Eruption of Mount Pelee, 1902

Eruption of Mount Pelee, 1902

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Credit: ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Eruption of Mount Pelee, on the Caribbean island of Martinique. This is the eruption of 6 December 1902, not the main eruption of 8 May 1902 that destroyed the town of Saint-Pierre. However, like the earlier eruption, this one produced a pyroclastic flow in addition to the eruption column rising into the sky. The pyroclastic flow is the cloud of burning ash and gas below the eruption column, rolling down the slopes of the volcano into the sea. Pyroclastic flows incinerate everything in their path, and the one of 8 May killed some 30,000 people within minutes. This image was published in volume 16 (1908) of the US magazine Popular Astronomy.

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Keywords: 1900s, 1902, 1908, 20th century, ash, ash cloud, black-and-white, caribbean, coast, coastline, deadly, december, earth science, erupting, eruption, eruption column, fatal, geological, geology, historical, history, history of science, island, land, landscape, martinique, monochrome, mount pelee, mountain, natural disaster, north america, north american, popular astronomy, pyroclastic flow, saint pierre, saint-pierre, sea, secondary, volcanic, volcano, volcanology, vulcanology

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