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Dust Plumes over Iraq

Dust Plumes over Iraq

A massive dust plume swirled over Iraq and Iran on April 16, 2008. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured this image the same day. Against the background of generally hazy skies, the plume forms a slight S-curve near the Iraq-Iran border. In the south, dust and clouds mingle over Kuwait and the Persian Gulf (image lower right). In western Iraq, however, skies are clear enough to allow a view of Buhayrat ath Tharthar.

The floodplain of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers provides plentiful material for dust storms, and the area may have contributed to this dust. This plume might result, however, from dust storm activity in northern Iraq the previous day.

NASA image courtesy MODIS Rapid Response Team, Goddard Space Flight Center. Caption by Michon Scott.