Science and Exploration

Baltic Sea Blooms As Seen From Orbit

By Keith Cowing
February 22, 2018
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Baltic Sea Blooms As Seen From Orbit
Baltic Sea Blooms

Cyanobacteria are an ancient type of marine bacteria that, like other phytoplankton, capture and store solar energy through photosynthesis.
Some are toxic to humans and animals. Moreover, large blooms can cause an oxygen-depleted dead zone where other organisms cannot survive.

On August 11, 2015, the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8 captured this false-color view of what appears to be a large bloom of cyanobacteria swirling in the Baltic Sea. The image was composed from bands 4 (640-670 nanometers), 3 (530-590 nanometers), and 2 (450-510 nanometers) for the red, green, and blue components of the image, respectively. Band 8 (500-680 nanometers) was used to sharpen the image.

Larger image

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