Iceland Volcano Ash Plume Electrified
2010-05-28 0:00

From: LiveScience.com



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



Related Articles
Electric Clouds
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

Baby born still INSIDE his amniotic sac is hailed a ‘medical miracle’ by doctors [Video]
2015-02-27 22:46
What an incredible miracle… Not only was the little boy three months early – he was born inside his amniotic sac. I’ve never heard of this happening before. If you look at the picture, you can see him clearly with his little arms and legs curled up. He was still being given oxygen by his mom until the sac was ...
California Infant Dies after 8 Vaccines, Family Gets Him Back from Hospital Cremated
2015-02-27 21:55
Parents in California are distraught after losing their infant son after being vaccinated. He died in his sleep and was taken to the hospital already deceased. Hospital staff ruled his death as sudden infant death syndrome. The couple was told an autopsy was required to be performed on their son. After returning home, waiting to get an update, they never received ...
DNA: Data-storage for eternity
2015-02-27 20:57
How can we preserve our knowledge today for the next millennia? ETH researchers have found a way to store information in the form of DNA, preserving it for nearly an eternity. Scrolls thousands of years old provide us with a glimpse into long-forgotten cultures and the knowledge of our ancestors. In this digital era, in contrast, a large part of our ...
Hypercleanliness is making us sick - Children develop allergies and eczema
2015-02-27 20:31
Could using a dishwashing machine increase the chances your child will develop allergies? That's what some provocative new research suggests — but don't tear out your machine just yet. The study involved 1,029 Swedish children (ages 7 or 8) and found that those whose parents said they mostly wash the family's dishes by hand were significantly less likely to develop eczema, ...
USDA: Can’t We Just Scan Food to See GMO Ingredients?
2015-02-27 20:26
Tom Vislack, secretary of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) told Congress that labeling genetically modified foods (GMOs) could be unnecessary if customers “use their phones to scan special bar codes or other symbols on food packages in the grocery store” to determine the ingredients and identify GMOs. Vislack said: “Industry could solve that issue in a heartbeat.” This idea “could have ...
More News »