Saturday, April 17, 2010

NASA's satellite images show Icelandic volcanic ash moving into Germany


Images taken by NASA’s scientific research satellite have revealed that Iceland’s Eyjafjallajokull volcano ash clouds are now moving into Germany.

NASA’s Terra satellite flew over the volcano on Friday and the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer, or MODIS instrument aboard Terra captured a visible image of Eyjafjallajokull’s ash plume over England and the Netherlands, stretching into Germany.

Meanwhile, the ban on flights in British airspace has been extended until at least 7pm due to the threat posed by the volcanic ash.

Restrictions have also been reapplied to Manchester, Liverpool and Blackpool airports, having briefly been lifted.

A Texas University researcher, who has explored Icelandic volcanoes for the past 25 years, said that if history is any indication, the erupting volcano and its immense ash plume could intensify.

Jay Miller, a research scientist in the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program who has made numerous trips to the region and studied there, said the ash produced from Icelandic volcanoes can be a real killer.

“What happens is that the magma from the volcano is around 1,200 degrees and it hits the water there, which is near freezing. What is produced is a fine ash that actually has small pieces of glass in it, and it can very easily clog up a jet engine. If you were to inhale that ash, it would literally tear up your lungs,” Miller said.


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