A thick plume of Saharan dust swirls over the Red Sea in this image captured by the Suomi NPP satellite’s VIIRS instrument on April 1, 2018. The dust storm is one of several seen by satellites over the Sahara Desert during the past week. These events are common during the springtime, when southerly winds associated with low pressure systems moving across the Mediterranean Sea stir up large amounts of dust and sand.
This side-by-side comparison from the Suomi NPP polar-orbiting satellite shows snow-covered Eastern Europe before and after a plume of dust from the Sahara Desert blanketed the region over the weekend. In the left hand image, snow cover over Moldova and Ukraine appears bright white; in the right image, the snow has a brown and orange tint due to Saharan dust settling over the region. Occasionally, strong southwesterly winds transport large quantities of sand from the Sahara northward across the Mediterranean Sea into Europe.
The Suomi NPP satellite's VIIRS instrument captured this week's nor'easter moving away from the U.S. East Coast on March 22, 2018. The center of the storm's sprawling circulation can be seen offshore of New England, while fresh snow cover is visible in white areas from central Virginia into Pennsylvania and New Jersey. This week's storm was the fourth powerful nor'easter to hit the East Coast in less than three weeks.
The Suomi NPP satellite's VIIRS instrument captured this view of clear skies over most of the northeastern United States and Canada on March 18, 2018. This image shows the snow-covered land in stunning detail. While snow cover is widespread across Canada, New England, New York and parts of Pennsylvania, more to the south snow is limited to the higher altitudes of the Appalachian mountains, clearly contrasting with the surrounding areas, where vegetation is still dormant from the winter.
The Suomi NPP satellite's VIIRS instrument captured these ice eddies in the Labrador Sea, off the coast of eastern Canada, on March 8, 2018. The swirling patterns appear to be clouds at first glance, but they are actually ocean currents made visible by melting sea ice being mixed into ocean currents along the coast.
The Suomi NPP satellite's VIIRS instrument captured this image of Tropical Cyclone Kelvin in northwest Australia at 0630 UTC on February 18, 2018. The storm, which initially developed as a low pressure system off Australia's northern coast, was unusual for strengthening after it made landfall. While most tropical systems weaken after crossing land, Kelvin made landfall as a Category 1 storm, then continued to intensify to a Category 2 storm, lashing areas with winds above 90 mph.
The Suomi NPP satellite's VIIRS instrument captured these parallel rows of clouds, known as "cloud streets" streaming over the Great Lakes on Christmas Day 2017. These cloud formations helped deliver record-setting snowfall in Erie, Pa., where more than 60 inches of snow fell over a two-day period.
Multiple rows of cumulus clouds appear over Texas, Louisiana and the Gulf Coast in this image captured by the Suomi NPP satellite's VIIRS instrument on February 15, 2018. The southwesterly atmospheric flow pattern can be seen in the orientation of the clouds, as warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico moved from southwest to northeast. These southwest winds led to a mild, springlike day across much of the southern and eastern United States.
The Suomi NPP satellite flew over clear skies on January 10, 2018, capturing this image of snow on the ground in New England. Last week's 'Bomb Cyclone' nor'easter brought frigid, below-zero temperatures and a reported 14 inches of snow to the greater Boston, Massachusetts area. But with Boston's and regional high temperatures near 50 oF today, lots of snow is melting, leading the NOAA National Weather Service to post widespread Flood Watches.
NOAA/NASA's Suomi NPP satellite captured this image of the Korean Peninsula on February 8, 2018, one day before the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Despite recent cold temperatures, there is relatively little snow over the country's more mountainous terrain, including the Taebaek Mountains where this year's games will be held. This imagery shows snow cover in the southwestern corner of the country (bright white areas near the coast), while areas near Pyeongchang are only lightly snow covered.