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Dust Plumes over Iraq
This page contains archived content and is no longer being updated. At the time of publication, it represented the best available science. However, more recent observations and studies may have rendered some content obsolete.
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.