Monday, April 06, 2009

Satellite captures northern Arizona dust storm

NASA's Earth Observatory site has a MODIS satellite image of the dust storm that struck northeastern Arizona last Friday (April 3, 2009). With winds over 145 kilometers (90 miles) per hour reported near Meteor Crater, east of Flagstaff, the storm reduced visibility and forced the temporary closure of part of Interstate 40, according to The Arizona Republic.

We had friends coming to Tucson from the Phoenix area who were delayed 2 hours because of the high winds.

The NASA site reports, "The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured this image on April 3, 2009. In this image, clear skies allow a view of multiple source points of this dust storm. The source points occur along an arc that runs from northwest to southeast. Blowing toward the northeast, the dust plumes exhibit a range of colors, including pale beige and red-brown, reflecting the varied soils from which the plumes arise."

Ref: Engelbart, D. (2009, April 3). I-40 near Flagstaff reopened after winds cut visibility. The Arizona Republic. Accessed April 6, 2009.

NASA image by Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team, Goddard Space Flight Center. Caption by Michon Scott.

Thanks to Hobart at for spotting this.

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