Watch the awesome power of an explosive Strombolian eruption in the otherwise effusive lava lake at Erebus volcano, Antarctica. This particular clip was captured by a FLIR infrared camera in 2010 and is slowed to show detail. The lake is about 30 meters across, and we are viewing it from about 300 meters away.
As the clip is in the infrafred (IR), colors correspond to temperature (although note that the absolute scale shown on the side of the clip is not accurate, but relative temperatures are correct). The brightest spots are the hottest spots.
These eruptions can occur up to several times per day at Erebus, and their exact origins are not totally understood. The current thinking is that hot, gaseous magma ascends from deep within the magmatic plumbing system every so often and manifests as a burst of energy from the lake.
To learn more about Erebus and her lava lake, check out these scientific journal articles:
Ground-based thermal imaging of lava lakes at Erebus volcano, Antarctica (Calkins et al., 2008)
Pulsatory magma supply to a phonolite lava lake (Oppenheimer et al., 2009)
Probing the magma plumbing of Erebus volcano, Antarctica, by open-path FTIR spectroscopy of gas emissions (Oppenheimer & Kyle, 2008)