Mount Etna eruption: Sicilian volcano violently spews lava 1km into the sky | Science | News


Mount Etna has erupted late last night, belching smoke and ash over Sicily. The volcano’s eruption was even seen from space, with the European Space Agency (ESA) publishing powerful images of the fallout. Mount Etna is the biggest volcano in Europe and is one of the world’s most active.

As of Tuesday morning, the volcano is still showing worrying signs of activity and the eruption is ongoing.

According to volcano trackers at Volcano Discovery, the stratovolcano has been spewing jets of lava 1km into the sky.

Volcano Discovery said: “Once more, Etna produced a very impressive show of unsurpassed fireworks at night: The – awaited – 5th lava fountaining episode (known as paroxysm) occurred late at night and turned out to be particular violent, equal or even stronger than the previous one 48 hours earlier.

“It was the 5th in a row during a single week’s time.”

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The eruption was preceded by mild activity that picked up about 10pm local time last night.

Tremors were also felt at the volcano, indicating magma was rising to the surface.

Lava fountains were then seen shooting up from the crater from about midnight local time, increasing in activity.

By about 12.30am, the eruptive episode reached its peak phase with lava jest 1km high.

A column of ash and steam surpassed the lava, however, reaching up to 10km in height.

Volcano Discovery reports show activity ceased by 1.05am but picked up again between 4am and 6am.

The volcano’s southeast side was then rocked by a series of strong explosions.

Lava flows were seen on the southwest and to the east of Etna’s new southeast crater.

When the volcano erupted last week, Sicily’s Catania Airport was forced to temporarily close due to the threat to aircraft from volcanic ash.

The airport was reopened sometime after its runway was cleaned up.

A volcano ash advisory issued on Tuesday morning has warned of ash clouds at an altitude of about 22,000ft or 6.7km.

The ash was seen moving at a speed of 25 knots in a northwest direction.

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