The Aqua MODIS instrument acquired this false-color image of floods in Indochina on October 20, 2002. The floods, shown in dark blue and black, are the result of heavy rains during the monsoon season. Floods are not unusual in this region, but this year’s have been particularly destructive and deadly. The monsoon season lasts from May to November. Flood damage has been particularly bad since 2000, when Cambodia (center) experienced its worst flooding in 70 years.
The Tonle Sap lake in the center of Cambodia shows some flooding, as does the Mekong River flowing south from Laos (top right corner), past the southern edge of the Tonle Sap, and into southern Vietnam (bottom), where it forms the Mekong River Delta. To the north of Cambodia is Thailand. In this image, clouds are light blue and white, water is dark blue and black, and solid land is bright green.