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Near-real-time AIRS imagery of central African dust storm in March 2010

AIRS provides near-real-time images of current environmental events

Near-real-time AIRS imagery of central African dust storm in March 2010

Small image of the African dust storm as observed by AIRS on March 22. The diagonal white areas are gaps between the instrument's scanning swath.

Near-real-time AIRS imagery of central African dust storm in March 2010

A massive dust storm swept out of the southern Sahara desert and over west African coastal countries in late March, 2010.   The dust storm caused the cancellation of airplane flights and posed a potential health hazard to numerous residents in the area.   The capital city of Nigeria, Lagos, was cloaked in a twilight haze.  According to weather experts, this event was an unusually late season manifestation of the harmattan.

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) provides near-real-time (NRT) data that allows the observation of events like these while they are happening, with the data available just hours after the satellite passes over a particular region.    The data is provided via the GES DISC's Web Map Service (WMS).  Successive AIRS images in the AIRS image gallery provide a daily look at the progression of this storm over Africa and the Atlantic Ocean.

African Dust Storms  (each image shown here can be clicked to see a much larger version)

AIRS Image Gallery

 

More information:  AIRS NRT data and services.

 

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Last updated: Mar 30, 2010 04:44 PM ET
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