Volcano activity of September 17, 2012 - Gamalama (Ternate, Indonesia) erupts on Sunday

This (almost) daily post intends to follow up the activity changes of volcanoes all over the world.
This post is written by geologist Richard Wilson who specializes in Volcano seismicity and Armand Vervaeck. Please feel free to tell us about new or changed activity if we haven't written about it. -

September 17, 2012 volcano activity

Rodger Wilson is back in the field (back-country) for about 3 weeks. Less seismicity reports during this period, but we will continue to inform you about volcano activity worldwide.

Little Sitkin, Alaska : Seismic activity remains moderately elevated. Satellite views of the volcano have been cloudy over the past 24 hours. AVO continues to monitor the seismicity closely and will issue further updates as conditions change.

Iliamna volcano, Alaska : Seismicity remains slightly above background. Satellite images of the volcano over the past 24 hours obscured by clouds. AVO has received no reports of unusual activity at the volcano. The current level of activity does not indicate an imminent or certain eruption. Seismic activity, along with gas emissions, appear to be declining gradually. A similar seismic swarm occurred at Iliamna Volcano in 1996-1997 and was not followed by eruptive activity. Prior to an eruption, AVO would expect to see a significant increase in earthquake activity beneath the volcano.

El Hierro volcano (Canary Islands) is entered in a new active period with hundreds of volcanic earthquakes. Far from an eruption though as the hypocenters are concentrated at 20 to 23 km depth

Fuego volcano (Guatemala) has returned to a normal behavior with regular explosions sending fine ash 400 to 800 meters in the sky. Lava rivers have disappeared completely.

Image courtesy Insivumeh - Activity subsided strongly at Fuego volcano - image taken earlier today

Mount Gamalama, a volcano on Ternate island (Indonesia), erupted on Sunday. Slowly moving lava could be seen at the top on Monday.  (see also video below)

Image courtesy Forumnusantara.net

Activity observed by satellites
VAAC reports that Lokon Empung and Batu Tara (Indonesia) are potentially dangerous for low flying aircraft.
NO VAAC bulletin mentioning explosions at Sakurajima today,
SO2 satellite imagery is showing plumes at Nevado del Ruiz, Kilauea and Mount Pagan.


  1. Little Sitkin is showing a "thrumb "about 1.5 hrs long and getting stronger starting about 19:30 ADT.