Dust plumes covered almost the entire Taklimakan Desert on April 22, 2007. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite took this picture the same day.
A regular source of dust storms, the Taklimakan Desert ranks among one of the world’s largest shifting-sand deserts. To the north and south are the Tien Shan Mountains and the Kunlun Mountains, respectively. This image shows the full extent of the Taklimakan Desert and the areas to the north and south. The desert itself appears almost as a large blur, with beige dust obscuring the land surface below. North of the desert, snow cover caps the Tien Shan Mountains. A look at the high-resolution image reveals relatively lush vegetation and croplands, especially north of the Ysyk Köl (a lake).
NASA image by Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team, Goddard Space Flight Center.