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Cloud of Ash Spewing from Iceland’s Grimsvotn Volcano – May 26th, 2011

64.4N 17.3W

May 26th, 2011 Category: Image of the day, Volcanoes

Iceland - May 23rd, 2011

This image shows a cloud of ash spewing from Iceland’s Grimsvotn volcano, a vision reminiscent of the 2010 eruptions of the Eyjafjallajökull volcano (click here for previous articles). The Grimsvotn volcano is located under the Vatnajokull glacier in the Vatnajokull National Park – the biggest national park in Europe.

Although the eruption temporarily affected European air travel, with about 700 flights cancelled in Germany on Wednesday, air traffic is now operating normally. In Iceland, clean up of the ash has begun, and all major roads have been reopened.

Condensation Trails Over Germany and Denmark

54.4N 11.0E

May 13th, 2010 Category: Snapshots

Germany - April 28th, 2010

Germany - April 28th, 2010

Condensation trails are visible over Germany, some of the Danish isles and the Baltic Sea in this recent image that was obviously taken on a day when ash from the erupting Eyjafjallajokul volcano was not blowing over northern european airspace and interfering with flights.

Condensation trails, or contrails, are streaks of condensed water vapor caused by hot engine exhaust  from airplanes cooling in the atmosphere.

Eyjafjallajokul Volcano Sends Ash Due East – May 13th, 2010

63.7N 19.5W

May 13th, 2010 Category: Image of the day, Volcanoes

Ash Plume, Iceland - May 12th, 2010

Ash Plume, Iceland - May 12th, 2010

Close-up of Plume

Close-up of Plume

Despite the clouds covering most of Iceland and the surrounding ocean, the location of the volcano Eyjafjallajokul is easily pinpointed at the origin of the plume of ash. At the time this image was taken, winds were blowing the ash due east.

On May 11th and 12th, the volcanic ash cloud from Iceland reached the air space of Turkey as well as North African countries. Around 5 airports in Morocco were shut down as a precautionary measure due to the ash cloud.

The ash cloud from the 2010 Iceland volcano also closed airspace over Southern Spain, which caused airports to be shutdown in some Spanish Islands. Turkey affected by the volcanic ash as previously mentioned, but 2 airports were functional in Istanbul.

Eyjafjallajokul Volcano in Ireland Wreaks Havoc with European Flights Once Again – May 11th, 2010 – UPDATE

63.6N 19.3W

May 11th, 2010 Category: Image of the day, Volcanoes

Ash Plume, Iceland - May 11th, 2010

Ash Plume, Iceland - May 11th, 2010

Close-up of Plume and Volcano

Close-up of Plume and Volcano

Airlines canceled hundreds of flights across Europe and added hours to trans-Atlantic journeys once again Sunday as planes were diverted around a large  plume of ash spewed by the Eyjafjallajokul volcano in Iceland that stretched from Greenland to Portugal.

So far, the weekend cancellations have been a fraction of the flights nixed two weeks ago when jittery European air traffic authorities closed down much of the continent’s airspace for fear the volcano’s abrasive ash could harm jet engines. But the possibility loomed of continuing eruption, and rising costs to airlines from ongoing disruption.

The bulk of the cloud, measuring 2,100 miles long and 1,400 miles wide (3,400 kilometers by 2,200 kilometers), stretched over the North Atlantic, according to the Irish Aviation Authority. It ordered Ireland’s five westernmost airports to close Sunday afternoon but allowed the country’s three biggest airports in Dublin, Shannon and Cork to stay open.

Airlines diverted their trans-Atlantic traffic north and south of the cloud, causing congestion as planes tried to squeeze through remaining routes. Some connections were canceled entirely because of an offshoot of the main cloud that was snaking its way from Portugal through Spain, southern France and northern Italy, then up to Germany, the Czech Republic and Austria.

Daniel Gerstgrasser, a meteorologist with Switzerland’s national weather agency, said rain would help wash out the cloud by Monday morning and no further ash drifts were expected to reach the continent in the coming 24 hours, although this image, taken today, clearly shows ash still being expelled from the volcano.

Ash closes Irish, UK airports – May 4th, 2010

63.8N 17.4W

May 4th, 2010 Category: Image of the day, Volcanoes

Ash Plume, Iceland - May 2nd, 2010

Ash Plume, Iceland - May 2nd, 2010

Ash Plume detail - May 2nd, 2010

Ash Plume detail - May 2nd, 2010

Airports in Ireland and parts of Britain were closed again for some hours on Tuesday because of the cloud of volcanic ash drifting south from Iceland that wreaked havoc on European air travel last month.

Flights in much of continental Europe were operating as normal and the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) said it would allow flights to resume from Irish airports from 1200 GMT after a closure lasting six hours.

However, the IAA said northerly winds forecast for the coming days could bring more clouds of ash from the Icelandic eruption and disruption for passengers this week.

“We could be faced with this periodically during the summer,” IAA Chief Executive Eamonn Brennan said. “We are probably facing a summer of uncertainty due to this ash cloud,” Brennan said.

The IAA had closed airports from 0600 GMT until 1200 GMT due to risk of ash ingestion in aircraft engines, although overflights of Ireland from Britain and continental Europe had not been banned.

The UK’s National Air Traffic Services (NATS) said a no-fly zone was in place in the west of Scotland and Northern Ireland, from 0700 a.m. (0600 GMT) until at least 1300 (1200 GMT).

European flights overall were expected to be at almost normal levels on Tuesday, European air traffic agency Eurocontrol said.

On a typical weekday, just under 200 flights would be expected in and out of Ireland, compared with around 28,000 throughout Europe, a spokeswoman said.

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