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For the second consecutive summer, some of the hottest temperatures in Earth's recorded history have scorched Asia. The six hottest (undisputed) temperatures ever measured in Asia have all occurred in during the past two summers:
1) 53.5°C (128.3°F) at Moenjodaro, Pakistan on May 26, 2010
2) 53.3°C (127.9°F) at Mitrabah, Kuwait on August 3, 2011
3) 53.1°C (127.6°F) at Sulaibiya, Kuwait on June 15, 2010
4) 53.0°C (127.4°F) at Tallil, Iraq on August 3, 2011
4) 53.0°C (127.4°F) at Dehloran, Iran on July 28, 2011
4) 53.0°C (127.4°F) at Sibi, Pakistan, on May 26, 2010
Asia's official all-time hottest temperature is 54°C measured at Tirat Zvi, Israel on June 21, 1942. However, as explained by our weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, this record is under serious dispute. Weather records researchers Howard Rainford and Maximiliano Herrera discovered that the thermograph trace of the record had been mis-read as one degree higher than it actually was. Thus the 1942 temperature at Tirat Zvi was probably 53.0°C, tying it for the 4th hottest temperature measured in Asia. Furthermore, a temperature in excess of 54°C was measured in Mitribah, Kuwait in July 2010, but the temperature sensor was found to be faulty.
Last year, twenty nations set all-time heat
records. So far this year, there have been six such records set:
Kuwait recorded its hottest temperature on record on August 3, 2011, when the mercury hit 53.3°C (127.0°F) at Mitrabah. The previous record was 53.1°C in Sulaibiya on June 15, 2010. According to weather records researcher Maximiliano Herrera, who has been corresponding with representatives from the Kuwait Meteorological Center, the reading has been confirmed as authentic. The 53.3°C (127.0°F) at Mitrabah thus represents:
1) New official national record for Kuwait
2) Second highest (undisputed) temperature ever recorded in Asia
3) Highest temperature ever recorded in an Arabic country
4) Third hottest location in the planet together with Lake Havasu City, AZ (after Death Valley, CA and Moenjodaro, Pakistan)
5) A new world record for August
Iraq recorded its hottest temperature on record on August 3, 2011 in Tallil (Ali military airbase), when the mercury hit 53°C (127.4°F). The previous record was 52.3°C recorded at Diwanya FOB airbase a few days before.
Armenia recorded its hottest temperature on record on July 31 in Meghri, when the mercury hit 43.7°C (110.7°F). The previous record was 43.1°C in Meghri on July 17, 2005.
Iran recorded its hottest temperature in its history on July 28, 2011, when the mercury hit 53°C (127.4°F) at Dehloran. The previous previous record was set just one day earlier at Omidieh and Shoshtar, when the mercury hit 52.6°C (126.6°F).
Republic of the Congo set a new all-time extreme heat
record on March 8, 2011, when the temperature hit 39.2°C (102.6°F) at M'Pouya. Congo's previous all-time hottest temperature was 39.0°C (102.2°F) at Impfondo on May 14, 2005.
Russia had its hottest temperature on record at a regular synoptic reporting station on July 30, 2011, when the mercury hit 44.2°C (111.6°F) at Divnoe in Russia's Kalmykia Republic. Three hotter temperatures have been recorded at automated stations: 45.4°C in 2010 at a hydrological station at Utta, plus readings of 45°C at El'ton and 44.5°C at Verhjnky Baskunkak in August 1940.
No nations have set an all-time coldest temperature record this year, or did so in 2010.
Weather records researcher Maximiliano Herrera is the primary source of the weather records listed here; he maintains a comprehensive list of extreme temperature records for every nation in the world on his website.