape of the Arctic Ocean floor – its bathymetry – is insufficient. Owing to year-round sea-ice coverage and the cost of research in this remote region, much of the Arctic Ocean's bathymetry has remained a mystery, until now.

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Second laser boosts Aeolus power

23 July 2019

ESA's Aeolus satellite, which carries the world's first space Doppler wind lidar, has been delivering high-quality global measurements of Earth's wind since it was launched almost a year ago. However, part of the instrument, the laser transmitter, has been slowly losing energy. As a result, ESA decided to switch over to the instrument's second laser – and the mission is now back on top form.

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Monitoring Earth’s skin heat for crops and climate

22 July 2019

A bright red twin-engined aircraft, equipped with ultra-high-resolution thermal imaging technology has been scouring the agricultural heartlands of Europe this summer. It was no search and rescue exercise, but an initial step towards building a proposed new satellite system capable of recording the temperature of Earth's skin in intricate detail.

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