The rising sun bathes the eastern half of Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula with light, casting long shadows in the west. The shadows highlight the plume of ash that continues to rise from the Klyuchevskaya Volcano. The largest and most active volcano on the peninsula, Klyuchevskaya has erupted regularly since its first recorded eruption in 1697. Its most recent activity began in mid-January 2005, and has not abated. Dark ash from the ongoing eruption dusts the snow in this image, acquired by the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA’s Terra satellite on March 12, 2005.
In addition to the large plume of ash visible in this image, the ongoing eruption has sent molten lava down the volcano’s northeast slope, where it is melting the Ehrman glacier. This activity may be responsible for the rivers of water that can be seen in the snow near the northeast base of the volcano.
NASA image created by Jesse Allen, Earth Observatory, using data provided courtesy of NASA/GSFC/MITI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team.