On May 10, 2003, the Anatahan Volcano in the Northern Mariana Islands announced its presence with the eruption of a huge plume of volcanic ash that spread hundreds of miles across the Pacific Ocean. This is the first documented eruption of this volcano, which is on the island of the same name. The island is only 9 kilometers long and is made up of two volcanoes that are slowly coalescing. This image of the ash plume was captured on May 11, 2003, by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on the Terra satellite.The high-resolution image provided above is 500 meters per pixel. The MODIS Rapid Response System provides this image at MODIS? maximum spatial resolution of 250 meters.
Image courtesy Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC