Popocatepetl from the Space Station
The image ISS01-ESC-5316
is provided and archived by the Earth Sciences and Image Analysis Laboratory,
Johnson Space Center. Additional images taken by astronauts can
be viewed at NASA-JSCs Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth at
Popocatépetl, or Popo, the active volcano located about 70 km southeast of Mexico City, sends a plume south on January 23, 2001. The astronaut crew on the International
Space Station Alpha observed and recorded this image as they orbited to
the northeast of the volcano. Popo has been frequently active for six
years. On this day, the eruption plume reportedly rose to more than 9
km above sea level [for reference, Popos summit elevation is 5426
m (17,800 feet)]. Note the smaller ash plume below the main plume (arrow). The
perspective from the ISS allowed the astronauts this unique 3
Popo is situated between two large population centers: Mexico City
(more than 18 million people, and just off the image to the right) and
Puebla (about 1.2 million people). The regions dense population
provides the potential for extreme impacts from volcanic hazards.
Recent eruptions have been frequent, and have resulted in evacuations
around the mountain.
This image originally appeared on the Earth Observatory. Click here to view the full, original record.