Here is a new, portable atmospheric laboratory equipped with sophisticated instruments and data systems. All credits goes to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Program. To gain a better understanding of the potential impacts of Saharan dust on global climate, the Department is placing the laboratory in Niger, Africa.
Africa’s Sahara desert is the largest source of dust on the planet. Dust from here reaches halfway around the globe. The dust is carried by winds and clouds through West African, Mediterranean, and European skies, and across the Atlantic into North America. But it was unfortunate till date that Africa is one of the most under-sampled climate regimes in the world. And this situation left scientists with least information about its contribution to global climate. And this gave birth to this Mobile Climate Monitoring Facility.
“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 Dr. Raymond Orbach, Director of DOE’s Office of Science. “Our ability to predict the impact of the Saharan dust on weather and climate is dependent on gathering accurate and long-term data sets for computer models that simulate these effects.”
Via: Science Daily