Pakistan's 'Earthquake Island' Appears in Satellite Imagery
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Pakistani residents gather on an island that appeared about 300 feet off the coastline of Gwadar after a 7.7 magnitude earthquake that killed hundreds on Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2013. NASA recently released images of the geologic phenomenon that has fascinated locals and experts.
Behram Baloch/AFP/Getty Images
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Scientists say tests show the small island of mud and rock emits methane gas. The water depth around it is roughly 50 to 65 feet, according to marine geologist Asif Inam of Pakistan’s National Institute of Oceanography.
National Institute of Oceanography/NASA
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This image acquired by the Operational Land Imager on the Landsat 8 satellite shows the coast of Gwadar, Pakistan, left, on April 17, 2013.
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(Left) The new island, which is 250 to 300 feet across and stands 60 to 70 feet above the water line, sits roughly a half mile offshore in the Arabian Sea.
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The image was captured by the Advanced Land Imager on NASA’s Earth Observing-1 satellite on Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013.
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The quake struck Baluchistan's remote Awaran district, including Gwadar, killing at least 271 people and displacing hundreds of thousands.
Government of Gwadar/AP
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Experts say the island is likely a “mud volcano" and probably won't last long.