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The first good view of the aftermath of Nepal's deadly earthquake from a satellite reveals that a broad swath of ground near Kathmandu lifted vertically, by about 3 feet, which could explain why damage in the city was so severe. The data also indicate the tallest mountain in the world, Mount Everest, got a wee bit shorter.
Researchers detected the vertical shift in the ground by comparing before-and-after radar images from the satellite using a technique that produces an image called an interferogram. The resulting images have rainbow-colored areas that represent the movement of the ground between the times each radar image was taken. Each colorful fringe on the European Space Agency's Nepal interferogram reflects about 1 inch of vertical movement. The results will be refined in the coming weeks, as scientists further analyize the images and additional data from satellites become available.
The radar images reveal that some of the world's tallest peaks — including Mount Everest — dropped by about 1 inch, according to the nonprofit UNAVCO, a geoscience research consortium.
Well, if you're two inches taller than the tallest climber ever to scale the mountain, then you're still one inch higher on the earth