Annual variations of physical properties of desert dust over Israel

P. L. Israelevich*, E. Ganor, Z. Levin, J. H. Joseph

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The annual variation of the desert dust aerosol loading above the eastern Mediterranean is studied. Three periods are identified, March-May, July-August, and September-November, for which the properties of dust particles are distinctly different. The dust layers are at higher altitudes and consist of larger particles in summer and autumn than in spring. The real part of the refractive index of the particles is the same for summer and autumn periods and exceeds the real part of the refractive index measured during the spring. The imaginary part of the refractive index is negligible both in spring and in summer, whereas the imaginary refractive index becomes significant in September-November, indicating the presence of absorbing aerosols. The difference is attributed to different sources and desert dust trajectories in these periods. In spring the desert aerosol from the source in Chad is transported to the eastern Mediterranean predominantly along the North African coast. This is the motion associated with Sharav cyclones. The aerosols come to the eastern Mediterranean via Egypt from the sources near the Red Sea in July-August. In autumn the dust arrives to the eastern Mediterranean from the Libyan coast.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)AAC 4-1 - AAC 4-9
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research
Issue number13
StatePublished - 2003


  • Aerosol properties
  • Desert dust
  • Dust sources
  • Dust transport


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