Climate monitor to sample African dust

Jan 19, 2006

U.S. researchers say they plan to place a newly developed portable atmospheric laboratory in Niger to sample African dust.

Scientists in the U.S. Department of Energy's Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Program say the laboratory is designed to gain a better understanding of the potential impacts of Saharan dust on global climate.

Dust from Africa's Sahara desert -- the largest source of dust on Earth -- reaches halfway around the globe. Carried by winds and clouds, the dust travels across West Africa, the Mediterranean, Europe and then across the Atlantic into North America.

"As a point of origin for atmospheric disturbances that evolve into Atlantic storms, the Sahara is not only a driving force for the environmental conditions in Western Africa, but also for the development of weather systems that can reach the United States," said Raymond Orbach, director of the DOE's Office of Science.

Measurements obtained by the project will allow scientists to study possible reasons for the ongoing drought in West Africa and the genesis of tropical waves that evolve into hurricanes.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: ASU joins pathbreaking radio telescope project to study early universe

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

NASA HS3 instrument views two dimensions of clouds

Sep 16, 2014

NASA's Cloud Physics Lidar (CPL) instrument, flying aboard an unmanned Global Hawk aircraft in this summer's Hurricane and Severe Storm Sentinel, or HS3, mission, is studying the changing profile of the atmosphere ...

Recommended for you

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.