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Mississippi flooding captured by NASA satellites

Date:
May 11, 2011
Source:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
Summary:
The Mississippi River reached nearly 48 feet in Memphis, Tenn., on May 10, according to the U.S. National Weather Service. It was the highest water level for Memphis since 1937.

Top: Mississippi floodwaters inundate Memphis, Tenn., on May 10 as seen by the Landsat 5 satellite (left image). The right image shows the same view from April 21, 2010. Bottom: Flooding in Arkansas as seen on May 10 by NASA's Aqua satellite (left image). The right image shows the same view from April 29, 2011.
Credit: Top: NASA Earth Observatory/United States Geological Survey; Bottom: NASA Goddard/MODIS Rapid Response Team

The Mississippi River reached nearly 48 feet in Memphis, Tenn., on May 10, according to the U.S. National Weather Service. It was the highest water level for Memphis since 1937.

Several of NASA's fleet of Earth-observing satellites have been gathering data on the current Mississippi flooding as well as floods worldwide. The progress of the floodwaters can be tracked in a series of satellite images posted on the NASA Earth Observatory website.

The Landsat 5 Thematic Mapper captured an image on May 10 showing in natural color the area around Memphis as it would look to the human eye. This month muddy water has pushed over the Mississippi's banks both east and west of the normal river channel. Flood waters span the distance between Memphis and West Memphis. Another Landsat 5 image from April 21, 2010 (bottom), shows non-flooded conditions.

A broader view of the flooding in Arkansas is shown in a pair of images taken by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA's Aqua over the past two weeks. The top image from May 10 and the bottom image on April 29 use a combination of infrared and visible light to increase the contrast between water and land. Water varies in color from electric blue to navy. Clouds (visible in the May image) are pale blue-green. Vegetation is green, and soil is brown. Both images show severe flooding along the Mississippi River.

For more NASA imagery on the current Mississippi flooding, visit: http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/NaturalHazards/event.php?id=49528


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. "Mississippi flooding captured by NASA satellites." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 May 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110511182011.htm>.
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. (2011, May 11). Mississippi flooding captured by NASA satellites. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110511182011.htm
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. "Mississippi flooding captured by NASA satellites." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110511182011.htm (accessed April 19, 2014).

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