Synoptic analysis of dust storm over Arabian Peninsula: a case study on February 28, 2009

Ozdemir E. T., Korkmaz F. M., Yavuz V.

NATURAL HAZARDS, vol.92, no.2, pp.805-827, 2018 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 92 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s11069-018-3226-y
  • Journal Name: NATURAL HAZARDS
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.805-827
  • Keywords: Arabian Peninsula, Hysplit, Rub'al Khali Desert, Sand storm, United Arab Emirates, MIDDLE-EAST, IMPACTS, IRAN
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Sand and dust storms are causing hazards and problems in aviation as well as the dangers and distresses they cause on living things. The low meteorological visibility, the presence of strong winds with gust, and the transport of dust and sand particles by the wind are dangerous on landing and departure of aircrafts, and even on planes that are parked. The main aim of the study is to examine the meteorological conditions causing the dust storm that took place in the Arabian Peninsula on February 28, 2009, and to determine the source of dust caused dust storm, sand storm, blown sand, and blown dust at the airports. Within the scope of the study, aviation routine weather report (METAR) and aviation selected special weather report (SPECI) reports have been assessed at many airports over Arabian Peninsula (AP), the northern part of the AP and North Africa. As model outputs; NCEP-DOE Reanalysis 2 data, BSC-DREAM8B, and HYSPLIT model were used. In the satellite images; METEOSAT MSG dust RGB images, MODIS, and Kalpana-1 data were used. According to obtained results, dust storms were detected in Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates (UAE). At Al-Ahsa Airport in Saudi Arabia, the lowest visibility measured on February 28, 2009, dropping to 200 m, which was dominated by blowing sand. The source region of the dust observed at Dubai Airport in UAE is the eastern regions of the Rub'al Khali Desert located between Saudi Arabia, Oman, and UAE.