April 28, 2014 - Ash plume from Ubinas Volcano, Peru

Ash plume from Ubinas Volcano, Peru

Peruís Ubinas volcano has been increasingly restless since early February, 2014. Scientists reported episodes of tremor in the first days of the month and increased sulfur emissions by mid-month. Increasing sulfur dioxide emissions suggests the presence of new magma.

In early March, a new hot spot was detected at the crater, suggestive of new lava. On March 7 a pilot overflying the area reported a possible ash plume, and the presence of new lava in Ubinasí crater was confirmed. On March 13, the Brazilian Volcanic Ash Advisory Center issued a warning for possible volcanic ash with the potential to impact flights. A small eruption occurred on March 31, and by April 12 Ubinas was in near constant activity, with explosions on April 9 reaching up to 3,000 meters (9,842 feet) high, and incandescent lava fragments of up to 20 cm in size were ejected as far away as 1 km from the crater.

On April 15, after a 4,000 meter (13,123 feet) high ash cloud was emitted, Peruvian officials declared a state of emergency for 60 days for the area surrounding the volcano, and the alert status was raised from yellow to orange, the second-highest level of the four-tiered alert system. Villagers and livestock have been evacuated to safer ground as the volcano continues activity.

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASAís Terra satellite flew over the region and captured this true-color image of broad ash plumes rising from Ubinas and blowing to the southeast. The volcano can be seen in the upper left corner of the image.

Image Facts
Satellite: Terra
Date Acquired: 4/14/2014
Resolutions: 250m ( B)
Bands Used: 1,4,3
Image Credit: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC