A dust storm spanned hundreds of kilometers over the borders between Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan on December 4, 2010. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite took this picture the same day. The dust appears thickest in southwestern Afghanistan, and waves ripple across the dust plume’s surface. Over Pakistan, dust forms swirls, similar to vortices sometimes seen in clouds over the ocean.
Sand seas spread across the border between southwestern Afghanistan and Pakistan, and impermanent lakes line the border between Afghanistan and Iran. This dust storm appears to arise from the dry lake region along the Iran-Afghanistan border, and may pick up more dust over the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.