Iceland Volcano Ash Plume Electrified
The billowing plume of ash that spewed from Iceland’s Eyjafjallajakull volcano and spread across Europe in April carried with it a significant electric charge, new research reveals.
Eyjafjallajakull first began pumping volcanic ash into the atmosphere on March 20. The spread of the plume across Europe hampered air travel for days and created fiery red sunsets.
© Anthony Ayiomamitis
Shortly after the volcano’s active eruption phase began in mid-April, the U.K. Met Office contacted Joseph Ulanowski from the Science and Technology Research Institute at the University of Hertfordshire, who last year, together with Giles Harrison from the Department of Meteorology at the University of Reading, had developed a specialized weather balloon that could assess the location and composition of the volcanic ash clouds.
The plume of ash and steam rising from the Eyjafjallajökull volcano reached 17,000 to 20,000 feet (5 to 6 kilometers) into the atmosphere on May 10, 2010, when the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this image. Credit: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC
Their balloons, originally designed and used to study the properties of desert dust clouds, are able to assess not only the size of particles suspended in the atmosphere - such as volcanic ash - but also the electric charge present, which can be important to know when evaluating a plume’s threat to aircraft.
"Detailed volcanic plume properties, such as the particle size, concentration and charge found by our weather balloon are important in predicting the impact on aircraft," Harrison said.
Lightning seen in the plume from Eyjafjallajakull is also attributed to electrical charges generated in the plume from particles rubbing together.
Measurements made last year with the balloons in Kuwait and off the west coast of Africa showed clearly that desert dust could become strongly electrified aloft.
When particles in the atmosphere become charged, it can change how effectively they grow in size or are washed out by rain.
When Eyjafjallajakull erupted, a team of scientists was quickly assembled and travelled to a site near Stranraer in Scotland where a balloon was launched. The balloon detected a layer of volcanic ash about 2.5 miles (4 kilometers) above the ground, about 1,970 feet (600 meters) thick, with very abrupt upper and lower edges.
The charge detected by the balloon was deep inside the plume, not along the edges. This is contradictory to what would be expected from the normal weather-induced charging of cloud layers.
From their measurements, the researchers conclude that neither energy from the volcanic source - more than 745 miles (1,200 km) away - nor weather conditions could have been responsible for the position of the charge found by the balloon.
Article from: LiveScience.com
Also tune into:
Donald E. Scott - The Electric Sky
Wallace Thornhill - The Electric Universe
Wallace Thornhill - Proto-Saturn, The Purple Dawn of Creation & Our Strange Solar System
Rens van der Sluijs - Plasma Mythology & The Axis Mundi
Freeman - Space War, the Norway Spiral, CARE, CERN, HAARP & EISCAT
Get your electricity from outer space
Material bends, stretches and conducts electricity?
NASA provides "Explanation" of China Earthquake: "Electrical disturbances on edge of atmosphere & impending quakes"
Shooting clouds with lasers triggers electrical discharge
Space Aliens Blamed For the Electric Universe?
The Electric Universe (Book)
Amazing Photos from the Volcano in Iceland - Eyjafjallajokull
Iceland volcano sends more ash as knee-jerk reaction chaos criticized (Video)
Volcano ash forces airspace shutdown
Latest News from our Front Page
Galaxy Poll: 86 per cent of Australians want childhood vaccination to be compulsory?
Australians want Prime Minister Tony Abbott to make childhood vaccination compulsory and close loopholes that allow vaccine refusers to put all children at risk.
An exclusive national Galaxy poll commissioned by The Sunday Telegraph has revealed overwhelming support to ensure every child is vaccinated.
The highest support for compulsory jabs is in South Australia, where 90 per cent support the call.
The poll ...
Eye in the sky: Local police now using drones to spy on citizens
The Harris County Precinct 1 Constable's Office is doing something that no other agency in Harris County is believed to have done yet: Use drones to help fight crime.
It's an eye in the sky for law enforcement, without giving up the element of surprise.
"It could absolutely save lives," says Constable Alan Rosen.
Rosen says the agency's two new $1,200 drones, which ...
New Zealander of the Year: refuse vaccines, lose money
Following in the footsteps of Australia, 2014 New Zealander of the Year, Dr. Lance Oâ€™Sullivan, wants to punish people who donâ€™t get vaccinated.
The New Zealand Herald (4/15) reports:
â€œA leading New Zealand doctor has called on the Government to follow Australiaâ€™s example to cut child welfare payments to families who do not vaccinate their children, saying the policy would help protect ...
Iris Scanner Identifies a Person 40 Feet Away
Police traffic stops are in the news again, tragically, sparking a new round of discussion on whether and how to outfit police with cameras and other technology.
For several years now, researchers at Carnegie Mellon Universityâ€™s CyLab Biometrics Center have been testing an iris recognition system that can be used to identify subjects at a range of up to 40 feet.
Yes, You Can Catch Insanity
One day in March 2010, Isak McCune started clearing his throat with a forceful, violent sound. The New Hampshire toddler was 3, with a Beatles mop of blonde hair and a cuddly, loving personality. His parents had no idea where the guttural tic came from. They figured it was springtime allergies.
Soon after, Isak began to scream as if in pain ...
|More News » |