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Why Is the U.S. Glowing Red?

In an uncanny image released by NASA, half of the United States is glowing a bright pinkish red, but why? What you’re seeing is the ongoing photosynthetic activity in corn fields between 2007 and 2011 as measured by satellite sensors. (The color red was applied to the illustration to represent the glow.) Chlorophyll, a pigment in plants, is what’s causing the glow, which is invisible to the human eye. According to the researchers, who published their work in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the brighter the glow the better, because that indicates the crops are more productive.

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