Eruptions


Image courtesy of AVO/USGS by Game McGimsey

Following the provided script, Redoubt erupted again last night, producing a 32,000 foot / 10,000 meter ash column that prompted a new ash fall warning for the Kenai Peninsula area. Thus far, though, there have been few reports of major damage being caused by the ash fall. Alaska Air has yet to resume flights to Anchorage due to the ash, but will be reassessing as the day goes on. Since then, the seismicity has settled and we can wait for the next explosion. 2 PM Alaska time? Sounds good to me.

I want to point everyone to the great video montage created from the Hut webcam that Akira Shirakawa has posted for the 3/26 eruptions – again with the seismic record converted to sound. What is great is you can see the lahars coming down the volcano (bottom left and middle starting at ~1:00). There was a lot of cloudiness, but at the end you can see the results of the eruptions, including network of lahars that fill the valleys on the north flank starting from the Drift River glacier heading into the Drift River valley.

AVO has posted a lot of a new images, including two images of the eruption from space, one via a MODIS shot – in color – of the ash cloud mixed with other clouds and one via a weather satellite parked over equatorial Asia showing the ash column poking into the upper atmosphere. From earthbound observers (well, mostly if you include the Peninsula Airways pilot), they’ve added a multiple of ash cloud, volcano and regional damage shots including pictures of the ash coating the Crescent River valley (see above).

Comments

  1. #1 doug
    March 27, 2009

    Hi Erik,

    I’m very curious if the eruption yesterday, described as exceeding 60,000 ft, is at the level where the ash in the upper levels of the atmosphere at northern latitudes might produce detectable and lingering effects on weather and air temperature. Is there some sort of model or index used to predict this?

    thank you,

  2. #2 Erik - Eruptions
    March 27, 2009

    Doug – I think at this point, its hard to tell what, if any, effect this might have on the atmosphere. It really depends on how much sulfur dioxide and other aerosols were erupted and made it to the upper atmosphere. However, we might be lucky enough to experience some intense sunsets on the west coast of the U.S. One place to check for information of volcanic aerosols is the TOMS group at University of Maryland – Baltimore County.

  3. #3 Brian
    March 27, 2009

    The one thing about Redoubt that would make me doubt (sorry about the pun) that it would have any effect on the climate is the short duration of these eruptions. Remember, St. Helens erupted for 10 hours in 1980, and Chaiten erupted for quite a few hours last year. These short 10 minute eruptions, while impressive if they could be seen, probably just don’t have a lot of sulpher and aerosols to effect anything. Just my two cents worth.

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