In the vast and icy solitude of the Southern Hemisphere, a fiery spectacle has been unfolding. Satellite imagery has recently captured lava spilling down the sides of Big Ben, one of the two active volcanoes located on Australian territory, on Heard Island near Antarctica.
Big Ben, aptly named for its imposing size, is situated about 1,500 kilometers north of Antarctica and 4,100 kilometers southwest of Perth. The volcano is part of the uninhabited Heard Island, and it stands as a fiery sentinel against the icy backdrop of the Antarctic plate, which is home to more than 100 volcanoes, including about 90 hidden beneath the ice.
The current eruption of Big Ben is not a recent event. The ongoing eruption was first noted more than a decade ago. Since then, the Global Volcanism Program at the Smithsonian Institution has recorded about 20 “lava flow” incidents. This recent lava outpouring appears to be part of an “eruption episode” that has been ongoing since September 2012.
The most recent lava flow, captured in a stunning composite of visible and infrared satellite images on May 25, 2023, was still visible three days later, despite being partially obscured by clouds. The satellite imagery suggests that these are the latest in a series of small eruptions that have been occurring at the volcano over the last 18 months.
What makes Big Ben even more intriguing is its unusual behavior for an intraplate volcano. As volcanologists have observed, while other similar oceanic volcanoes tend to eventually collapse into the Earth’s crust under their own weight, Big Ben appears to be lifting higher.
This fascinating phenomenon further enhances the allure of Big Ben, a beacon of geological intrigue in the cold Antarctic region.
The fiery drama of the Big Ben eruption captivates the world near icy Antarctica. It reminds us of our planet’s dynamic nature. Fire and ice converge as molten lava spills down icy slopes. This stunning visual spectacle also provides scientists an incredible chance to study Earth’s complex geological processes.
We will continue to follow the developments of this eruption and bring you the latest updates on this remarkable volcanic activity near the bottom of the world. The eruptions of Big Ben are a testament to the dynamic, ever-changing nature of our planet, and we are here to keep you informed as we all witness these majestic events unfold. Check out more world news from Right Celebrity.