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Science finds sources of Yangtze, Yellow rivers

CHINESE scientists said yesterday that they have determined the real sources of the Yangtze River and the Yellow River, the country's two longest waterways, after a 40-day survey last year.

The origin of the 6,300-kilometer Yangtze is the Damqu River - rather than the Tuotuo River as previously thought - as it is longer and bigger in flow and drainage area, according to the research results of the three rivers - the Yangtze, Yellow and Lancang.

For similar reasons, the Kar River should be considered the source of the 5,464km Yellow River, researchers said. The Marqu River was previously believed to be the source.

Researchers for the first time identified the Zayaqu River, from the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, as the source of the Lancang River, which is called the Mekong after it runs into Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam in southeast Asia.

The survey was conducted from September 6 to October 16 last year. The 40-member team consisted of experts and scholars from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, colleges and other institutions.

Tang Qianli, survey leader, said the team used advanced technologies, including a global positioning system, geographical information system and remote sensing to ensure the data were "comprehensive, scientific and authoritative."

The team collected meteorology, hydrology, glacier, geology and geography data in the origin areas, which was important to world geography.


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