AN improvement and increased availability of satellite imagery has helped unearth more than 650 new islands in a recent study by Duke University. You might think that we already know about more or less all of the land masses on Earth, but youd be wrong. A new study by researchers from Duke University and Meredith College of the globes geography has revealed the existence of 657 new islands, reports Our Amazing Planet. An earlier study from 2001 recorded the existence of 1,492 barrier islands. In this most recent study, however researchers had greater access to satellite images, topographical maps and navigational charts, which allowed them to discover 2,149 islands. In other words, the islands did not all just miraculously appear, but were either unknown to scientists or misclassified due to a lack of research tools. Unlike most pieces of land on the planet, barrier islands appear, disappear, change shape, and move over time, as the waves and tides build-up and erode the bits of earth. DT