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A Russian volcano pokes through the clouds


A highly active volcano floats in a sea of white clouds in this satellite photo.


The Shiveluch volcano on the Kamchatka Peninsula in far eastern Russia.
The Klyuchevskoi volcano on the Kamchatka Peninsula in far eastern Russia.
NASA/METI/AIST/Japan Space Systems, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team

Klyuchevskoi, one of the world's most active volcanoes, is seen poking through above a solid cloud deck, with an ash plume streaming to the west. Located on the Kamchatka Peninsula in far eastern Russia, it is one of many active volcanoes on the Peninsula. Nearby, to the south, the smaller Bezymianny volcano can be seem with a small steam plume coming from its summit. The image was acquired Aug. 20, 2017, covers an area of 12 by 14 miles (19.5 by 22.7 kilometers), and is located at 56.1 degrees north, 160.6 degrees east.

With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER images Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet. ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched Dec. 18, 1999, on Terra. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and data products.

The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER provides scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping and monitoring of dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats; monitoring potentially active volcanoes; identifying crop stress; determining cloud morphology and physical properties; wetlands evaluation; thermal pollution monitoring; coral reef degradation; surface temperature mapping of soils and geology; and measuring surface heat balance.

Curated content from the editorial staff at Cosmos Magazine.
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