Skip to main content

Portraits of Earth: Mount Pinatubo

Who knew what Mount Pinatubo would do? After centuries of dormancy, it produced the second-largest volcanic explosion of the 20th century.


Special Thanks: NASA’s Earth Observing System, Dr. Mark Schoeberl NASA GSFC, Dr. Paul Newman NASA GSFC

Produced by the Space Telescope Science Institute’s Office of Public Outreach in collaboration with the NASA Earth Observatory (
All images and animations courtesy of NASA and the Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio

  • Photo of eruption plume and pyroclastic flow in Marella River Valley: USGS/Ed Wolfe

  • Photo of pyroclastic flow deposits in Marella River Valley: USGS/Willie Scott

  • Photo of Pinatubo eruption plume over Clark Air Base: USGS/Richard P. Hoblitt

  • Graphic of Earth’s atmosphere: John Godfrey, STScI

  • Photo of children on a school roof: USGS/Chris Newhall

  • Aerial photo of lahar damage in the village of Sapangbato: USGS/Richard P. Hoblitt

  • Mt. Pinatubo crater lake photo: Raymie Villanueva

  • Written by Lisa Rudy, Explorations Unlimited

  • Designed by John Godfrey

  • Music courtesy of Associated Production Music


All narration is presented in text form within the video. In addition, a full transcript will be available in the Library in the near future. Check back soon!