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volcano lightning studied puyehue cordon caulle chile

A new report revealed that volcanic lightning storms can be as powerful as giant Great Plains thunderstorms and that more lightning means a bigger plume of ash



There are at least two types of volcanic lightning, a new radio-mapping study found. One occurs at the mouth of the volcano, and the other—as shown over Chile's Puyehue-Cordón Caulle volcano complex in 2011—electrifies the heights of the plume, possibly as rising water becomes a mix of droplets and ice-coated ash particles. Photograph by Carlos Gutierrez, Reuters


volcano lightning studied eyjafjallajokull iceland
Lightning branches out from behind a veil of ash clouds at Iceland's Eyjafjallajökull volcano in April 2010. Photograph by David Jon, NordicPhotos/Getty Images


volcano lightning studied iceland ash
It wasn't the lightning but rather the widespread ash clouds from the April 2010 eruption of Iceland's Eyjafjallajökull volcano (pictured) that eventually grounded a hundred thousand flights. Photograph by Lucas Jackson, Reuters 


Volcanic lightning is seen over the Puyehue
Volcanic lightning is seen over the Puyehue volcano, over 500 miles south of Santiago, Chile, Sunday June 5, 2011. Authorities have evacuated about 600 people in the nearby area. The volcano was calm on Sunday, one day after raining down ash and forcing thousands to flee, although the cloud of soot it had belched out still darkened skies as far away as Argentina. (AP Photo/Francisco Negroni, AgenciaUno)


Lightning strikes over the Puyehue volcano
Lightning strikes over the Puyehue volcano, over 500 miles south of Santiago, Chile, Monday June 6, 2011. Authorities have evacuated about 3,500 people in the nearby area. The volcano was calm on Monday, two days after raining down ash and forcing thousands to flee, although the cloud of soot it had belched out still darkened skies as far away as Argentina. (AP Photo/Francisco Negroni, AgenciaUno)

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