A recent article published in NASA’s Earth Observatory featured an interview with ESSIC Associate Research Scientist Santiago Gassó about his observation of a large dust storm that occurred in Greenland.
The dust in Greenland is mostly made up of glacial flour, a fine-grained silt formed by glaciers grinding and pulverizing rock. These Arctic and high-latitude dust storms can be hard to spot with satellites because of cloud cover, but the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite and a sensor on the European Space Agency’s Sentinel-2 were able to detect and collect imagery on the September storm.
Gassó remarks that this is the biggest event detected and reported by satellites to his knowledge.
In addition to his work at UMD, Gassó is also a research associate at NASA Goddard, specializing in observational studies of aerosols, clouds, and their interactions using a combination of satellite detectors. He has published several journal articles on the subject of dust transport at high latitudes as characterized by satellite, model, and surface observations.
To read the story in full, click here: “Glacier Flour in Greenland Skies”.