The River Nile and the surrounding desert areas of northeast Africa and parts of the Middle East were captured in this...

Posted by ESA - European Space Agency on Saturday, April 2, 2016

The European Space Agency's (ESA) new image of River Nile has revealed the Egyptian river as blood red leaving several social media users horrified. In the image captured by ESA's Sentinel-3A satellite, River Nile can be seen as deep red with the surrounding desert regions of northeast Africa and Middle East seen in light brown hues.

"The red areas are vegetation as seen in infrared by the satellite's radiometer," said ESA on their Facebook page. The red colour is therefore a result of heat radiated by the vegetation around the River Nile. The image, however, has sent chills down frightened social media users with several users commenting that the image is a sign of the end of the world and others referring to a biblical legend.

"[God commanded Moses to] stretch out thine hand upon the waters of Egypt ... that they may become blood ... the 'blood' that appears to be flowing through the center of Egypt isn't actually blood, nor is it actually the Nile, but rather the thin strip of vegetation that borders its banks and fans out with the river into the massive Nile delta," reported The Weather Channel.

Launched in February 2016, the ESA's Sentinel-3A satellite is designed to capture systematic measurements of Earth's oceans, land, ice and atmosphere with the help of instruments, like the Sea and Land Surface Temperature Radiometer. "It is very exciting to see all three instruments working well. Of course, it is still early days but we are looking to exploiting their full potential and use them together. For example, combining radiometer and colour data will help us to understand the state of the vegetation better," said ESA's Sentinel-3 project manager, Bruno Berruti. The satellite will also provide ESA with vital near-real time information for ocean and weather forecasting, and monitor wildfires amongst other things over land.