El Hierro Volcano eruption (Canary Islands) : Part 26 – January 14 until January 19

This is Part 26 of the El Hierro Volcano eruption report


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With the collaboration of Joke Volta, an El Hierro resident.
Read also: (28/7 - early 09)  - (25/09 - 10/10)  -  (11/10 - 13/10) - (14/10 - 17-10)  -  (18/10 - 21/10)   (22/10 - 26/10 ) - (27/10 - 31/10 ) - (01/11 - 03/11 )(04/11 - 06/11 ) - (07/11 - 08/11) - (09/11- 11/11)  - (12/11 - 15/11)  - (16/11 - 19/11)  - (20/11 - 23/11) - (24/11 - 27/11) - (28/11 - 02/12) - (03/12 - 07/12) - (08/12 - 11/12) - (12/12 - 15/12) - (16/12 - 18/12) - (19/12 - 25/12) - (26/12 - 31/12) - (01/01 - 03/01) - (04/01 - 07/01) - (08/01 - 13/01) - Part 26 (14/01 - 19/01)
Useful links : @VolcanoReport - El Hierro Picasa Photo Album
Our Webcam pages : 3 in 1 pageLas Calmas UstreamLa Restinga villageEruption webcam

Update 19/01 - 20:57 UTC
- The magma does not want to be imprisoned as a third earthquake occurred today. At 20:10 a M 1.1 earthquake occurred at a depth of 19 km. Click here for the epicenter.

Update 19/01 - 20:37 UTC
Every hooked follower of this volcano eruption is always curious about the depth of the volcano vent. The latest session in December resulted in more than 150 meter. The new mission of the IEO Oceanographic ship Ramon Margalef which ended last week resulted in a depth of 130 meter. A lot of erupted material and a serious climb of the vent. Is this a lot. Yes, we think that the volcano vent has grown a lot and at this pace another 1 to 2 months are necessary to start more action in the water ..... if the volcano continues to erupt on the same location of course .... which does not like to be the case today!
Adapted Google translation of the most important parts of the original text below.

The bathymetric surveys of Ramon Margalef estimated that 145 million cubic meters of material was deposited on the seabed.
The bathymetry conducted last week by scientists of the Ramon Margalef research vessel belonging to the Spanish Oceanographic Institute (IEO), concluded that the vent (top of the underwater volcano) was at a depth of 130 meters .
The bathymetric surveys performed were carried out during the 10th and 11th January, and have also allowed us to appreciate a significant increase in volume, both the cone and deposits associated with the emission points of material. This increase in volume comes to cover almost the entire western escarpment submarine canyon that frames the emission points and volcanic deposits. These deposits run from the broadcast area to about 2,000 meters and are strangled in their mid to 950m deep, narrow canyon by acting as shock controller between two different storage areas: the area of ​​deposit of the upper and the alluvial fan.
The scientists on board of the Ramon Margalef have estimated that the total deposits reached 57 million cubic meters of alluvial fan to a volume of 88 million cubic meters, which is 145 million cubic meters of material deposited.
As for the evolution of the volcanic cone, the Ramon Margalef found that the earlier split vent does not exist anymore and that the volcano displayed again a single peak at coordinates: 27 º 37.18 'N, 17 º 59. 58'W
Also, the cone has changed its slope on the December uprising. Its slope at the east side has increased due in part to the increase in top height and lower the convexity of the cone, which could be attributed to deflation occurred in the period between the two bathymetry.

Image courtesy IEO

Original text as published by the Gobierno de Canarias
Los levantamientos batimétricos del Ramón Margalef estiman en 145 millones de metros cúbicos el material depositado en el fondo marino.
La batimetría realizada la semana pasada por los científicos del buque oceanográfico Ramón Margalef, perteneciente al Instituto Oceanográfico Español (IEO), ha establecido en 130 metros la profundidad a la que se encuentra la cima del volcán submarino. Así se lo han comunicado, esta mañana, los responsables de la campaña científica a la dirección del Plan de Protección Civil por Riesgo Volcánico (PEVOLCA).
Los levantamientos batimétricos efectuados fueron llevados a cabo durante los días 10 y 11 de enero, y también han permitido apreciar un aumento significativo de volumen, tanto del cono como de los depósitos asociados a los puntos de emisión de material. Este aumento de volumen llega a cubrir casi por completo el escarpe occidental del cañón submarino que enmarca los puntos de emisión y los depósitos volcánicos. Estos depósitos discurren desde la zona de emisión hasta unos 2.000 metros de profundidad y se ven estrangulados en su curso medio, a 950m de profundidad, por un estrechamiento del cañón que actúa como controlador de descarga entre dos zonas de depósito diferenciadas: la zona de depósito del curso alto y el cono de deyección.
Para el curso alto, los científicos del Ramón Margalef han estimado que el volumen total depositado alcanza 57 millones de metros cúbicos y para el cono de deyección un volumen de 88 millones de metros cúbicos, lo que supone 145 millones de metros cúbicos de material depositado.
En cuanto a la evolución del cono volcánico, el Ramón Margalef constató que el desdoblamiento de la cima que se registró en el levantamiento anterior no existe en estos momentos y de nuevo aparece una única cima en las coordenadas: 27º37.18'N ; 17º59.58'W.
Asimismo, el cono ha modificado su ladera respecto al levantamiento de diciembre. Su pendiente en el flanco Sureste ha aumentado debido en parte al aumento en altura de la cima y a la disminución de la convexidad del cono, que pudiera ser atribuido a una deflación ocurrida en el periodo comprendido entre las dos batimetrías.

Update 19/01 - 16:55 UTC
- We have the impression that a very weak colored stirring area survives in the surface waters above the vent (see U-stream webcam)
- 2 earthquakes have occurred this afternoon. The first one at 14:21 with a magnitude of 1.1 here. The second at 16:10 having a magnitude of 0.9 at a depth of 16 km with epicenter here.

Update 19/01 - 15:51 UTC
- After some heavy action today, the eruption suddenly went almost to background noise harmonic tremor. We think that it might have been a total collapse of the vent due to the hydromagmatic explosions earlier today. There is still a very minor signal left. Our expectations is the HT will gradually increase again the next 24 hours. If not and with an still active volcano pushing magma against the islands crevasses and lava tubes, a new set of earthquakes might occur. Of course, this is a volcano and we can only guess what he/she has in its mind.

Update 19/01 - 15:51 UTC
- In between 11:00 and 13:00 the highest HT was noticed since several weeks!, followed by a probable partial collapse of the vent.

Update 19/01 - 15:41 UTC
- Morning images of Joke Volta including a restingolita from yesterday evening (Salvamar Adhara).

January 19 2012 images Joke Volta

Update 19/01 - 11:38 UTC
- Yesterday's title is still correct - heavy smoking lava balloons (not too many tough)
- everybody has to same question : How deep is the vent at the moment ? Only IEO can answer. Mostly the results are suddenly showing up at the webpage of the Gobierno de los Canarias, the official website of Palo Rivera or in the IEO website in Madrid. Even the IGN is sometimes surprised about the appearing results.

Update 19/01 - 10:34 UTC
- NO earthquakes since midnight UTC
- very variable harmonic tremor with a lot of hydromagmatic bursts

harmonic tremor from midnight until 10:00 - image courtesy IGN

Update 18/01 - 16:41 UTC
- strong jacuzzi stirring at this moment. Some people report that they have seen smoking lava balloons.

Update 18/01 - 16:24 UTC
- The pictures below are being taken in the Restingolita info center who shows and explains material from the eruption. Informative boards but also technical instruments etc. The info center is a cooperation of all the Pevolca partners like the Gobierno, Cabildo, Ayuntamiento, IGN, IEO and CSIC.

Restingolita info center at La Restinga - click on the image to see them all

Update 18/01 - 10:51 UTC
- NO earthquakes
- Very strong harmonic tremor since 03:30 this morning. The jacuzzi action at sea level looks rather limited although even at dawn a huge brownish stain is visible.

Harmonic tremor from 00:00 until 07:30 - image courtesy IGN

Cabildo - telefonica webcam image at 11:13 UTC - colors have been slightly changed for contrast purposes

Update 17/01 - 15:43 UTC
- It is a long time ago that we have seen so strong harmonic tremor. A beautiful stain (see images below) and a strong Jacuzzi are the surface signs of this activity.
- Still NO earthquakes today
- Morning pictures Joke Volta.
- Joke received a parcel from Earthquake-report.com yesterday. Inside the parcel a Panasonic Lumix photo camera with a strong optical zoom than her own camera. This is of course no expensive Canon equipment, but hopefully our readers will enjoy the better eyes she will have from now on.

What a beautiful stain today

Update 17/01 - 10:06 UTC
- 1 earthquake along the Guimar, Tenerife coast (probably tectonic and part of a number of earthquakes occurring since a couple of weeks). This earthquake is not directly linked with the El Hierro eruption
- Variable harmonic tremor with a number of strong, probably hydromagmatic bursts also showing in what we see in the stain / jacuzzi this morning. In the middle of the greenish daily stain is a very huge brownish pumice area. Not a very defined jacuzzi. Again a day with a different pattern the the last couple of days.

Harmonic tremor on the rise - graph from midnight UTC until 10:00 - image courtesy IGN

Update 16/01 - 17:49 UTC
- An M 0.9 earthquake occurred at 18:19 UTC at a depth of 11 km to the South-West of Frontera
- Video recorded this morning by the cooperation in between Guardia Civil Helicopteres and Involcan. The exact time of recordings has not been given, but we expect that the faint action is caused by the partial collapse of the vent at 11:40. The stain however is quiet impressive. Video2 Video3

Update 16/01 - 17:49 UTC
- Regular strong Jacuzzi bursts (among the strongest of the last couple of days)

Update 16/01 - 15:12 UTC
- A partial collapse of the vent occurred at 11:40. At 11:40, the HT was still at medium strength but the many hydromagmatic explosions were an indication that a partial or complete collapse could happen. Harmonic tremor is minimal at this moment but has a tendency to increase again.

Harmonic tremor in between midnight and 15:00 UTC - image courtesy IGN

Update 16/01 - 14:00 UTC
- Morning images Joke Volta


Update 16/01 - 08:46 UTC
- NO earthquakes have occurred since midnight UTC
- Harmonic tremor decreased a lot since the peak yesterday evening. A possible reason may be a partly collapse of the vent (a process which happens regularly)
- Big stain with a defined jacuzzi area in a Las Calmas sea with a strong surf
- Below more pictures of the opening ceremony of the "Restingolita Info Center" at La Restinga. Click on the picture to go to the image series.

Opening Restingolita Info Center at La Restinga, El Hierro - Click on the images to see them all at full size

Update 15/01 - 23:55 UTC
- Finally 1 earthquake today, a M 1.4 earthquake at a depth of 19 km which happened at 22:43 UTC Epicenter here
- Around 10:00 harmonic tremor has started to rise gradually being at his strongest in the late evening hours.
- Hydromagmatic bursts can well be seen on the HT graph
- During the evening hours, the Jacuzzi was very well visible
- Yesterday was the inauguration of the RINSTINGOLITA INFO CENTER in La Restinga. All important people who were part of the emergency and follow-up actions on the volcano were present. The Info Center shows a lot of pictures and material from IGN, CSIC, IEO and INVOLCAN. Joke made some pictures during the opening.

- Joke Volta made here daily walk. Her pictures can be seen when clicking on the image below.

Update 15/01 - 10:07 UTC
- Harmonic tremor decreased a little during the night and stands rather low
- calm jacuzzi area but visible stain
- NO earthquakes since midnight

Update 14/01 - 17:16 UTC
- Based on the current and past position of the Ramon Margalef (gradually and slowly getting closer to the jacuzzi) we suppose that the Oceanographip ship is using one of his ROV's to have a close look to what is happening beneath the surface. The ROV's are able to navigate to deep depths and are manipulated out of a control room on board of the ship. Depending on the visibility, which may be good out of the current, we might be able to look at great video one of the coming days. If the ship isn't using his rov's ha may be taking samples of the different waters newt to the vent. Both possibilities are realistic.

Update 14/01 - 15:16 UTC
- Do you remember the horrible images of dead fish in the port of La Restinga during the early days of the eruption ? It was told at the time that the diving business, one of the most important of the island, would have to wait many years before marine life would recover. With an eruption still going on, the port of La Restinga seems to recover more quickly than estimated. We are still far from the pre-eruption marine life, but more and more signs are showing the recovery of the jewels of El Hierro. Jutta and Gunther, who own the Fan Diving Hierro diving company in La Restinga have been taking pictures on January 7 and 8 from the returning species.
- Joke Volta's morning pictures can be watched in the same group of pictures. Click on the images to open the series in full size.

Update 14/01 - 11:22 UTC
- Joke was at the CAP science center this morning with her daily questions : ). The technician in charge of CAP (everybody is welcome at the CAP science center) said that the Ramon Margalef continues his bathymetry mission along the coast. On Joke's question why the video from the last video underwater recording was not published, the man said that the quality was too bad. CSIC division Jaume Almera Institute from Barcelona has send another better camera with 2 lenses (1 horizontal and 1 vertical vs only 1 vertical at the older broken one). The Salvamar Adhara is currently out in (a much calmer) sea to make video footage which, we hope, may be far better in quality than the older one (the video we have included in the site with the many jellyfish)

Update 14/01 - 11:22 UTC
- Marinetraffic shows that the ship on the webcam is the Ramon Margalef. His mission ? Probably further Bathymetry
- Calima is hiding details on the sea surface. It is even difficult to see the ship(s). Besides the Ramon Margalef, we also think that the Salvamar Adhare is doing some additional measurements. We know from Joke that IGN had received another underwater camera from CSIC. A couple of days ago, some other underwater video was made, but the scientists kept it for themselves . Let's hope they will "share" today's catch.
- we had to cut the January 3 to January 7 pert from this article.

Update 14/01 - 10:08 UTC
- Not too many new events this morning, so we can almost copy / paste our latest update from yesterday :
* Continuing harmonic tremor
* calm jacuzzi area
* 1 earthquake since midnight
05:35 UTC - M 1.3 @16 km - epicenter here
a second earthquake occurred along the coast of Tenerife

Read also : Scientific paper reveals massive historic Tenerife volcano flank collapse
Read also: Economic impact on El Hierro and the Canary Islands if an aerial eruption would occur

Volcano Discussion Panel : If you are a person who wants to discuss and read about all aspects of volcanoes, this discussion panel might be a very good place to hang around. Especially if we start speculating about what to happen next, this panel is a great place to look at. Give it a chance.