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In Photos: South Korea from Above


The Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium

The Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium

Credit: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg via Getty

The location for the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, the Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium, glistens as the sun rises over South Korea on Jan. 24, 2018. Here’s a look at the East Asian nation, located on the southern half of the Korean peninsula, as the Olympic Games kick off.

South Korea

South Korea

Credit: Planet Observer/UIG/REX/Shutterstock

Using data from Landsat-5 and Landsat-7 satellites, the country of South Korea is highlighted in this image.

The Alpensia Sliding Center

The Alpensia Sliding Center

Credit: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg via Getty

The site where luge, bobsleigh and skeleton races will take place — the Alpensia Sliding Center — makes its home in Gangwon, South Korea.

Snow in South Korea

Snow in South Korea

Credit: Jeff Schmaltz/LANCE/EOSDIS Rapid Response/NASA

Just south of the mainland, Jeju Island got smacked with nearly 5 inches (12 centimeters) of snow on Jan. 25, 2016, the most snow measured there since 1984. The accumulation resulted in the closing of the island’s airport, stranding over 80,000 travelers.

Unexpected Snow in South Korea

Unexpected Snow in South Korea

Credit: Jeff Schmaltz/MODIS Land Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC

Snowfall on March 6, 2004, crippled the central provinces of South Korea with closed roads across the area, including in the capital Seoul. During this storm, more than 25 inches fell in a two-day period, leaving this blanket of snow across the region.

Cheju Island

Cheju Island

Credit: Robert Simmon/USGS/NASA

The oval-shaped volcanoic landmass, known as Cheju Island, sits off the southern tip of the Korean Peninsula. The island boasts tourist attractions and a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage site.

Changes afoot

Changes afoot

Credit: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg via Getty

Moon Jae-in, South Korea’s new president, supports a shift in the nations’ energy approach, supporting policies that bolster natural gas and renewable energies, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. This image shows a residential area in the Gujwa-eup district of Jeju.

The DMZ

The DMZ

Credit: Jesse Allen/Earth Observatory Goddard Space Flight Center/NASA

Using data from four separate periods stretching from 1989 to 1991, taken by the Landsat-4 and Landsat-5 satellites, scientists created this view of the central section of the Korean Peninsula. The natural-color mosaic highlights he Demilitarized Zone that stretches in a green swath across the image. Sediment creates rich patterns at the mouth of the Han River.

Art at the Peace Dam

Art at the Peace Dam

Credit: Ed Jones/AFP/Getty

A May 21, 2017 image reveals a unique art piece at the Peace dam north of Hwacheon. Colorfully painted Korean war-era tanks surround a globe carrying the slogan “Peace All Around the World.” The ‘Peace Dam’ was constructed between 1987 and 2005 in preparation for accidental or intentional flooding from North Korea’s Imnam Dam.

North of the Han

North of the Han

Credit: Ed Jones/AFP/Getty

On the right, the Han River splits the South Korean capital city of Seoul.

A long history

A long history

Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

Seoul has been the capital of Korea for over 600 years. It became the capital of South Korea following its independence in 1949. Originally known as Hanyang, the city is a thoroughly modern megacity, boasting a population of more than 10 million people.

South Korea’s land reclamation project

South Korea's land reclamation project

Credit: NASA/GSFC/MITI/ERSDAC/JAROS

This image reveals, captured by ASTER (a high-resolution imaging instrument) on NASA’s Terra satellite, the beginning stages of a land reclamation project on the South Korean coast of the Yellow Sea. A 20-mile-long (33 kilometers) sea wall, completed in April 2006, uncovered submerged tidal flats.

Big City

Big City

The Seoul metropolitan area, about 30 miles south of North Korea and around 200 miles south of China, houses almost 20 million people — almost half the population of South Korea.

Renewable energies

Renewable energies

Credit: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg via Getty

In May of 2015, solar panels at the Geogeum Solar Park Co. solar plant soak up the sun on Geogeum Island. This image shows a portion of what is expected to exceed global installations of over 60 gigawatts for 2015.

Metro area

Metro area

Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

The fifth largest urban area in South Korea, 1.4 million people call Kwangju home. This city is at the base of Mudeungsan mountain with plains to the west.

Busy ports

Busy ports

Credit: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg via Getty

At the port of Pyeongtaek, Kia Motors Corp. vehicles await export. The Eukor Car Carriers Inc. roll-on/roll-off vehicles carrier cargo ship is docked, ready for loading.

A port city

A port city

Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

Pohang, a port city on the eastern coastline of South Korea, is divided by the Hyeongsan River with residential and commercial development to the west, depicted by small gray- and white-roofed buildings and a dense road network.

Harvest time

Harvest time

Credit: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg via Getty

On Dec. 28, 2015, a barge and ship prepare to harvest oysters off the coast near Tongyeong, South Korea.

Sea fields

Sea fields

Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

Along the south coast of South Korea, fields of seaweed grow along ropes connected to buoys.

Refugee settlement

Refugee settlement

Credit: Ed Jones/AFP/Getty

During the 1950-53 Korean War, North Korean refugees created “Abai village,” a settlement in the northeast port city of Sokcho. Some North Koreans still live there today.

Obvious importance

Obvious importance

Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

A nighttime view of the Korean Peninsula from the International Space Station reveals economic importance of cities i the country.

Evidence of life

Evidence of life

Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

The Korean Peninsula offers a stark comparison. South Korea glows with lights in this nighttime image while North Korea has little evidence of electricity.

Environmental accident

Environmental accident

Off the South Korean coast, crude oil from the Hebei Spirit pollutes the sea, in this Dec. 11, 2007.



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