National Geographic News

National Geographic News

Published March 15, 2011

Zoom in and out of satellite pictures of Japan before and after a magnitude 9.0 earthquake spawned a deadly tsunami on March 11. (Also see: 20 "unforgettable" pictures of the tsunami.)

Mouse over the images to access zoom tools. "Home" icon returns picture to fully zoomed-out view.

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Minamisanriku, Japan, in 2002 and After 2011 Tsunami

A 30-foot (9-meter) tsunami wave following the March 11 earthquake destroyed the village of Minamisanriku, where up to 10,000 people—60 percent of its population—are now missing, according to the Telegraph.

Satellite pictures courtesy Google, GeoEye (2002) and Google, Digital Globe (2011)

Soccer Field in Minamisanriku, Japan, in 2002 and After 2011 Tsunami

Survivors of the Minamisanriku tsunami reported seeing the whole town being pushed into a valley by rising waters, according to the Telegraph.

Satellite pictures courtesy Google, GeoEye (2002) and Google, Digital Globe (2011)

Yagawahama, Japan, in 2007 and After the 2011 Tsunami

Damage to roads and infrastructure have prevented rescue workers from accessing much of the hard-hit coastal prefecture of Migayi, where the town of Yagawahama is located, according to Voice of America.

Satellite pictures courtesy Google, Digital Globe (2007) and Google, Geo Eye (2011)

Sendai Airport, Japan, in 2003 and After the 2011 Tsunami

In a scene of "utter carnage" on March 11, houses-turned-flotsam smashed into buildings of the once bustling Sendai Airport, reducing it to rubble, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

Satellite pictures courtesy Google, Digital Globe (2003) and Google, Geo Eye (2011)

Yuriage, Japan, in 2008 and After the 2011 Tsunami

Once a "pleasant fishing port," this town of 7,000 has been wiped off the map by the giant wave, according to BBC News.

Satellite pictures courtesy Google, Digital Globe (2008) and Google, Geo Eye (2011)

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