Dust from the Gobi Desert blew across north-central China in early November 2010, with plumes traveling eastward in the direction of Beijing. The dust forms an arc that roughly mimics the Mongolia-China border (top image). In the east, it is partially hidden by clouds.
The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured this natural-color image at 12:10 p.m. Beijing time (4:10 UTC) on November 10, 2010.
With a name meaning “waterless place,” the Gobi Desert spreads across Mongolia and China. Although much of the land surface consists of bare rock, a large sand sea occurs just south of the border. A multitude of source points for this dust storm occur in that area, as shown in detail in the inset and bottom image.