We've had a number of emails today commenting about the amount of dust/smoke/steam swirling within the crater today. Rest assured it's just volcanic dust and not any new volcanic activity. The USGS is on top of these things and we have no reports that it's anything other than dust in the wind.
The new VolcanoCamHD continues to function beyond our expectations. The images are crystal clear and sharp, especially in the early morning hours as the lighting conditions rapidly change. At the same time we are not neglecting VolcanoCam Classic. That camera is our old workhorse, day in and day out. While its images are not as sharp as the new high definition camera its infrared capabilities provide nighttime views of the lava dome as magma reaches the surface.
A weather front is coming onshore from the Northern Pacific today. While it may bring much needed rain, it also brings clouds to obsure any views of Mount St. Helens. We may in for poor views for the next several days.
It looks like we had a network transmission problem in the early morning hours affecting both cameras. VolcanoCam Classic managed to right itself but VolcanoCamHD did not. We will continue to monitor both cameras more closely than normal this morning just to make sure everything is working.
Thank you for your emails. Everyone is read, and while we try to respond to each one, it's not always possible to do so. A few VolcanoCam viewers continue to experience problems with viewing the images. You may want to check out the Problems Matrix to see if your problem (and potential solution) is listed.
We have a few emails from VolcanoCam viewers the VolcanoCamHD image is not as bright now that it is zoomed in just a bit. This may very well be the case since the perspective has changed, including the lighting conditions. We do have the capability to remotely adjust the brightness, color and hue saturation levels of the new camera to compensate for changed lighting conditions. However, we're taking the slow approach and limiting changes to just the zoom levels for now and noting the changes.
If this morning's ground fog clears, we may zoom in a bit more to offer a close up of just the crater and domes. Comments are always welcome.