GETTYFlights to be disrupted this Christmas as Antarctic eruption looms
Scientists have proven that ash caused by an eruption on Deception Island could disrupt air travel as far away as South America, Australia, and Africa.
Charles Connor, a geoscientist at the University of South Florida in Tampa said: “We have to reassess the potential hazards for global transportation networks posed by even these remote volcanoes.”
There have been around 30 eruptions over the last 10,000 years, with the last one being in 1970.
Both Argentina and Spain have scientific research bases on the island, and tourists flock there to admire the world’s largest colony of chinstrap penguins.
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A plume of smoke above Mount Agung volcano is illuminated at sunset as seen from Amed, Karangasem Regency, Bali
Adelina Geyer, a geologist at the Institute of Earth Sciences Jaume Almera in Barcelona, Spain, and her team modelled an eruption on Deception Island by simulating different column heights for volcanic ash at five, 10, and 15 kilometres.
Ash in the atmosphere is a serious problem for aircrafts because it melts inside of engines and gums up fuel lines. It also does not appear on the radar.
There have been hundreds of alleged incidents of aircrafts encountering volcanic ash, such as the 1989 case of KLM flight 867, which lost power in all four engines and fell more than 13,000 feet after flying through an ash cloud from Alaska’s Redoubt Volcano.Related articles