Tonga volcanic eruption was so powerful NASA detected it in space

The underwater volcano that recently erupted near Tonga exploded with such force that NASA detected it with a satellite in space.

@JakConnorTT
Published Thu, Jan 20 2022 1:32 AM CST   |   Updated Wed, Feb 16 2022 1:42 PM CST

In a recent article published in The Conversation, Gareth Dorrian, a Post Doctoral Research Fellow in Space Science, University of Birmingham, explains how the recent volcanic eruption was detected in space.

On January 15, an underwater volcano located 40 miles north of the Tongan capital erupted with the power equivalent to 10 megatons of TNT exploding, or more than 500 times as powerful as the nuclear bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima. The eruption spawned a tsunami that has devastated Tongan islands, wiping out most houses and structures, the event has been caused an "unprecedented disaster" by the Tongan government.

Dorrian explains in the article that the eruption has generated "atmospheric gravity waves" that were detected by a NASA satellite. These waves that were detected will allow Dorrian and fellow researchers to better understand the top layers of Earth's atmosphere from events happening on Earth, and how volcanic eruptions can impact space, as opposed to the alternative perspective of how space impacts the top layer of Earth's atmosphere.

Read more: NASA says Tonga eruption was 500 times as powerful than a nuclear bomb

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Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science and space news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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