VOLCANO LIGHTNING PHOTOS: Alaska's Redoubt Goes Electric

VOLCANO LIGHTNING PHOTOS: Alaska's Redoubt Goes Electric
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A plume of ash continues to vent from Alaska's Redoubt Volcano on April 11, 2009. The volcano began rumbling in January but didn't explode until March 22 (read about the eruption), which allowed scientists to deploy lightning mapping arrays before the eruption--a first.

Information from the arrays could be a scientific gold mine. "New details of volcanic plume lightning will emerge," said Bradley Smull, program director of the National Science Foundation's Division of Atmospheric Sciences, which funded the research, in a statement.

"The opportunity for standalone analysis, and comparisons with last year's similar observations of Chaiten volcano [see electrifying pictures of the Chaiten eruption] in Chile, will tell us much more about this phenomenon."

More Redoubt Volcano eruption pictures--huge mudflow, ash >>
—Photograph courtesy Alaska Volcano Observatory
 
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