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5 years ago

Stunning Blue Ponds Appear Amid Barren Landscape In NASA Image

Geo Beats
Geo Beats
An image released by NASA shows a few stunning blue ponds amidst an otherwise barren-looking landscape. The overhead photo from May 13, 2014, actually shows a specific type of mine in Moab, Utah.


An image released by NASA shows a few stunning blue ponds amidst an otherwise barren-looking landscape. 

The overhead photo from May 13, 2014, actually shows a specific type of mine in Moab, Utah.

As an article by the agency states, “The mine produces muriate of potash, a potassium-containing salt used widely by farmers in fertilizer.” 

The process is a long one, starting with dried deposits consolidating into a potash ore which, at this site, lies nearly 4,000 feet below the surface. 

Miners then pump in water to dissolve the underground blocks and, eventually, the brine is forced to the surface where it is dyed blue to speed up the evaporation process--a period of about 300 days. 

NASA reveals that “in 2013, the United States produced about 970,000 metric tons of potash, about two percent of global production.” 

Eight-five percent of the domestic supply was used by the fertilizer industry.  
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