Stunning view from orbit: Dramatic volcanoes at dawn

Jan 07, 2013 by Nancy Atkinson, Universe Today
Volcanoes of Kamchatka, Russia at dawn, as seen from the International Space Station. Credit: NASA/CSA/Chris Hadfield

A stunning view from orbit! Astronaut Chris Hadfield captured this shot of the volcanoes of Kamchatka in Russia. "Volcanoes look dramatic at dawn," Hadfield said via Twitter. "They startled me when I spotted them through the lens."

Note the huge shadows created by the Sun, which is low on the horizon at dawn.

These are just a few of the 160 volcanoes on the in the far eastern part of Russia. 29 of the 160 are active. Thanks to Peter Caltner on Twitter who identified the volcanoes seen here: Tolbachik (at left, in clouds and smoke plume, active presently); Ushkovsky (in the back, right); Kliuchevskoi (right edge, the peak in front). Little ones in the foreground: Udina (left) and Zimina (right).

These jagged peaks are obviously an eye-catching landmark from orbit, as they have been a target of observations before—by Yuri Malenchenko in November of 2012 and by Clay Anderson in December of 2011.

Explore further: The source of the sky's X-ray glow

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