Select your localized edition:

Close ×

More Ways to Connect

Discover one of our 28 local entrepreneurial communities »

Be the first to know as we launch in new countries and markets around the globe.

Interested in bringing MIT Technology Review to your local market?

MIT Technology ReviewMIT Technology Review - logo

 

Unsupported browser: Your browser does not meet modern web standards. See how it scores »

{ action.text }

Google Earth provides a cornucopia of exotic images of our planet taken from above. For the most part, the focus of attention is on the land and the cities, roads and natural formations that it supports.

Today, however, Fabrizio Logiurato at Trento University in Italy says that Google’s images of the oceans are just as fascinating.

Logiurato’s interest is in the wave dynamics that the images reveal. To demonstrate this, he has selected a gallery of beautiful images showing phenomena such as diffraction, refraction and interference.

For example, the image above shows how wave diffraction has caused circular beach erosion on the Italian coast at Campo Di Mare. I’ve pasted a few more of the examples he’s chosen below.

These kinds of phenomena are so widespread that he suggests asking students to search for examples of these phenomena in Google Earth as a way of teaching them about waves.

An excellent idea!

Ref: arxiv.org/abs/1201.0001: Teaching Waves with Google Earth

Interference on the Chao Phraya River, Bangkok, Thailand

Diffraction and the reflection of circular waves at Port Elizabeth, South Africa

Wave diffraction through an opening at the port of Alexandria in Egypt

Wave refraction, in which the wave fronts bend as they approach a beach at Sardegna, Italy

0 comments about this story. Start the discussion »

Tagged: Web

Reprints and Permissions | Send feedback to the editor

From the Archives

Close

Introducing MIT Technology Review Insider.

Already a Magazine subscriber?

You're automatically an Insider. It's easy to activate or upgrade your account.

Activate Your Account

Become an Insider

It's the new way to subscribe. Get even more of the tech news, research, and discoveries you crave.

Sign Up

Learn More

Find out why MIT Technology Review Insider is for you and explore your options.

Show Me