It’s the latest island to emerge from the depths of the Red Sea.
The island, which remains the peak of an active underwater volcano, was created by a wild eruption that occurred in the Red Sea earlier this month.
The newest island is located in between Haydock Island and Rugged Island — to barren islands in the Red Sea. The chain of small islands is located off the coast of Yemen. Running in a roughly northwest-southeast line, the islands poke above the sea surface, rising from a shield volcano.
The smoking island emerged from the sea earlier this month, surprising a group of fisherman who frequented the area. NASA officials later confirmed the reports, using the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer, or MODIS, on NASA’s Terra and Aqua satellites. The Ozone Monitoring Instrument on NASA’s Aura satellite also detected elevated levels of sulfur dioxide, further indicating an eruption, said officials.
Meanwhile, the Advanced Land Imager (ALI) on NASA’s Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) satellite captured these high-resolution, natural-color images on December 23, 2011, and October 24, 2007. The image from December 2011 shows an apparent island where there had previously been an unbroken water surface. A thick plume rises from the island, dark near the bottom and light near the top, perhaps a mixture of volcanic ash and water vapor.
NASA officials said they will continue to monitor the situation in the Red Sea, adding that this region is part of the Red Sea Rift where the African and Arabian tectonic plates pull apart and new ocean crust regularly forms.