Saharan Dust Over the Red Sea

Saharan Dust Over the Red Sea

Strong winds blowing across the southern edge of the Sahara Desert generated a fierce sandstorm in early June 2010. Defined by clouds of dust, the storm covers hundreds of square kilometers and seems to have many fronts in this true-color image, acquired by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite on June 9.

The thickest dust cloud blows out of southern Sudan and over the Red Sea near the center of the image. The dust cloud is so dense than nothing is visible beneath it. From the ground, the blowing sand would probably block the Sun. Slightly thinner plumes of dust blow north, fanning out over the Red Sea. A slightly thinner layer of dust blurs the southeast corner of the scene.

With a resolution of 250 meters per pixel, the large image is the highest-resolution version of the image. The image is available in additional resolutions from the MODIS Rapid Response Team.

Images & Animations


File Dimensions

  • 720x960
  • JPEG
  • 3000x4000
  • JPEG 864 KB
  • KMZ 10 KB


  • Data Date:

    June 9, 2010
  • Visualization Date:

    June 10, 2010
  • Sensor(s):

    Terra - MODIS


NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration