Saturday, 22 May 2010

Gathering clouds over the horizon, Part III

Eyjafjallajoekull volcanic ash blown southeastward caused air traffic disruption last week over the northern British Isles again. I post the North Atlantic section of NOAA's free web mapping services of global cloud and chemical composition:

  • false colour images give the space-shuttle view of cloud cover
  • SO2 (sulfur dioxide) accompanies hard-to-see ash clouds (below)
  • CO (carbon monoxide) is also associated with volcanic eruption

The video shows this week's false colour imagery over the North Atantic (it can be seen on YouTube here).

The quick view below can be seen on a full giscloud map here with all three datasets, LIVE: Step through the previous days layers by turning them on sequentially from the bottom up.

To repeat, these live data feeds give you current and previous coverage against other public vector datasets off the web.
Last week I posted this as ArcGIS Explorer (AGX) document on ArcGIS Online here. The cover snapshot shows the ash plume that ground traffic then. Note however that:
  • AGX is a desktop plugin and therefore slow on some machines
    - my home notebook with old video drivers won't post the WMS services
    - issues reported even on Windows 7 also seem to relate to video drivers
  • it shows WMS, KML and ESRI layer file attributions, but not shape file styling
  • ArcGIS Online only distributes to ArcGIS, go here to get AGX file it directly

Update: I posted a short paper on this topic