Data from Fengyun-4 Used for the First Time to Track Dust Storms

Image courtesy of CNSA.

The northern parts of China have seen the most serious dust storm of the year.

On the morning of 4 May, Fengyun-4 (FY-4) meteorological satellite monitored the movement of the dust storm and captured it as an RGB animation: it was shown that as the cyclone moved towards the east, its effect expanded eastward into the majority of North China, the majority of Inner Mongolia and its northern borders, the northern parts of Shaanxi, the eastern parts of Gansu, the majority of Ningxia, the northern and south western parts of Heilongjiang with clear signs of dust distribution; the western part of North East China was blanketed in the cloud. The estimated area of the dust storm monitored by the satellite is 192 thousand square kilometres.

This is the very first time that the data from the FY-4 satellite was utilized for dust storm meteorology. FY-4 is China’s next generation geostationary meteorological satellite, which has a 14-channelled AGRI (Advanced Geostationary Radiation Imager) and is equipped with meteorologically-enabled high temporal-spatial resolution and an ability to capture detailed texture and structure of this phenomenon, thus bringing more clarity in the identification of the affected regional boundaries of the dust storm.

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