High Winds Kick Up Dust Storms Visible From Space

By Tom Yulsman | February 21, 2013 1:55 am

Blowing dust in Mexico, and from the White Sands of New Mexico, was visible to NASA’s Aqua satellite on Wednesday

As a huge storm  began barreling into the Southwest on Wednesday, high winds kicked up large amounts of dust, as can be seen in the satellite image above.

In the picture, thick dust plumes can be seen streaming toward the northeast from Mexico, along with one particularly prominent plume from the White Sands of New Mexico. (The whitish patch visible toward the top of the image.)

The hashtag “#haboob” made the rounds on Twitter late on Wednesday, along with a kind of cool Instagram photo of what might be a dust storm moving in on an undisclosed location.

A satellite image posted by meteorologist Brad Panovich also got some traction.

And the ever awesome John Fleck of the Albuquerque Journal had this to say:

We’re at that awkward point in New Mexico’s drought where a “snowstorm” may need to be renamed a “dust storm.”

As winter weather began moving in Tuesday from the west, the Albuquerque Health Department issued a blowing dust advisory, with high winds expected across much of New Mexico.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Remote Sensing, select, Top Posts, Weather


ImaGeo is a visual blog focusing on the intersection of imagery, imagination and Earth. It focuses on spectacular visuals related to the science of our planet, with an emphasis (although not an exclusive one) on the unfolding Anthropocene Epoch.

About Tom Yulsman

Tom Yulsman is Director of the Center for Environmental Journalism and a Professor of Journalism at the University of Colorado, Boulder. He also continues to work as a science and environmental journalist with more than 30 years of experience producing content for major publications. His work has appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Audubon, Climate Central, Columbia Journalism Review, Discover, Nieman Reports, and many other publications. He has held a variety of editorial positions over the years, including a stint as editor-in-chief of Earth magazine. Yulsman has written one book: Origins: the Quest for Our Cosmic Roots, published by the Institute of Physics in 2003.


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