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2009-12-21T17:13:23-0600

Monday, December 21, 2009 - 5:13pm

The snowstorm that blanketed the East Coast this weekend was so big, it is even impressive from space. NASA’s Aqua satellite took this image centered on Washington, D.C., on Sunday with its MODIS instrument.

The blizzard shut down the federal government, stranded travelers, left hundreds of thousands without power and crushed the hopes of many retailers hoping for big sales during the weekend before Christmas.

The image covers 300 miles lengthwise. The two big rivers near the center are the Susquehanna (to the north) and Potomac rivers, which run into Chesapeake Bay. Washington, D.C., sits alongside the Potomac, just north of the river’s hook-shaped curve. The inlet to the north is Delaware Bay.