Published on 3 August 2021
The Eastern Mediterranean basin is currently going through an intense heatwave, with Greece facing some of the most extreme temperatures. Mercury has peaked around 42°C at noon in Peléponissos and further south on the island of Crete. On the same day, this image was acquired, the air temperature reached 46.3°C in Makrakomi, Greece. Along the coast of Turkey, the temperature exceeded 44°C.
The high air temperatures are reflected in high land surface temperature values often surpassing 53°C, as highlighted in this Copernicus Sentinel-3 image. (NB: the LST is the temperature of the soil and should not be confused with the air temperature).
The image shows the Land Surface Temperature (LST) as measured by one of the Copernicus Sentinel-3 satellites on 2 August 2021 over mainland Greece and the archipelagos, and over Western Turkey.
The extreme temperatures triggered severe fires throughout the area. The Copernicus EMS Rapid Mapping module was activated for some of the fires in Greece, while for Turkey, the EU Civil Protection Mechanism was activated and waterbombers were sent by Spain and Croatia.
The Copernicus Sentinel-3 mission is composed of two twin satellites (Sentinel-3A and Sentinel-3B) both equipped with the Sea and Land Surface Temperature Radiometer, an instrument whose main objective is to provide Sea and Land Surface Temperature (SST, LST).