The Low Countries

The Low Countries
  • Credit:

    Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC

“The Low Countries” refers to a region of Europe on the coast of the North Sea that is made from parts of modern-day northwestern France, Luxembourg, Belgium, and the Netherlands. Historically, this region has been much contested by the French, Austrians, and Spanish, and this region saw the birth of the East Indian Company in 1602 and the West Indian Company in 1621. A number of major rivers empty into this area, including the Rhine, the Meuse, and the Yser.

A number of cities are visible as spidery brownish-gray spots on the landscape, including the Netherlands´ Amsterdam (top center, on the southwestern point of the Ijsselmeer Bay) and The Hague (middle left, north of the delta on the North Sea), as well as Belgium´s Brussels (about 150 km south of The Hague) and Charleroi (about 45 km south of Brussels). MODIS also detected a handful of fires in the image (marked in red), including one in Charleroi, one in France east of Reims, and two in Germany northwest of Dusseldorf. Also visible are a number of airplane contrails (streaky icy clouds) over the North Sea. This true-color Terra MODIS image was acquired on April 15, 2003.

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  • Data Date:

    April 15, 2003
  • Visualization Date:

    April 16, 2003
  • Sensor(s):

    Terra - MODIS
NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration