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Earth Space Science

Pictures of Kuril Islands Volcano From ISS 65

KindMind writes "The Daily Mail has cool pictures of the Sarychev Peak (Kuril Islands) volcano eruption taken from the ISS back on June 12. From the article: 'A chance recording by astronauts on the International Space Station has captured the moment a volcano explosively erupted, sending massive shockwaves through the atmosphere. Sarychev Peak, one of the most active volcanoes in the world, had been sitting quietly in the Kuril Island chain near Japan for 20 years, when it suddenly sprang to life on June 12. Fortuitously, the International Space Station was flying overhead at the time, and managed to capture this spectacular image of the ash-cloud tearing through the atmosphere, sending clouds scattering in its wake in a perfect circle.'"
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Pictures of Kuril Islands Volcano From ISS

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  • Well, from TFA "The extraordinary image was captured by the crew of the International Space Station 220 miles above a remote Russian island in the North Pacific."
    Not sure if Japan moved, or if Russia is trying to take over territory. :)
    Disclaimer: I did not look for a map to find the location.
    • Re: (Score:1, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Disclaimer: I did not look for a map to find the location.

      Too bad there wasn't one two-fifth the way down the page.

    • Sorry, that should have been TFS. letsgetlost tag in summary?
    • by dwye ( 1127395 )
      > Not sure if Japan moved, or if Russia is trying to take over territory. :)

      Russia already took it over, after WWII. OTOH, that is territory that Imperial Russia lost in the Russo-Japanese War, so it ends up a wash.

  • Is that a big frozen fish?
  • Pfft. (Score:1, Offtopic)

    by dmomo ( 256005 )

    Video or it didn't happen.

  • by eldavojohn ( 898314 ) * <eldavojohnNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @10:57PM (#28462281) Journal
    The original NASA story is here [nasa.gov] with large desktop background sized images [nasa.gov]. If you don't visit the weekly top ten site [nasa.gov], you really should. Some of those images are breathtaking. Check out the thunderstorm anvil [nasa.gov] over Africa.
    • by squoozer ( 730327 ) on Thursday June 25, 2009 @04:55AM (#28464141)

      Thanks for the link some of those pictures are amazing. Being a UKian I was quite interested in the picture of London at night [nasa.gov] (shame it's a little blurred). I downloaded the largest version of the image though (about 1.9mb) and noticed something strange. There are a surprisingly large number of green dots and a few blue dots. What I'm wondering is: are the green dots traffic lights and the blue emergency services?

      I could maybe believe that the blue lights are emergency vehicles since they will typically have an uninterrupted path to the camera but traffic lights almost always have a cover which I would have thought would make them hard to spot from above. Perhaps they are just artefacts of low light photography. I'd be interested to know though.

      • Interesting. I see what you're talking about. I think the green spots could be lens flares [wikipedia.org] from the bright area in the middle. If they're traffic lights, isn't it a bit strange that they're all green everywhere with no red in sight? Note that most of the green dots are not uniform, and have some shading. Also note that the farther 'north' you go on the image, the larger and more blurred they are.
        • I hadn't considered lens flare as a cause but having said that it doesn't look like any lens flare I've ever seen. I was wondering if it might be a form of chromatic aberration although that normally seems to result in a blue / purple edge to items. I suspect the camera they are using in the IIS is somewhat special though and it could have a weakness that causes it to record very bright tiny white points as green (e.g. the point covers less than one whole pixel and preferentially activates green). Of course

          • I recently took some long exposure night shots that had bright point-source lights in them with a Canon 70-300mm telephoto lens and got similar lens flares (greenish and lunate-shaped).

            They might be Bokeh [wikipedia.org]. I'd never heard of them before. Also wikipedia says that Anti-reflactive coatings [wikipedia.org] can create strange effects, as you said.

            In any case, I think they're artifacts and not actual 'stuff'. As for the blue ones - those might be the cops. 8-)

    • Stunning photos! Thanks for the links!
    • Great weekly pictures. Thanks for the link.

  • by Kenja ( 541830 ) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @11:17PM (#28462413)
    Of course NASA will deny everything.
  • Almost atomic (Score:5, Interesting)

    by timpdx ( 1473923 ) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @11:33PM (#28462521)
    Almost exactly what an atomic detonation would look like from space, even down to the clouds being pushed aside and the "pileus cloud" that you see above atomic blasts from years ago.
  • All I can say is wow, that's cool.
  • Are those the same Kuril Islands that are source of the territorial dispute [wikipedia.org] between Russia and Japan. Maybe after that volcano there is a chance Russia and Japan will finally sign a peace agreement - who needs those islands anyways.

    OutputLogic [outputlogic.com]
    • by belmolis ( 702863 ) <{billposer} {at} {alum.mit.edu}> on Thursday June 25, 2009 @01:58AM (#28463257) Homepage

      Not exactly. Japan claims only the "Southern Kuriles" that is, from Iturup (Japanese Etorofu) southward, as per the Japanese-Russian Treaty of 1855. The Soviet Union attacked Japan at the very end of WWII and occupied all of the Kuriles. Japan is clearly in the right in that the Soviet Union had no legal claim to the Southern Kuriles. Basically, the current Russian occupation was a gift of Japanese territory from Roosevelt and Churchill to Stalin. The island on which the volcano is located, Matua, is in the Northern Kuriles and is not claimed by Japan.

    • Don't know about these islands but most of those small island that Japan is fighting to keep are done so for fishing rights. If you have islands spread around you control the fishing rights between the islands, you loose the island and it one on the edge you just lost alot of fishing rights.
  • ...how I envy those people.
  • by florescent_beige ( 608235 ) on Thursday June 25, 2009 @12:51AM (#28462917) Journal
    Could also be a picture of what happens when I try to talk to a woman in a bar.
  • Seriously, how many cow-burps and -farts was this eruption equivalent to, as far as "global warming" is concerned? People seem to seriously engage in breeding cows, that produce less methane [telegraph.co.uk]. If a volcano can negate the benefits of such research for decades in a single eruption, perhaps there is no point in doing it — better concentrate on eruption-prevention...

  • by Anonymous Coward

    sending clouds scattering in its wake in a perfect circle

    clouds being pushed aside

    The circular hole in the stratus cloud deck is pretty cool, but I think it's not caused by the detonation pushing clouds away. Unlike a firecracker or grenade explosion, the amount of gas released is tiny compared to the amount of air heated by the blast. The clear-sky circle isn't caused by air moving outward *away* from the volcano, but rather down, *toward* it.

    What goes up must come down. The volcano heats air near it, c

  • The first two images in the story are exactly the same, just rotated on a diagonal line going from the lower left corner to the upper right corner. So much for "the eruption continues unabated"!
  • sending clouds scattering in its wake in a perfect circle

    clouds being pushed aside

    As I see it, the clouds aren't being "blasted away" by any kind of shock wave or gas flowing outward from the volcano. Unlike a firecracker or grenade, the amount gas released by a big eruption is tiny compared to the amount of air heated by it.

    As air is heated by the volcano, it rises. But if air is flowing up away from the volcano, air a further away from the volcano must be sinking to compensate.

    You may know how clouds fo

  • Ha ! Who's going to claim now that the government aren't really monitoring my every move with their high flying satellites, mole machines and robotic cuckoos.

    'Just happened to be in the the right place' to film this eruption, pull the other one !

  • It's the only way to be sure.

"The number of Unix installations has grown to 10, with more expected." -- The Unix Programmer's Manual, 2nd Edition, June, 1972