(43°N 142°E) Hokkaido: lattice structure

One of the more unusual features of Hokkaido, as seen from space, is a lattice-shaped windbreak forest found in the Konsen Plateau. This pattern is created by trees (primarily larch) planted in a lattice structure to protect farmland and livestock from bitterly cold, blowing winds. There is about 3 km (1.9 mi) between the lattices, with the forest belt about 180 m wide.

These strips of forests have become habitat for various types of wildlife and birds, and are enjoyed as recreation areas for people as well.

The ‘lattice-shaped-wind-break-forest’ on Hokkaido in northern Japan became famous when astronaut named Mamoru Mori photographed it from the space shuttle in 2001.

These images taken from Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-2 in December 2017 and Febrary 2018 show the sea ice flows annually from December to the following April ,along the Sea of Okhotsk coastline in Hokkaido.Inside and below the sea ice, the phytoplankton grows in large quantities. This plays an important role in the formation of good fishing grounds.

The surface of sea ice is rough and appears slightly brighter when seen by synthetic-aperture radar (SAR). You can discern sea ice comparatively easily in an SAR image because sea ice is brighter than the sea surface, which returns only weak radio signals to the satellite.

It is the way Hokkaido grid kinks and absorbs the ravines, railway lines and mountains that makes it so beautiful.



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