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Ash Plume from Klyuchevskaya Volcano

Ash Plume from Klyuchevskaya Volcano

On January 27, 2009, the Klyuchevskaya Volcano on Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula released a continuous plume of ash and steam, according to the U.S. Air Force Weather Agency. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this image of the volcano the same day.

In this image, gray-brown volcanic ash stains the snowy surface, especially east of the volcano. A fresh plume blows away from the volcano’s summit, toward the east-northeast, and casts a shadow on the land surface immediately north of the plume.

Klyuchevskaya (also Klyuchevskoy or Kliuchevskoi) is the highest volcano on the Kamchatka Peninsula, and it ranks among the peninsula’s most active. It is a steep-sloped, symmetrical stratovolcano, composed of alternating layers of hardened lava, solidified ash, and rocks left over from earlier eruptions. Since the late seventeenth century, eruptions have occurred mostly at the summit crater, but also from craters on the volcano’s flanks.

NASA image by Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Caption by Michon Scott.