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Ash Cloud Simulations - What if Mount St. Helens Produced an Explosive Eruption Today?

When a volcano erupts explosively, an ash cloud will be produced. Its size and travel-distance are determined by the amount of material erupted, the height of the cloud, plus the wind directions and speeds. Knowing where the ash cloud might travel is critical for managing air space and warning downwind communities to be ready for possible ash fall.

The following three Ash3D computer simulations, developed by the USGS, use current wind speed and directional data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration along with eruption size parameters set by volcanologists to model the potential path of an ash cloud if an eruption were to occur from Mount St. Helens today. This does not mean an eruption has occurred. Read the CVO activity update for information on current volcanic conditions.

What is the simulated ash-cloud path if an explosive eruption were to occur from Mount St. Helens today?