Popocatepetl update

This is today’s live-blog update; it seems worthwhile to share here, too. The volcano is rather active this morning. CENAPRED (and Webcams de Mexico) have live streams from two webcams, and here is their webicorder.

February 15, 2020, 10:05 a.m., Pacific: Popo has a lot of energy this morning. I’ve been watching it just now through the Tlamacas live stream, and in 20 minutes it has had numerous “puffs.” CENAPRED, in its morning update, calls them a sequence of exhalations. They released this video:

What’s the difference between an exhalation and an explosion?

Popo also had a few explosions overnight, including this awesome one in the late evening:

It’s good that Popocatepetl is an open-conduit system so that energy can be released in such relatively harmless ways.

Watching Popo is addictive any time, but especially when it is so active. This morning, while gazing at it through the Tlamacas cam and sipping morning coffee — yes! — I noticed that there seemed to be two plume sources. The one on the right was faint, but emitting a whitish blue vapor that I’ve read elsewhere indicates high sulfur content. The one much farther to the left was the usual gray/white mixture of vapors and light ash content.

Could be a crater and a fumarole, I suppose, or perhaps a dome up there (though it would have to be very large, given the separation of the two plumes), or two sources. Wish I were a fly on the wall at CENAPRED, just to learn more about the details. But I wouldn’t distract them from their all-important job of helping to protect all of Don Goyo’s human neighbors.

Featured image: Popocatepetl from Puebla, on a quieter day. Image by Russ Bowling, CC BY 2.0

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