Each year from the estimated 1,500 active volcanoes dotted around the world around 50 of them erupt and 2015 was certainly no exception with volcanoes in Chile, Italy, the Galapagos Islands and Indonesia all erupting – just to name a few. Luckily for us photographers were there ready to capture the dramatic and often explosive action as it unfolds, resulting in some truly awe-inspiring photos.
The volcanic lighting or ‘dirty thunderstorm’ you see in the photos of both Mount Etna, Italy and Calbuco, Chile erupting is actually a naturally occurring phenomenon caused by electrical charges.
1. Volcanic lightning forming above Italy’s Mount Etnas on December 3, 2015.
2. Sicily is lit up a night by the eruption of Mount Etna’s Voragine crater, December 3, 2015.
3. The Wolf volcano spews smoke and lava, Isabela Island, Ecuador, May 25, 2015.
4. The Villarica volcano erupts near Pucón, Chile, March 3, 2015.
5. The Villarrica volcano illuminates low lying cloud, Chile, May 19, 2015.
6. The Villarrica volcano, Chile, May 10, 2015.
7. A pyroclastic hurtling down the slopes of Mount Sinabung, June 20, 2015.
8. An onlooker stares in awe as the Piton de la Fournaise volcano spews lava on February 5, 2015.
9. Lava flow viewed from above from the Piton de la Fournaise volcano erupting on May 17, 2015.
10. Lava flowing from the Piton de la Fournaise, July 31, 2015.
11. Lava erupting from one of the world’s most active volcanoes, Piton de la Fournaise, July 31, 2015.
12. Smoke rising from the Kilauea volcano located in Hawaii’s National Park, November 4, 2015.
13. The Momotombo volcano erupting with giant plumes of ash and lava in Leon, Nicaragua, December 2, 2015.
14. Lava flows down the side of the Colima Volcano near to the town of Comala, Mexico, July 10, 2015.
15. The Calbuco volcano eruption seen from Puerto Varas, Chile, April 22, 2015.
16. Calbuco volcano, Chile, April 22, 2015.
17. Moments after the Chile’s Calbuco erupts, April 22, 2015.
18. Ash plumes and volcanic lightning forming above the Calbuco volcano, Chile, April 23, 2015.
19. Volcanic lightning above the Calbuco volcano in Chile, April 23, 2015.
20. Calbuco volcano photographed from Puerto Varas, Chile, April 24, 2015.