The spatial and temporal characteristics of dust storms in the Middle East were studied by an analysis of the visibility reduction in that region. Eight 'three-hours' mean values for each month for a period of 21 years (1973-1993) were used. Data were subjected to cluster analysis of their temporal behaviour. Four main regions were identified and mapped. Stations within each cluster (region) have a similar temporal behaviour different from the behaviour of stations out of that cluster. Sudan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and the Persian Gulf, are the regions that reported the greatest occurrence of dust storms. Dust storms in Iran, north-eastern Iraq and Syria, the Persian Gulf and southern Arabian Peninsula are more frequent in summer. In western Iraq and Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, northern Israel, northern Arabian Peninsula and southern Egypt they occur mainly in the spring, while in southern Israel and in the Mediterranean parts of northern Egypt, in winter and spring.
- Cluster analysis
- Dust storms
- Middle East
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health