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Activity at Kizimen Volcano

Activity at Kizimen Volcano

On December 31, 2010, Kizimen continued releasing plumes of ash and steam. The U.S. Air Force Weather Agency reported ongoing activity as the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite showed a plume from the volcano blowing southward over the Kamchatka Peninsula.

The red outline at the volcano’s summit is a hotspot where MODIS has detected unusually high surface temperatures. Kizimen’s plume blows toward the southwest and southeast, likely the result of changing winds. In the southeast, the plume appears as a faint gray-beige veil over the ocean. An expanse of snow west of the volcano looks gray, perhaps the result of a recent ashfall from Kizimen.

Rising to an altitude of 2,376 meters (7,795 feet), Kizimen Volcano is a stratovolcano composed of hardened lava, solifidied ash, and rocks ejected by earlier eruptions. The volcano has experienced multiple periods of long-term growth, and lava domes overlap at the summit.

NASA image courtesy Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC. Caption by Michon Scott.