The Hottest Places on Earth!

Weather Talk

POSTED: Thursday, June 5, 2014 - 11:49am

UPDATED: Thursday, June 5, 2014 - 11:59am

Nasa has satellite based sensors that are detecting hotter places than Death Valley!

El Paso is headed towards day #6 of 100º plus temperatures with 4 of those days shattering previous record high temperatures! Of course the anniversary of the hottest temperature ever officially recorded in El Paso of a scorching 114º (45.5º)! That 1994 summer El Paso saw 62 100º days with a record 23 100º days in a row! From June 23rd through July 15th of that year. Researching that article got me thinking “Where are some of the hottest places on earth?” In today’s “Weather Talk” I will tell you how NASA measures even hotter temperatures from space and. A list of the top ten hottest places on the planet!

NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Agency) satellite equipped with a moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) is able to measure temperatures here from space, NASA.states that “The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instruments on NASA's Terra and Aqua satellites and the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) on several National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration(NOAA) satellites. These sensitive instruments can pick up thermal radiation emitted from Earth's surface, even in areas lacking much heat.” NASA and NOAA use the MODIS satellite based high resolution radiometers to measure the hottest and coldest places on earth. MODIS has helped us find even hotter temperatures that Death Valley!

Dallol, Ethiopia
This town is located in the northern part of Ethiopia in a desert area called the Danakil Depression. Dallol holds the record for having the highest average annual temperature ever recorded. During a period from 1960 to 1966, Dallol had a 94ºF (34.4ºC) yearly average temperature! Many days are spent well over the 100º mark. Earthquakes and tremors are frequently also felt because there are several active volcanoes.

El Azizia, Libya
El Azizia made history after a weather station there recorded a blistering 136.4ºF (58ºC) on Sep.13th, 1922. This was declared the highest temperature ever directly measured on Earth. The record stood for 90 years until the World Meteorological Organization researched and determined in 2012 that the 1922 temperature measurement to be flawed and declared it to be invalid. This northern African is still one of the hottest as El Azizia regularly sees temperature heat over 120º mark during the summer.

Tirat Zvi, Israel
Tirat Zvi is a religious kibbutz located in southern Israel in the Beit She'an Valley. This area is 722 feet below sea level and is very fertile because it is often flooded by the nearby Jordan River. This are really heats up during the summer time. In June 1942 Tirat Zvi recorded 129ºF (53.9º) , the highest temperature ever officially measured in Asia!
Each house is completely surrounded by shade canopies and there are spring fed pools to cool off in!

Timbuktu, Mali
Timbuktu is a historical and legendary town located in western Africa is a city in the West African nation of Mali situated 13 miles (20 km) north of the River Niger on the southern edge of the Sahara Desert. Timbuktu has been a trade and educational hub since ancient times. Timbuktu is slowly being overtaken by the Sahara Desert. There are giant sand dunes that are drifting over the edge of the city and very often the streets are buried in windswept sand. Temperatures have been recorded exceeding 130º ( 54.4ºC)!

Kebili, Tunisia
A desert oasis in central Tunisia, Kebili is ironically where people go to escape the North African heat. At least here, there are palm trees to provide shade, and water to cool off in. Even so, Kebili is no stranger to high temperatures: The mercury has topped out at over 131º (55º), some of the highest ever recorded in Africa.

Rub’ al Khali, Arabian Peninsula
The Rub' al Khali is the largest continuous sand desert in the world! This area covers about a third of the Arabian Peninsula, which includes Oman, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. High temperatures have been recorded at 133ºF (56.1ºC). This region is the definition of dry! The average annual rainfall is less than 1.2 inches!

Death Valley, United States
Death Valley is in the Mojave Desert of California, USA. So official highest world temperature ever recorded was is the 134°F (56.7°C) recorded at Furnace Creek Ranch, CA, USA [formerly Greenland Ranch] in Death Valley, on October/7th,/1913 . Death Valley is the lowest, driest and hottest region in North America. The World Meteorological Organization awarded Death Valley with the record in 2012 when it was determined that the previous record holder, El Azizia, Libya, reported an invalid measurement.

Flaming Mountains, China
The Flaming Mountains are located in the Tian Shan Mountain range of Xinjiang, China. These mountains have gullies that have been eroded into the red sandstone bedrock. This makes the rocks look like a flames. A NASA satellite equipped with a moderate resolution imaging or MODIS. This device is capable of measuring land surface temperatures from space. MODIS recorded 152.2º F (67.7ºC) back in 2008. This reading was the hottest recorded on the planet that year!

Australia's Outback
Most of Australia’s interior is a vast desert! Australia is the driest inhabited continent on the planet! The indigenous Aborigines are some of the few humans that live in the outback and they do not have many weather stations. In 2003 there was a severe drought brought on by 2002 El Niño-Southern Oscillation. A NASA satellite equipped with MODIS measured a land surface temperature of 156.7ºF (69.8º) in an area called “The Badlands” located in the Queensland Outback.

Dasht-e Lut, Iran
Iran's Lut Desert, is the hottest spot on Earth! A NASA satellite equipped with the MODIS was able to measured temperatures in this desert every year for a seven-year study. In five of those years ,2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2009, NASA determined Dasht-e Lut, Iran to be hottest spot on the planet! In 2005, a temperature of 159.3ºF (70.7º) was measured, the highest reading ever officially confirmed for a location on Earth.

After reading that hottest places list not even our record setting summer of 1994 with El Paso’s hottest 114º day seems not all that bad! El Paso will see another 14 or so more 100º days this summer. We do live in a desert and we are pretty lucky when it comes to our lower frequency of severe weather compared to the rest of the country. We can put up with and make it through the summer months by staying out of the mid and late day sun, drinking more than our normal amount of water and finding a good, air conditioned spot. After writing this “Weather Talk” I kind of want to jump into and stay in a swimming pool for awhile this afternoon! Hmm…

Chuck DeBroder, Chief Meteorologist
KTSM, NewsChannel 9, NBC, El Paso, TX

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