Plume From Space
This snapshot of the remote Pavlof volcano—located about 625 miles (a thousand kilometers) southwest of Anchorage, Alaska, along the Aleutian Islands—undergoing a massive eruption was captured from the International Space Station (ISS) on May 18.
The ISS—nearly 220 miles (354 kilometers) above the Earth—photographed this snow-capped volcano at peak activity, belching an ash cloud 20,000 feet (6 kilometers) into the atmosphere.
This oblique view from space allows volcanologists a unique peek into the rarely seen 3-D structure of the giant ash plume, seen here stretching out toward the North Pacific Ocean. (See more pictures of erupting volcanoes.)