Photo Story: Before and after the Tonga volcanic eruption

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A handout composite satellite image made available by Copernicus, the European Union’s Earth Observation Programme, shows imagery produced using data from the Copernicus Sentinel-2 satellite acquired on 2 January 2022 (L) and Copernicus Sentinel-1 satellite from 15 January 2022 (R) of the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai underwater volcano.

The Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai underwater volcano erupted in the Archipelago of Tonga on 15 January. According to scientists from the University of Auckland, the eruption was the most powerful recorded on Earth in the last 30 years.

In the left image, before the eruption, the volcanic island is clearly visible, whereas in the right image, acquired hours after the explosion, only two small fragments of the island remain visible.


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