Impact of Saharan Dust on Tropical Cyclogenesis
Monsoon rainfalls sustain the livelihood of more than half of the world’s population. Understanding the mechanism that drives the water cycle and fresh water distribution is highlighted as one of the major near-term goals in NASA’s Earth Science Strategy, and the interaction between natural/anthropogenic aerosols, clouds, and precipitation is a critical component of that mechanism. Analyses of the long-term trend of July–August precipitation anomaly for the last 50 years in the twentieth century depict that the largest regional precipitation deficit occurs over the Sahel, where the monsoon water cycle plays an important role. Thus, it is of paramount importance to study how dust aerosols, as well as air pollution and smoke, influence monsoon variability.