The coast in Namibia and panorama of the city Walvis Bay. Credit: Oleg Znamenskiy

Land surface features in the Namib desert

2 March 2006 07:15 UTC

The coast in Namibia and panorama of the city Walvis Bay. Credit: Oleg Znamenskiy
The coast in Namibia and panorama of the city Walvis Bay. Credit: Oleg Znamenskiy

Land surface features in the Namib desert in March 2006.

Last Updated

25 May 2022

Published on

02 March 2006

By Jochen Kerkmann (EUMETSAT)

The image below demostrates the high spatial resolution of the HRV channel onboard the Meteosat-8 satellite. It shows the Namib desert between L├╝deritz and Walvis Bay (see Interpretation). The bright, highly-reflective desert surface clearly stands out against the darker surfaces further to the east. Very often the coastal area is covered by fog in the morning hours, but on this day the coastline is clearly visible in the satellite image. Some low-level clouds appear over the higher parts of the country.

The most interesting feature in this image, however, is the Sossusvlei area, one of the greatest tourist destinations in the Namib Naukluft National Park in Namibia. The Tsauchab river valley that occasionally brings water to the 'vlei' is clearly visible (the last time that the vlei was filled with water was in 2000). This valley is surrounded by the worlds largest sand dunes. Looking carefully at the early-morning HRV image, one gets an impression of the dunes as lines if brighter and darker grey shades.

Land surface features in the Namib desert
Figure 1: Meteosat-8 HRV, 2 March 2006, 07:15 UTC. Interpretation