Volcano activity of March 8, 2013

This (almost) daily post intends to follow up the activity changes of volcanoes all over the world.
This post is written by geologist Rodger 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. -

March 8, 2013 volcano activity

KVERT reports no significant changes in eruptive behavior at the six active Kamchatkan volcanoes: Tolbachik (basaltic fissure eruption - slowly diminishing high amplitude volcanic tremor); Kizimen and Sheveluch (lava flow/dome extrusion w/ occasional vulcanian explosions/pyroclastic flows - moderate seismicity); Bezymianny (lava flow/dome extrusion w/occasional vulcanian explosions/pyroclastic flows - weak seismicity); Kliuchevskoi (strombolian explosions at summit - weak seismicity); and Karymsky (occasional strombolian/vulcanian explosions - weak seismicity) overnight.  Seismicity resulting from strong hydrothermal activity at Gorely volcano remains at a moderate level.  Recent MODIS satellite thermal imagery detected a multi-pixel hotspot associated with the newly emplaced (since November 2012) lava field at Plosky Tolbachik.
A somewhat late video (March 4) from Kamchatka volcano Plosky Tolbashik.


Frequent, small local earthquakes affect Makushin volcano (Aleutian arc) (station MSW) today.  Makushin has exhibited elevated seismicity for over the past year.

Colima volcano (Mexico) is very active today with frequent (and strengthening) explosions and rockfalls.  Activity has simmered somewhat at Popocatepetl volcano after yesterday's relatively strong eruption.  Exhalations, still enriched with ash, occur an average of once per hour.  The Popo seismogram shows frequent, relatively strong local earthquakes (early in record) with a few exhalation (explosion) signals later on the record.


Activity is relatively staid at the Guatemalan volcanoes today.  Small strombolian explosions occur at the summit of Fuego volcano (station FG3).  A moderate vulcanian explosion lifted volcanic ash to 3200 meters height at Santa Maria volcano early today.  Low-level volcanic tremor continues at Pacaya volcano (station PCG).  INSIVUMEH reported yesterday that fumarolic/phreatic activity (including small explosions) has recently increased at Pacaya and may be a prelude to magmatic activity at the volcano down the road.


The Nicaraguan volcanoes are at it again today!  Periods of banded volcanic tremor (and recently small volcano-tectonic events?) continue at San Cristobal volcano (station CRIN), magnitudes and numbers of earthquakes at Telica volcano (station TELN) remain elevated, volcanic tremor has become relatively strong and unsteady at Masaya volcano (station MASN), and amplitudes of volcanic earthquakes continue to be elevated at Concepcion volcano (station CONN) with recent episodes of low-level volcanic tremor.

Volcanic tremor remains elevated at San Miguel (El Salvador) (station VSM) (if you can see it through all the electronic interference on the records!), but volcanic earthquakes a have decreased at the volcano.

After a relatively strong earthquake swarm late yesterday, volcanic tremor has strengthened and become sustained at Nevado Del Ruiz volcano (Colombia) (station OLLZ) (the large events on record 20130812 are regional earthquakes).  Needless to say, INGEOMINAS personnel are watching this development closely!  After renewed ash emissions yesterday, activity is low at Galeras volcano (station CUVZ) today.  Frequent small earthquakes continue at Machin volcano (station CIMA).



Eruptive activity has stabilized at a moderate level at Tungurahua volcano (Ecuador) (station RETU) the past two days. When meteorological conditions permit, an ash laden plume has been seen rising to 2 km height over the peak.  Volcanic earthquakes and tremor continue to fluctuate between low and moderate levels at Reventador volcano (station CONE).

Volcanic tremor abruptly strengthened today at White Island volcano (New Zealand).  The White Island volcanocam shows no changes occurring at the surface in-conjunction with the increased internal activity.  Low-level volcanic tremor may be visible on seismograms recorded at Ruapehu volcano today.

Recent satellite imagery shows a modest-sized SO2-enriched plume drifting from Nevado Del Ruiz (unusual given the high level of seismicity at the volcano). Similar sized plumes drift also from Popocatepetl, Ambrym (Vanuatu), Rinjani (Rokatenda?)(Java), and Nyiragongo (DRC) volcanoes.  Recent MODIS satellite thermal imagery detected multi-pixel thermal anomalies at Santiaguito (Santa Maria volcano), Etna (Italy) and Tolbachik volcanoes.


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