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NASA's ASTER (Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer)captured these images of Guatemala's Fuego volcano on Nov. 24, following a recent eruption. The main image shows the lava flows on the flanks of Fuego (upper left corner) in light gray. Vegetation is shown in red, clouds in white, and city and fields in dark gray. A thick ash plume rising from the peak of the volcano and more diffuse ash clouds over the southern part of the scene are also visible.
The thermal infrared composite highlights the ash clouds in orange, with a dark orange cloud over the summit where the ash is thickest. White areas are relatively warmer; Fuego's summit is bright white at the active crater.
The images cover an area of 42 by 57 kilometers, and are located at 14.3 degrees north, 90.9 degrees west.
With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region and its high spatial resolution of about 50 to 300 feet (15 to 90 meters), ASTER images Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet. ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched Dec. 18, 1999, on Terra. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and data products.
The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER provides scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping and monitoring of dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are monitoring glacial advances and retreats; monitoring potentially active volcanoes; identifying crop stress; determining cloud morphology and physical properties; wetlands evaluation; thermal pollution monitoring; coral reef degradation; surface temperature mapping of soils and geology; and measuring surface heat balance.
The U.S. science team is located at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington.
More information about ASTER is available at http://asterweb.jpl.nasa.gov/.