Funafuti

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Related to Funafuti Atoll: Fongafale

Funafuti

(fo͞onäfo͞o`tē), capital and chief atoll of TuvaluTuvalu
, independent Commonwealth nation (2005 est. pop. 11,600), 10 sq mi (26 sq km), composed of nine low coral atolls, formerly known as the Ellice (or Lagoon) Islands, scattered over the W Pacific Ocean. The capital is the atoll of Funafuti.
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, S Pacific. It comprises 30 islets of a reef 13 mi (21 km) long, with a land area of c.1 sq mi (2.6 sq km). The islet of FongafaleFongafale
, islet (2001 est. pop. 5,000), site of the government center and largest settlement in the island nation of Tuvalu. Part of the atoll of Funafuti (which is officially the capital), Fongafale is also the site of a meteorological station, a hospital, Tuvalu's main port,
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 is the most populous part of the atoll; the center of government is there. The atoll was discovered in 1819 and became part of a British colony in 1915. An expedition led by Sir Edgeworth David in 1897 proved the Darwinian theory of atoll formation (see coral reefscoral reefs,
limestone formations produced by living organisms, found in shallow, tropical marine waters. In most reefs, the predominant organisms are stony corals, colonial cnidarians that secrete an exoskeleton of calcium carbonate (limestone).
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) by sinking a 1,100 ft (335 m) bore into the island.