Gunarto Song, a photographer from Indonesia, captured a rare and unique moment at Mount Merapi volcano. The volcano has erupted regularly since the 16th century and is known as the “Mountain of Fire.” Gunarto was in for something exceptional during his recent photoshoot when he photographed lava coming out of the volcano’s mouth.
The current eruption status of Mount Merapi has made it so that no one is allowed to go within three miles. To catch the evening scenery, he was after, Song retired to Batu Alien – a large stone hurled from the mouth of this volcano during an eruption sits next to a cliff that gives a good view of Mount Merapi. As he fixated on some clouds, there came down in front him with rapidity and precision enough time for his shake-shutter just as it happened: A flash lighted but only lit up partway before quickly disappearing all at once into nothingness like fog or smoke dissipating over water when morning broke through its misty shrouds.
The flash of light in the sky was a meteor. Song captured the exact moment that it appeared to fall into Mount Merapi with her camera, which has now gone viral on social media with over 30,000 likes! The long-exposure image transformed this shooting star into what resembled an arc or streak of bright white light through the sky from the earth’s perspective. “I set my shutter speed at four seconds so I could capture how fast and round [the] lights were,” shared photographer Song after taking his photo last night when he saw strange flashes as if lightning had lit up across Mt. Merapi for five hours straight–except these flares came out from nowhere and disappeared just as quickly without any thunder following them
The National Institute of Aeronautics and Space (LAPAN) confirmed that the strange green light in a rural area is from a meteor. This event, caught on film by multiple CCTV cameras, happened during an active Arietid Meteor shower and Eta Aquarid Meteor Shower simultaneous with other natural phenomena such as lightning flashes. The magnesium content in this particular meteor caused it to emit these bright greens colors at night.