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Observations of the altitude of the volcanic plume during the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull, April–May 2010

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Author(s): P. Arason | G. N. Petersen | H. Bjornsson

Journal: Earth System Science Data
ISSN 1866-3508

Volume: 3;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 9;
Date: 2011;
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ABSTRACT
The eruption of Eyjafjallajökull volcano in 2010 lasted for 39 days, 14 April–23 May. The eruption had two explosive phases separated by a phase with lava formation and reduced explosive activity. The height of the plume was monitored every 5 min with a C-band weather radar located in Keflavík International Airport, 155 km distance from the volcano. Furthermore, several web cameras were mounted with a view of the volcano, and their images saved every five seconds. Time series of the plume-top altitude were constructed from the radar observations and images from a web camera located in the village Hvolsvöllur at 34 km distance from the volcano. This paper presents the independent radar and web camera time series and performs cross validation. The results show good agreement between the time series for the range when both series are available. However, while the radar altitudes are semi-discrete the data availability was much higher than for the web camera, indicating how essential weather radars are as eruption plume monitoring devices. The echo top radar series of the altitude of the volcanic plume are publicly available from the Pangaea Data Publisher (http://dx.doi.org/10.1594/PANGAEA.760690).
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