August 25, 2013 - Dust storms off West Africa

Dust storms off West Africa

Strong winds blew off the coast of West Africa in August, 2013, carrying dust across the Atlantic Ocean and the Canary Islands. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this true-color image on August 19, 2013.

An plume of tan dust arcs southward off the coast of Western Sahara, while a broad cloud of dust hovers off Morocco, obscuring the waters below and extends southward. A light veil of dust covers the Canary Islands.

The motion of the winds is not only written in the appearance of dust, but also in the clouds. Swirling patterns seen on the lee side of some of the Canary Islands are caused by turbulence in the air as the flow is interrupted by the high peaks on the islands.

Image Facts
Satellite: Aqua
Date Acquired: 8/19/2013
Resolutions: 1km (553.3 KB), 500m (1.8 MB), 250m (4.4 MB)
Bands Used: 1,4,3
Image Credit: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC