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To the southeast (image right), the large breached crater of Kozelsky volcano also appears above the clouds.

Kozelsky is a parasitic cone, formed by the eruption of material from vents along the flank of Avachinsky. The Kuril Island chain is built from a line of volcanoes, an island arc, that extends from Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula to northern Japan.

Island arcs form along an active boundary between two tectonic plates, with one being driven beneath the other (subduction).

Magma generated by subduction feeds volcanoes - and eventually volcanic islands - over the subduction boundary.

Low-level stratus clouds approach Matua Island from the east, wrapping around the lower slopes of the volcano.

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Only about 1.5 km (1 mi) of the coastline of Matua Island (upper center) can be seen beneath the clouds and ash. Russia's eastern Kamchatka Peninsula, which extends far into the Pacific Ocean, includes more than 150 volcanoes.

While most are not actively erupting, many are considered dangerous due to their eruptive history and proximity to population centers and air travel corridors.

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