Military operations in arid regions of the world are becoming more and more regular. The atmospheric conditions in these regions impose severe restrictions on the performance of optical systems. In contrast to regions, where many airports are located and therefore the monitoring network of ground stations is very dense, only few ground measurements are available for arid regions. To a certain extent, measurements can be collected and generalized with large-scale measurement campaigns, but they are very cost-intensive and partly not achievable due to the political situation. Another possibility to close this gap of data is provided by satellite measurements. For various measurement parameters such as humidity, wind, solar radiation and aerosols, this works quite well with some limitations.
For this reason, models are a good complement to fill the lack of data in these regions. The study is concerned with identifying the turbulence in Western Sahara. The models used WRF (Weather Research and Forecasting Model) and ICON (Icosahedral Nonhydrostatic Model) have been sufficiently tested in different regions of the world. As there are no turbulence measurements in the Sahara, this is the first test to estimate the magnitude of the turbulence in order to discuss the need for an extensive measurement campaign. The models can be validated with previous trials of IOSB such as White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) in the USA, (New Mexico).