The Quebec government recently announced the opening of the new Pingualuit National Park, an 1,100 km2 park around the Pinqualuit, or New Quebec, impact crater.


Pinqualuit Crater, Quebec

The 3.5 km crater is nearly a perfect circle and is a relatively recent 1.4 million years old.

A few months back, the NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter returned an amazing picture of a seemingly bottomless pit about 100 meters in diameter. The photo shows no evidence of a wall, and there is speculation that it may be an entrance to an underground cavern.

Mars Cavern

Strange Surface Feature on Mars

A subsequent photo has shown a vertical wall along one side, so a minimum depth can be established, but there is still no way to tell how deep it actually is. Several other similar holes have been found, but the one above is the most striking because of its symmetry.

Here is something more approachable.


“Rowan Leaves and Hole” by Andy Goldsworthy

This is a bit more down to Earth and of a human scale…

» Posted: Monday, December 3, 2007 | Comments (0) | Permanent Link


A nice—and again disheartening—map of Antarctica that complements the NASA Earth Observatory’s recent ice-melt map of Greenland. The maps look similar but the map below shows a different dataset using a similar color scheme:


20-Year Temperature Trend in Antarctica

Also, don’t miss the recently produced online maps from the US Geological Survey: the Landsat Images of Antarctica (LIMA), produced as part of the International Polar Year 2007-2008.


Landstat Images of Antarctica

The interface could use a bit of work. I imagine that these will eventually be integrated into the Google Earth products.

» Posted: Saturday, December 1, 2007 | Comments (0) | Permanent Link