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Volcanic eruption as seen from ISS [video]

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It was a stroke of incredible luck that the International Space Station just happened to be in the neighborhood when the Sarychev Volcano decided to blow its top, allowing the crew to gain incredible footage of the geological event.

A fortuitous orbit of the International Space Station allowed the astronauts this striking view of Sarychev Volcano (Kuril Islands, northeast of Japan) in an early stage of eruption on June 12, 2009. Sarychev Peak is one of the most active volcanoes in the Kuril Island chain, and it is located on the northwestern end of Matua Island. Prior to June 12, the last explosive eruption occurred in 1989, with eruptions in 1986, 1976, 1954, and 1946 also producing lava flows. Ash from the multi-day eruption has been detected 2,407 kilometers east-southeast and 926 kilometers west-northwest of the volcano, and commercial airline flights are being diverted away from the region to minimize the danger of engine failures from ash intake.

Full story at NASA.

Getting the ET’s-eye view.

Photo credit: NASA

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