Space satellites provide photos of deadly eruptions from Mount Etna

Earth-orbiting satellites have provided images of Mount Etna spewing lava across Sicily. The incident has been taking place for weeks. Etna is an active volcano mountain in the whole of Europe, and its exposure to eruption started in 2011. the recent series of eruptions began on February 16, 2021. On that date, a volcano was seen erupting, again another series took place after two days, and the last one on February 23, 2021. Fountains of lava could be seen shooting high into the sky, reaching a height of 0.7 kilometers higher than the previous one. Later in the month, the lava shot as high as 1.5 kilometers.

According to the statement released by Marco Neri, an Italian-based volcanologist stated that the recent volcanoes were recorded to be among the most dangerous in the Southeast Crater’s young history. Marco Neri works with Italy’s National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology.

Earth-observing satellites were close to observe the smoke, lava, and ash coming out of the volcano. On February 18, NASA-US Geological Survey Landsat 8 satellite took a natural picture of the volcano. In the picture, it appeared overlapped with infrared data to spot lava; however, the spots showed how lava had broken through. Besides, on the same date, the European Space Agency’s Copernicus Sentinel-2, which consists of two satellites, took a view of the volcano. The satellite snapped a picture showing bright orange and red lava coming out of the mountain.

On February 23, Mount Etna was seen erupting again. NOAA-20 Satellite that belongs to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration produced the image. NOAA-20 satellite used the VIIRS (Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer) gadget to provide a distinct image of plumes erupting from the volcano. Five days later, Landsat 8 satellite snapped a nigh image on the mountain to depict the lava’s heat signature. The satellite uses a shortwave of infrared bands to facilitate the distinct view of the lava.

On February 25, Landsat 8 satellite took a view of the volcano during the night. The satellite revealed that the lava down below at the base of the mountain contained heat emanating from it.  Those eruptions did not cause a major alarm to the surrounding environments. The Ash that came out of the mountain blocked the Catania Airport and was deposited across Sicily. The only problem here was that the residents had to take care of themselves from the falling ash and rocks.