Dust Over the Arabian Sea • Earth.com

Last update: November 20th, 2019 at 9:15 am

Dust plumes rippled and swirled over the Arabian Sea in early March 2009. The dust in this region likely resulted from multiple sources, including plumes from Pakistan in the north and the Arabian Peninsula in the west. (The large image shows a more extensive view of this dust storm.)

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite took this picture on March 3, 2009. The dust appears gray-beige over the ocean’s deep blue surface. Near the upper right corner of the image, the dust swirls in a counter-clockwise direction, the innermost coil of the plume surrounded by tiny white dots of clouds. Along the right edge of the image, dust and clouds form wave patterns. To the south, the ocean surface appears bright. This results not from dust plumes but from sunglint—the mirror-like reflection of sunlight off the ocean surface.

Credit: NASA image by Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team. Caption by Michon Scott.

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