Alaska Volcano

Yesterday I put together an item on Tropical Storm Bertha. Today I decided to head to a colder climate and post an interesting picture from NOAA of an ash plume from a volcano on the Aleutian Islands.

In addition to the plume itself, notice that clouds are banked up along the north side of the mountains in the island chain with a cloud free zone downwind from the islands. The air cresting over the ridge tops descends on the lee side of the slopes. This warms the air enough to evaporate the clouds. Further downwind the air chills enough for cloud redevelopment. The downwind cloud patterns show the concentration of moisture streams as well as a few swirls and eddies in the atmosphere resulting from the air moving over the rough terrain.

John Collins

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