Dust from Africa

May 14, 2004


Provided by: Earth Observatory, NASA GSFC
Summary authors & editors: Earth Observatory; Jim Foster

The above image showing a huge plume of dust moving off northwestern Africa was captured on March 6, 2004 by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) onboard the Aqua satellite. This dust likely originated from the Bodele Depression, Chad (central Africa). The depression was formerly the location of a large lake and is now one of the largest sources of wind-blown dust on our planet. On occasion, a thick veil of dust will stretch across the Sahara Desert and thousands of kilometers into the Atlantic Ocean, as shown on this image. Western Sahara is to the lower right and the Canary Islands are at right center.

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