June 7, 2011

Today’s Cool Photo of the Week is simply incredible. A volcano in Chile erupted this week for the first time in 50 years, and the friction caused between the rising cloud of dust and the air above the volcano created this astounding cloud-to-cloud lightning.

This is a massive eruption. Ash has been blown six miles into the sky, 3500 people have been evacuated, airports are closed, and cities in Chile and nearby Argentina are covered with so much ash that it looks as if there has been a snowstorm.

Officials say that they can’t even tell which one of four volcanoes in the Puyehue-Cordon Caulle volcanic chain has erupted, because of all the ash clouding the sky. Chile’s chain of about 2,000 volcanoes is the world’s second largest after Indonesia. Like Indonesia, Chile is situated on the "Ring of Fire" - the area in the Pacific Ocean that has the strongest geological activity on Earth, including many earthquakes and volcanoes. 

Posted by: Seymour Simon

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