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Posts tagged Strait of Hormuz

Dust Storm Over Iran

24.8N 58.3E

January 17th, 2013 Category: Dust Storms

Gulf of Oman – January 12th, 2013

A dust storm can be seen spreading over eastern Iran and western Pakistan in this image. The dust blows southward, over the coast of the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman and Strait of Hormuz (right to left). In Iran, dust storms rank among the leading natural hazards. The fact that the country is mostly arid or semiarid, other than the subtropical climate of the Caspian Sea coast, creates favorable conditions for airborn dust.

Dust Over Strait of Hormuz and Gulf of Oman

24.8N 57.3E

January 13th, 2013 Category: Dust Storms

Gulf of Oman – January 12th, 2013

Dust blows off the coast of Iran and over the Strait of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman. In winter in this region, dust storms are associated chiefly with the passage of westerly depressions. Here, the dust storm may be connected to a local phenomenon known as the “Shamal” (an Arabic word for “north”).

A shamal is defined as sustained winds of 25 knots or greater. Wind direction is almost always northwesterly. The Shamal produces the most widespread hazardous weather known to the region. The winter Shamal is generally characterized by durations of either 24-36 hours or 3-5 days.

This “3-5 Day Shamal” occurs 1-3 times a winter and produces the strongest winds and highest seas found in the Persian Gulf. Over exposed Persian Gulf waters, sustained winds have reached 50kt which have produced 15+ ft seas. The 3-5 day shamal arises from the temporary stagnation of a 500mb short wave over or just east of the Strait of Hormuz , or from the establishment of a mean long wave trough stalling approximately 56E. Persistent dust and sandstorms occur.

Dust that restricts visibility is confined to the coasts and the immediate offshore areas of the Gulf of Oman during a strong “Shamal”. Visibility drops as low as 3-5NM. Worst conditions are found at the mouths of rivers or canyons. Dust settles rapidly once winds drop below 15kt.

Rows of Dust Over Gulf of Oman – December 31st, 2012

24.8N 58.9E

December 31st, 2012 Category: Dust Storms, Image of the day

India and Pakistan – December 28th, 2012

Dust blows off the coast of Iran in long, parallel rows, across the Gulf  of Oman, to the Arabian Peninsula (click here for more images). The dust remains east of the Strait of Hormuz; to the west, sediments can be seen in the Persian Gulf lining the coast of the United Arab Emirates and west of the island of Qeshm.

Dust Over Persian Gulf, Between Iran and United Arab Emirates

24.6N 51.4E

May 1st, 2012 Category: Dust Storms

Persian Gulf - April 28th, 2012

A thick cloud of dust blows over the Persian Gulf, seeming to originate in Iran, to the north, and reaching across the gulf to Qatar (lower left corner) and the United Arab Emirates (below center and right). A smaller amount of dust can be seen in and around the island of Qeshm Strait of Hormuz, near the right edge.

Dust Storm Over Arabian Peninsula Waning

22.6N 53.5E

March 26th, 2012 Category: Dust Storms

Dust Over Arabian Peninsula - March 22nd, 2012

Although the dust storm that has been affecting the Middle East over the last week appears to be waning (click here for previous images), a thin veil of dust can be seen blowing across the Persian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz and Gulf of Oman, between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. Visible through the dust are sediments from the Shatt al’ Arab entering the northern part of the Persian Gulf, as well as a range of mountains parallel to the northeastern coast of Oman.