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Earthquake damage seen from space

By: Katherine Butler on Sept. 23, 2012, 4:09 p.m.
Christchurch New Zealand earthquake

Photo: NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team

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Christchurch, New Zealand

This image from Feb. 23, 2011 shows the second-largest city in New Zealand just one day after a 6.3-magnitude earthquake. In the city of 377,000, there were 181 deaths, according to the official New Zealand Police report, with damages totaling around $30 billion in New Zealand dollars.


This image was taken by the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) instrument on NASA's Terra spacecraft. It shows a perspective view of Christchurch and the Banks Peninsula at the upper right, the location of the earthquake’s epicenter and site of two overlapping volcanoes.