NASA's Aqua and Terra satellites fly around the world every day capturing images of weather, ice and land changes. Over the last three days these satellites have provided visible and infrared imagery of the ash plume from the Eyjafjallajökull volcano in Iceland.
Eyjafjallajökull is pronounced similar to "EYE-a-fyat-la-yu-goot," and it is still spewing ash into the atmosphere. Volcanic eruptions are important sources of gases, such as sulphur dioxide (SO2) and volcanic ash (aerosols) in the atmosphere.
The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer, also known as MODIS, is an instrument that flies aboard both NASA's Aqua and Terra satellites. MODIS captures daily visible and infrared earth imagery and has provided daily images of the volcanic plume. NASA’s MODIS instrument and the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument, both of which fly on Aqua, contain sulfur dioxide (SO2) absorption channels to enhance volcanic ash detection. These applications have significantly improved upon existing satellite-based multi-spectral techniques in identifying and tracking ash clouds and estimating their height.
On Saturday, April 17 at 13:20 UTC (9:20 a.m. EDT), Aqua captured a visible image of the ash plume so clearly that in the satellite image a viewer could see the billowing cloud spewing from the volcano and blowing almost due south before turning east over the Atlantic Ocean.
On Sunday, April 18 at 12:05 UTC (8:05 a.m. EDT), NASA's Terra satellite flew over the volcano and captured an image of the brown ash cloud mostly obscured by higher clouds. The brown plume was partly visible underneath the high clouds.
By Monday morning, April 19 at 12:50 UTC (8:50 a.m. EDT) the high clouds had cleared, and the brown line of spewed volcanic ash was visible once again blowing south, then turning east toward the United Kingdom.
The ash cloud basically consists of fine particles of pulverized rock. Volcanic ash is a rare but potentially catastrophic hazard to aviation. Encounters with volcanic ash while in flight can result in engine failure from particulate ingestion and viewing obstruction of the cockpit widescreen from etching by the acidic aerosols. Volcanic Ash Advisory Centers were established to monitor the air space in areas prone to eruptions and to issue volcanic ash warnings.
NASA works with other agencies on using satellite observations to aid in the detection and monitoring of aviation hazards caused by volcanic ash. For more on this NASA program, visit: http://science.larc.nasa.gov/asap/research-ash.html.
Eyjafjallajökull is one of Iceland's smaller glaciers, located north of Skógar. Skógar is a small Icelandic village with a population of roughly 25 located at the south of the glacier. Eyjafjallajökull lies west of another glacier called Mýrdalsjökull.
The MODIS Rapid Response System was developed to provide daily satellite images of the Earth's landmasses in near real time. True-color, photo-like imagery and false-color imagery are available within a few hours of being collected, making the system a valuable resource. The MODIS Rapid Response Team that generates the images is located at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.
Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
Rob Gutro | EurekAlert!
A promising target in the quest for a 1-million-year-old Antarctic ice core
24.05.2018 | University of Washington
Tropical Peat Swamps: Restoration of Endangered Carbon Reservoirs
24.05.2018 | Leibniz-Zentrum für Marine Tropenforschung (ZMT)
A research team led by physicists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has developed molecular nanoswitches that can be toggled between two structurally different states using an applied voltage. They can serve as the basis for a pioneering class of devices that could replace silicon-based components with organic molecules.
The development of new electronic technologies drives the incessant reduction of functional component sizes. In the context of an international collaborative...
At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.
At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...
There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?
At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...
So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics
Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...
The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...
02.05.2018 | Event News
13.04.2018 | Event News
12.04.2018 | Event News
24.05.2018 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation
24.05.2018 | Medical Engineering
24.05.2018 | Physics and Astronomy