How dust informs climate now, in the past and future

Article in Nature, Vol. 531, 24 March 2016, pp. 493, “The past, present and future of African dust”

 

Summary of article: An excellent study on calibrating the effect of wind on topography using dust as an indicator of wind speed and wind fields, which yields important information on how African dust affects weather patterns and regional weather oscillations on a decadal timescale. Most importantly, it led to a prediction of the seeding of hurricanes in the tropical Atlantic ocean near Africa’s west coast. Overall, this article is a good illustration of the research approach of using dust as an approximate proxy parameter for difficult to measure parameters such as wind field and wind speed over large swathe of uninhabited regions. Specifically, modern remote sensing satellites would be able to use infrared and optical imagery to gain an understanding of the density and coverage of dust storms in the Sahara Desert.

 

Link to original article: http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v531/n7595/full/nature17149.html?foxtrotcallback=true

 

Category: Interesting scientific articles, climate change, atmospheric science,

Tags: wind fields, wind patterns, climate change, proxy parameter, dust, Africa,

 

 

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