Skip to main content

New satellite images shed light on the 7.8 magnitude Nepal earthquake

new satellite images shed light on the 7 8 magnitude nepal earthquake earthquakeheader
NASA/Google Earth Blog
The world was shocked when a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal on April 25, and now, in the aftermath, researchers are moving forward to understand the inner workings of the disaster.

Scientists from NASA, the Advanced Rapid Imaging and Analysis project and the California Institute of Technology have analyzed interferometric synthetic aperture radar images of the earthquake location. Additionally, a new downloadable KMZ file is available for the public to view the region via Google Earth, according to GEarthBlog.com.

The map shows that the ground moved upward with the maximum movement point located slightly north of Kathmandu. The imagery is now available for free to emergency responders under a public license, courtesy of DigitalGlobe. Maps that depict damaged areas are also being provided to encourage volunteers to visit specific locations where help is needed.

The radar images analyzed by the scientists came from the PALSAR-2 instrument on the ALOS-2 satellite. The satellite, which is operated by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, has the ability to calculate the deformation of the Earth’s surface from space.

Images show that the ground moved up by 4.6 feet around Kathmandu. This earthquake was the largest since the 1934 Nepal quake that had a magnitude of 8.0.

Google Earth is not the search engine giant’s only tool playing a role in the Nepal earthquake recovery efforts. Recently, Google announced that it would be opening its Person Finder tool to support rescue efforts, according to The Verge. The Person Finder tool is Google’s missing persons database, and it is open source. It was notably used after the earthquake that hit Haiti in 2010.

In addition to providing valuable geologic information, Google Earth has provided more somber images in recent weeks as well. Satellite pictures from Google Earth that were released on April 28 showed sprawling tent cities across Kathmandu, according to The Huffington Post.

Editors' Recommendations

Krystle Vermes
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Krystle Vermes is a professional writer, blogger and podcaster with a background in both online and print journalism. Her…
4 CPUs you should buy instead of the Ryzen 7 7800X3D
AMD Ryzen 7 7800X3D sitting on a motherboard.

The Ryzen 7 7800X3D is one of the best gaming processors you can buy, and it's easy to see why. It's easily the fastest gaming CPU on the market, it's reasonably priced, and it's available on a platform that AMD says it will support for several years. But it's not the right chip for everyone.

Although the Ryzen 7 7800X3D ticks all the right boxes, there are several alternatives available. Some are cheaper while still offering great performance, while others are more powerful in applications outside of gaming. The Ryzen 7 7800X3D is a great CPU, but if you want to do a little more shopping, these are the other processors you should consider.
AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D

Read more
Even the new mid-tier Snapdragon X Plus beats Apple’s M3
A photo of the Snapdragon X Plus CPU in the die

You might have already heard of the Snapdragon X Elite, the upcoming chips from Qualcomm that everyone's excited about. They're not out yet, but Qualcomm is already announcing another configuration to live alongside it: the Snapdragon X Plus.

The Snapdragon X Plus is pretty similar to the flagship Snapdragon X Elite in terms of everyday performance but, as a new chip tier, aims to bring AI capabilities to a wider portfolio of ARM-powered laptops. To be clear, though, this one is a step down from the flagship Snapdragon X Elite, in the same way that an Intel Core Ultra 7 is a step down from Core Ultra 9.

Read more
Gigabyte just confirmed AMD’s Ryzen 9000 CPUs
Pads on the AMD Ryzen 7 7800X3D.

Gigabyte spoiled AMD's surprise a bit by confirming the company's next-gen CPUs. In a press release announcing a new BIOS for X670, B650, and A620 motherboards, Gigabyte not only confirmed that support has been added for next-gen AMD CPUs, but specifically referred to them as "AMD Ryzen 9000 series processors."

We've already seen MSI and Asus add support for next-gen AMD CPUs through BIOS updates, but neither of them called the CPUs Ryzen 9000. They didn't put out a dedicated press release for the updates, either. It should go without saying, but we don't often see a press release for new BIOS versions, suggesting Gigabyte wanted to make a splash with its support.

Read more