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Posts Tagged ‘Eyjafjallajökull volcano’

Eyjafjallajökull Volcano: Unending Eruption

Posted by feww on May 13, 2010

Eyjafjallajökull Following Chaitén Scenario?

Chaitén Erupted for Many Months, Stopped, and Erupted Again

Eyjafjallajökull eruption continues unabated, Icelandic Met Office (IMO) said. The ash plume reduced slightly and changed direction heading ESE.

The ash cloud has wreaked havoc in parts of southern Europe, disrupting flights in as far south as Portugal, Spain and Morocco in recent days, according to media reports.

Reaching a height of four to 5 kilometers (13,000-17,000 feet), the plume of ash from Iceland’s Eyjafjallajökull volcano rises above a sea of clouds in this image. MODIS on  NASA’s Aqua satellite captured the image on May 12, 2010. Source: NASA E/O [Caption edited for brevity.] Download large image (1003 KB, JPEG). Click image to enlarge.

The above photo was taken by Ólafur Sigurjónsson on May 7 at 21:00 local time. Image published by IMO. Read full story here. Click image to enlarge.

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Posted in environment, iceland volcanoes, Icelandic ash cloud, volcanic ash, volcanic hazard | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »

Eyjafjallajokull Volcano: ASTER data

Posted by feww on April 24, 2010

ASTER data of Eyjafjallajokull Volcano

The following data have been acquired by the ASTER instrument on the NASA Terra satellite, and posted on Internet by University of Pittsburgh volcanologist Michael Ramsey. The data were collected both day and night. ASTER acquires data in the visible/near infrared (VNIR) and thermal infrared (TIR) during day time overpasses and in the TIR at night. The VNIR images are at 15 m/pixel resolution and the TIR are 90 m/pixel (each image covers approximately 60 km by 60 km).

Eyjafjallajokull Eruption Day time visible/near infrared image (13.5 MB) dated April 19, 2010.

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Posted in eyjafjalla, Eyjafjallajökull, Eyjafjallajökull eruption, Iceland volcano, iceland volcanoes, magma, Volcano Hazards, Volcanology | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Lift Volcanic Ash Flight Ban—Multinationals

Posted by feww on April 19, 2010

Sacrificing Sanity for Money

Eyjafjallajökull Eruption Status:

  • Currently erupting with the ash plume reaching a height of about 7.5km
  • A large pocket of ash is drifting toward Europe

Volcanic Ash Advisory from London Met Office – Issued graphics – Received at 06:36GMT on 19 April 2010

Above is an illustration of volcanic ash dispersion up to 20,000 ft, issued at 7 pm on 18 April. Advisory charts are issued every six hours, for up to 18 hours ahead, by the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center.

Latest updates and advisories from UK Met Office –

Last updated: 20:26GMT on Sunday, 18 April 2010

… because of the worsening volcanic activity UK airspace has now been closed until 7am Monday.

The Eyjafjallajökull volcano is still erupting and weather patterns continue to blow volcanic ash towards the UK. Over the weekend, Met Office observations have detected dust in the atmosphere and on the ground. A research aircraft has recently encountered dust during its flight, albeit in fairly low concentrations

Decisions on flights and airline movement is controlled by National Air Traffic Services (NATS).

We will continue to produce forecasts of the ash cloud and will assess the impact into the week in consultations with CAA and NATS.

“We’re losing money, besides our test flights didn’t fall out of the sky.”

Europe’s air industry as well as a large number of international corporation have demanded an urgent removal of flight bans imposed because of ash from Eyjafjallajökull volcano.

Siding with the corporate paymasters, EU Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas is on record as saying that the “unprecedented situation” was “not sustainable” and that European authorities were working to find a solution.

“We cannot just wait until this ash cloud dissipates,” Siim Kallas was reported as saying.

Airspaces in 21 European countries were closed or partially closed as of posting.

According to the International Airports Council, ACI, about 313 airports had been completely or partially shut down because of the no-fly ban with an international  backlog of 63,000 canceled flights representing just under 7 million air travelers [Fir earth estimates are 78,000 flight and 14 million passengers.]

The airports are hit by a double whammy because they no longer just places where planes take off and land; they are colossal shopping malls, targeting the air travelers. On a per passenger basis, the airports are making more money than the airlines. [In case you ever wondered why you have to go to the airport 3-6 hours before your flight and walk 12 km to board the plane…]

Why is volcanic ash do dangerous?

Volcanic ash is composed of small tephra, or tiny bits of pulverized glass and rock that are created by volcanic eruptions. The particles are usually accompanied by several gases including sulfur dioxide (SO2), which is mixed with water in the air and converted into droplets of sulfuric acid and other substances that are harmful to the plane. Volcanic ash is potentially deadly to aircraft and their passengers. It poses three types of danger to aircraft by way of:

  • Clogging the engine and causing engine failure
    • Clogging the fuel and cooling systems
    • Melting in the hot parts of the engine, and fusing on engine components thereby causing loss of engine thrust that could lead into a flame out, shutting down the engine
    • Breaking the blades and other sensitive components inside the turbine
  • Causing physical damage to various parts of the plane including abrasion of engine parts, the airframe, as well as control and steering mechanism
  • Reducing visibility

What about the test flights?

Dutch and German airlines as well as British Airways have carried out “test flight” within the no-fly zone at altitudes of about 30,000ft (9.1km) on Saturday and Sunday, apparently without any visible damage to the planes.

The most obvious dangers of such recklessness are that the concentration of airborne ash particles is neither uniform, nor constant. The impact of ash on the plane may vary depending on several factors including continued activity at the volcano, which produces more ash as the time goes by, wind pasterns and others.

High concentrations of ash may exists in air pockets that the previous test flights avoided, or changing wind patterns could increase the concentration of ash in an air route within minutes.

Airlines are desperate because, in addition to losing money for each flight canceled [they claim the ban is costing them $200million each day,] their stock values are taking a nosedive, too. In fact some of the major carriers could lose by as much as 10 percent of their share values by Tuesday.

Why Airlines Might Prefer Crashing their Planes…

Do airlines prefer crashing their planes, rather than having them idle on the airport tarmacs? The arithmetic is simple: If an airline crashes a plane, insurance will pay.  If the planes sits on the tarmac, they lose money.

Countries that have been impacted

The Airspace in the following countries are fully closed:
Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Holland, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Luxembourg, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Switzerland, UK

Airspace partially closed:

Italy (northern airspace closed until Monday); Norway (2 -3 airports closed); Bulgaria (only a few airports are open); Poland (half dozen airports, including Warsaw, are open); Sweden (northern airports are now open); France (southern airports have now opened)

NO airspace restriction:

Greece, Lithuania, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Turkey, Ukraine

Carriers that have canceled flights to Europe on Monday:

China Airlines of Taiwan, Cathay Pacific,  Japan Airlines, Qantas, Air New Zealand, Thai Airways and Korean Air.

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Posted in Iceland volcano | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »