Eruptions

The NASA Earth Observatory has been dazzling us with images from the Eyjafjallajökull eruption for months – but they have been dazzling us with volcanoes images for years! Here are two more images for those of you who love seeing volcanoes from above:

Cleveland, Alaska
As I mentioned earlier this week, Cleveland volcano likely had a small eruption over the weekend producing a small ash cloud. Cleveland is already known as an extremely picturesque volcano, both from the ground for its highly conical shape – a textbook andesitic stratocone – and from space. This new June 1 image is from almost directly over the volcano, showing the radial symmetry of the volcano formed by lava and debris flows cascading down the slopes of the volcano. A few new debris flows are observed on the east side of the edifice and a weak grey plume is seen drifting off the southwest with ash fall showing that the plume must have been bigger at some point over the weekend.

Nyiragongo, Dem. Republic of the Congo
On the other side of the planet, Nyiragongo – an alkalic shield volcano that erupts basalts – was captured on May 28 with a white, wispy plume coming from the crater pit. The crater area is a series of collapse craters that periodically fill with lava, sometimes spilling over and sending lava flows down the flanks of the volcano. You can see some younger lava flows on the northwest flanks of the volcano and just above the Shaheru Crater, a flank vent on the edifice. The rapid vegetation growth and weathering hide lava flows from view quickly, unlike volcanoes in the high Andes of Chile which can preserve lava flows in “showroom” conditions for thousands (to millions?) of years.

Both of these images remind us how satellite images have vastly improved our ability to monitor remote volcanoes all around the world – and how quickly we can share that information worldwide.

Comments

  1. #1 Zander
    June 4, 2010

    New technology that could minimise future disruption to planes from volcanic ash has been unveiled by budget airline easyJet.

    The carrier will be the first airline to trial a new “weather radar for ash” system called AVOID (Airborne Volcanic Object Identifier and Detector).

    The system involves placing infrared technology onto an aircraft to supply images to both the pilots and an airline’s flight control centre.

    These images will enable pilots to see an ash cloud up to 62 miles ahead of the aircraft and at altitudes between 5,000ft and 50,000ft.

    This will allow pilots to make adjustments to the plane’s flight path to avoid any ash cloud.

    Millions of passengers had their travel plans wrecked when airlines had to scrap thousands of flights in recent weeks due to the Icelandic volcanic ash problem.

  2. #2 Gordon
    June 4, 2010
  3. #3 birdseyeUSA
    June 4, 2010

    fabulous photo exhibit of the Icelandic eruption(s) at http://myndlist.is/index.php?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=119

  4. #4 Ian
    June 4, 2010

    I have been reading and following this blog since the first eruption of Ejaf.

    This blog along with Jeff Masters blog, which led me here, are my daily must hit places on the internet.

    Thank You Eric for such a great place to be educated and informed, this is such an interesting place.

    Thanks also to the many contributors.

  5. #5 Jón Frímann
    June 4, 2010

    It is most likely that the eruption in Eyjafjallajökull is re-starting, given the signals that are appearing on the tremor plots on the IMO web page.

    I am still waiting for a confirmation on this.

  6. #6 Carla - Seattle
    June 4, 2010

    Jón, glad to see you posted a comment already. I noticed it’s been seismically quiet for the past twelve hours, so I checked the tremor plots and wow, sharp upticks! Is the helicorder activity related this, or just wind?

  7. #7 Dagmar
    June 4, 2010
  8. #8 thor
    June 4, 2010

    Jon, what is happening under Eyjafjöll??

    any activity to give any idea??

  9. #9 Chris, Reykjavik
    June 4, 2010

    Unfortunately the webcams are not useful due to too much wind and ash in the air.

  10. #10 Adrian,Dorset, UK
    June 4, 2010

    Hi to all,

    Cloud is blowing left to right on Thoro cam. Occasionaly the cloud drops and what looks to be a large plume appears,top right corner of screen !

  11. #11 Carla - Seattle
    June 4, 2010

    Adrian, I’m seeing the same thing. It sure looks like a grey plume but I won’t believe it till view clears up.

  12. #12 La Kat
    June 4, 2010

    @ Jon Frimann no. 5

    The uptick STARTED at the hvo and hau seismic stations when the other three listed for Eyjafjallajokull were still at base levels – wonder if this is in any way significant? Any ideas on that? (They are all showing high activity now.)

    There has also been some more earthquake activity reported for Myrdalsjokull in last 48 hours: http://en.vedur.is/earthquakes-and-volcanism/earthquakes/myrdalsjokull/

  13. #13 Jón Frímann
    June 4, 2010

    @La Kat, It is hard to say why that is. But it might just be a simple as a distance factor.

    The tremor continues to increase at a fast rate.

  14. Let’s hope it’s going to be less violent than last time … and for all the volcano webcam addicts here, that the weather will be better!

  15. #16 Jón Frímann
    June 4, 2010

    @Boris Behncke, Is there a chance that this might be lava flow ? So far there has not been any plume. But visibility is quite bad at the moment, so I am waiting for some view of Eyjafjallajökull.

    We should know soon enough what is going on in Eyjafjallajökull given the current rising tremors.

  16. #17 Carl
    June 4, 2010

    But there is still not so many earthquakes, just 4 of them and they are relatively minor to, all of them around 1 in magnitude. All of them are rather shallow, between 1 and 7.5 kilometres in depth. I guess it would be more power and higher frequency than that if new magma was on the way up. And I also suspect they would start at greater depth.
    Boris, you’r take on this?

    Also, it doesn’t look like the weather would be better for us webcamoholics… :-(

  17. #18 Passerby
    June 4, 2010

    Meh. Vertical tremor plots are still very low amplitude in comparison with earlier aggressive eruption phase. The one interesting item is the comment on fumerolic noise observed yesterday during a crater recon by IES, noted in their Activity Update for June 4, posted at noon.

    ‘In the crater area solfatara is steaming out with a noise like that from a hight temperature geothermal drill hole.’

    Very high geothermal / pore pressure. Magma may have already moved up (repeated swarms from depth to shallows, last week). However, there is insufficicent MAR-thin lithosphere pressure to actively expel magma, but maybe enough to bring it from the depths to heat the glacier subsurface and produce the occasionally ‘hot’ (thermal webcam) steam-laden plume observed on Mulakot and Por webcams and reported by IES and Eruptions readers, over the past week.

  18. #19 La Kat
    June 4, 2010

    Low-amplitude is associated with “filling” ( possible re-filling in this case?), isn’t it?

  19. #20 Jón Frímann
    June 4, 2010

    The tremor plot have started to fall again already. It might be a question if this was a dike pushing inside Eyjafjallajökull that did not reach the surface. But that however remains a question at the moment.

    It might be dropping for a moment now, before it picks up again. That has happened many times before in the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull.

  20. #21 La Kat
    June 4, 2010

    @ Jon Frimann no.20

    Re: Magmatic dike resonance

    Jon this article may be of interest to you.

    You might like to analyse your own private helicorder readings in light of this piece of research by a group of Japanese scientists:

    http://sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/299/5615/2058

  21. #22 Lavendel, Switzerland
    June 4, 2010

    Ow… that’s not fair…
    I’m going away for a week without access to internet ( hiking in the mountains). And just now something is happening/starts to happen (??) at Eya.

    ( of course I’m happy to have a short holliday, but…)

  22. #23 Holger, N California
    June 4, 2010

    @Lavendel #22 & everyone

    I guess it remains to be seen, if and when Eyjafjallajökull is going to resume its (fascinating) eruptive activity.

    For the moment the tremors have died down again:

    http://hraun.vedur.is/ja/Katla2009/stodvaplott.html#googtrans/auto/en

    If I had the choice of watching my favorite volcano erupt on various webcams or going to go hiking in the Swiss mountains, I’d chose the latter for sure….

  23. #24 Lavendel, Switzerland
    June 4, 2010

    #23 Holger,
    don’t worry, I won’t stay at home for the small chance that she will do anything *s*
    I’m to happy to go away for a couple of days with my partner. Too little time together…
    But it would be ironic if she blew her top (again) wenn I can’t watch. ( after all the waiting *s*)

  24. #25 Holger, N California
    June 4, 2010

    @Lavendel #24

    Of course, we’ll keep posting on this forum and you’ll be able to go back and read about each and every ‘burp’ Eyjafjallajökull may emit during your absence…

    Enjoy the mountains, I’m envious…

  25. #26 birdseyeUSA
    June 4, 2010

    that will be true for me as well, we will be driving most of the day tomorrow…but tonite I am ‘all ears..’

  26. #27 birdseyeUSA
    June 4, 2010

    from Google trans and mbl.is Fréttir – (someone in Iceland, a better translation??)
    Increased gosóri has been Eyjafjallajökull in Eyjafjallajökull and has seen black Mocha from the mountain according to his service.

  27. #28 Reynir, .is
    June 4, 2010

    “There has been increased volcanic tremor in Eyjaf. and a black plume has been spotted, according to the IMO.”

  28. #29 Reynir, .is
    June 4, 2010

    Excerpts from a later bulletin: Activity increased sharply just after 17 UT, fell around 19:50 UT, then rose again just before 21 UT. Geoscientist Gunnar B. Guðmarsson: ” It may have been magma, I just can’t say for sure; but it looks like steam blasts or increased gas flow with bangs and ruckus; something explosive, anyway.” There have been no deep quakes, and no displacement on the GPS recorders.

    Gunnar says it’s possible that the black plume comes from the thick deposits around the crater being tossed up by the explosions. “It’s more than it has been, but it’s not from deep down; it’s surface activity. Records from the 1821-1823 eruption describe puffs like this happening.”

  29. #30 Reynir, .is
    June 4, 2010

    As an aside, dust levels in Reykjavík (wind-blown ash) passed 600µg/m³ today. In Hvolsvöllur, the dust levels were over 3mg/m³. That’s what… 3000kg/km³ of air?

    And for all that, there’s still more than plenty enough for ash salesfolk to ply their trade for a long time.

  30. #31 Chris, Reykjavik
    June 4, 2010

    Is this an ash plume which is blown away, what we can see on the Katla webcam (http://www.ruv.is/katla/)?

    @Reynir: Walking outside today was not funny. Its like walking through a very dusty area.

  31. #32 Reynir, .is
    June 4, 2010

    I can imagine. Late summers can be very dusty here on the east side.

  32. #33 Reynir, .is
    June 4, 2010

    http://www.loft.rvk.is/ – This page (no English section) has data from air quality sensors in Reykjavík.

    kort.vista.is/ – Pointers to two more sensors, one in Vík in Mýrdalur, the other at Heimaland, close to Lady E.

  33. #34 Reynir, .is
    June 4, 2010

    Right bad seeing on the Hvolsvöllur camera. I think that the hill (and farm) in the centre of the image is named Moshvoll (Moss Hill).

    Oh, well, there’s always Mt. Benten, alt. 6100mm. Turns out Japan’s smallest natural mountain has its own camera – and shrine. http://www.bentenyama.com

  34. #35 Renato I Silveira
    June 4, 2010

    Evening, everyone!
    Just coming back from a long working day and the first thing I noticed on IMO site was the very slow number of EQs. When I entered the blog you people are telling me she’s back to action?
    Well, I’m watching on Þórólfsfell cam now, and it doesn’t look that different from the last days. There won’t be night darkness so we could see if any lava is showing.
    I’ll be right here, anyway.

  35. #36 Renato I Silveira
    June 4, 2010

    Beautiful plume refracting light on Turrialba cam now, here, for the lurkers:
    http://www.ovsicori.una.ac.cr/videoturri.html

  36. #37 Renato I Silveira
    June 4, 2010

    And activity in Tungurahua still very high. See beautiful pic!
    http://www.prensaescrita.com/adiario.php?codigo=AME&pagina=http://www.hoy.com.ec

  37. #38 Raving
    June 4, 2010
  38. #39 Renato I Silveira
    June 4, 2010

    And video (spanish)showing “Mama Tungurahua” with astonishing cannon shots from the mountain and interview saying there’s possibility of “huge pyroclastic flows” at:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SEj80bmXIwM&feature=player_embedded

  39. #40 birdseyeUSA
    June 4, 2010

    Hmm a lot of interesting post tonite – have been in and out of the house all day, so no time for ‘net’ trawling :0

    @Renato 39, ‘Mama T.’ is indeed impressive, I wish there were more of the various videos (like from rúv.is) posted to You-Tube… I can always get the embedded ones to run.

  40. #41 birdseyeUSA
    June 4, 2010

    umm – does it look to anyone as though the ‘lagoon’ under Gigjökull (Thoro cam) is starting to hold water again?? Maybe a trick of the light, but it looks different.

  41. #42 shelly
    June 4, 2010

    I was thinking that too birdseye.. I do wish the vodafone cams would get back online..

  42. #43 Renato I Silveira
    June 4, 2010

    Looking at Múlakot cam, looks like plume is higher…
    http://www.simnet.is/jonfr500/earthquake/vefmyndeyjafjalmulaen.html

  43. #44 Princess Frito
    June 4, 2010

    @41 Yes, and it also seems as if the cam’s fuzzy factor has worsened
    @, 42 Yes, me too *sigh*
    @, 43 Yes, on that cam it does, but doesn’t reconcile as that high on the Thorolss cam

  44. #45 Dan, Florida
    June 4, 2010

    I see things were a little busy today. I was out chasing tarballs.
    Interesting spikes earlier on the tremor plots. No earthquakes though. But she refuses to give up doesn’t she.

    pictures and video of tar on the beach here
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/8388935@N04/

  45. #46 Raving
    June 4, 2010

    Very peculiar tremor plot! http://i48.tinypic.com/j64tqc.png

    It says “digital” to me. Digital as in exactly one thing is happening. As in one flow or resonance in a single harmonic cavity.

  46. #47 birdseyeUSA
    June 4, 2010

    @Dan45… eeew..sorry….
    @46 Raving – I just looked at the ‘short term’ plots, & have no idea how to read them but yes, different.
    Jón???

    Off to sleep now, but I’ll check in before we hit the road tomorrow. Blessings on all…

  47. #48 Jón Frímann
    June 4, 2010

    The small eruption earlier tonight has been confirmed. But they also spoke about this being a shallow tremor, whatever that is.

    But there is more to this then seems according to news. Given how the tremor have risen and dropped over the last few hours. I would say that this is a slow re-start of the eruption. Since something is pushing the magma upwards at the moment, even if it goes a bit slowly and the pressure is not high to create huge explosions.

    http://www.vedur.is/skjalftar-og-eldgos/frodleikur/greinar/nr/1863

  48. #49 Renato I Silveira
    June 4, 2010

    This link to Iceland’s RUV was posted by Mike Richards on the other thread last morning. It has a report from the crater rim of Eyjafjallajökull – it’s in Icelandic. Wish I could understand what they say.

    http://dagskra.ruv.is/sjonvarpid/4472205/2010/06/03/0/

    Posted by: Mike Richards | June 3, 2010 9:39 PM

  49. #51 Renato I Silveira
    June 4, 2010

    #44 Your Highness: Plume is now visible on Thórolsféll cam too.

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