Mexico’s Volcán de Colima has been erupting in spectacular displays lately. It has had a long history of violent eruptions, but in the last few years, this stratovolcano has been picking up the pace somewhat by exhibiting near-continuous eruptive activity.
Volcán de Colima is being constantly monitored by scientists and emergency services, but it also caught the eye of photographer Sergio Tapiro Velasco, who managed to capture this unbelievably stunning image of volcanic lightning leaping from the tip of a plume of ash.
Why does lightning strike in this plume of volcanic ash? Friction! Particles of ash charge by rubbing against one other during the eruption, and eventually discharge as lightning.
The Colima volcano is one of the most active volcanoes in Mexico, and is also called ‘Volcán de Fuego’ or ‘Fire volcano.’ It has erupted more than 40 times since the first documented eruption in 1576.
The latest news on this current eruption is that local authorities have put the volcano on a yellow alert, meaning the volcano is showing increased activity, and residents who live nearby should prepare for a possible evacuation.