"Amazing how large an area it covers," Astronaut Doug Hurley wrote on Twitter of the Saharan dust plume

By Benjamin VanHoose
June 22, 2020 01:04 PM
Col. Doug Hurley/Twitter

A larger-than-usual dust plume is making its way across the globe.

By Wednesday, the large, dense collection of dust from Africa's Sahara Desert is expected to make its way to North America after traversing the Atlantic Ocean, according to CNN. While the phenomenon isn't unheard of, some experts say the scope of the current dust plume appears more pronounced than recorded in recent memory.

The dust plume could cause a "milky haze" in the sky, trigger subtle allergies and bring particularly dry air, CNN reported.

Astronaut Doug Hurley — currently on a space mission as part of the recently launched SpaceX Crew Dragon capsuleshared on Twitter a photo taken of the dust plume from his bird's-eye POV.

"We flew over this Saharan dust plume today in the west central Atlantic. Amazing how large an area it covers!" Hurley, 53, wrote along with the snapshot on Sunday.

According to CBS News, the dust plume will make its way to Texas and the southeast portion of the U.S. later this week.

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Hurley and fellow NASA astronaut Robert Behnken, 49, successfully docked at the International Space Station on May 31, a day after their historic space launch.

"It's obviously been our honor to just be a small part of this," Hurley said at the time. "We have to give credit to SpaceX, the commercial crew program, and of course NASA. It's great to get the United States back in the crew launch business and we're just really glad to be on board this magnificent complex."

The pair are close friends who say they are "lucky" to get to make the journey together.

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"We've spent a ton of time together. We could have gone two directions with that: We could have gotten to the point where we didn’t want to be around each other, or we’re closer," Hurley said in a promotional video shared by NASA ahead of the launch. "So I think just the whole experience, for me, is what we’re looking [forward to]."

On Sunday, the two scientists shared Father's Day shout-outs on social media. "Happy #FathersDay to all the Dads on Earth and in space," tweeted Hurley, replying to a photo of himself seen with his pet dog shared by his wife Karen, who called him an "amazing Dog Dad."

"Happy #FathersDay from just a few of the dads on @Space_Station today," tweeted Behnken. "My family put together a wonderful video greeting for me showing how the day would have gone if I was home. Think I can talk them into just giving me that day when I get home in a few weeks?"