Volcano news - Archive Nr. 16

For the latest part of this report - Click here

Manaro Voui, Ambae, Vanuatu (Philippa)
As reported yesterday on Earthquake-Report.com, Manaro Voui volcano, also known as Lombenben and Aoba, has begun a new active phase in the past few days.

The images below show eruptive activity on the night of 25th March and the heavy ash fall on the neighbouring island of Pentecost, which is 60 km away from Ambae island. Strong winds blew the volcanic ash this distance.

via Dan McGarry (@dailypostdan)

Yasur, Tanna Island, Vanuatu (Philippa)
Thermal cameras are great for more clearly being able to see the definition in an eruption plume at a volcano, particular for relatively small-scale, Strombolian-type eruptions with pyroclasts (hot rocks). The imagery below was shot at such a volcano - Yasur.

via Benjamin Simons (@dread_rocks)

Guatemalan volcanoes (Philippa)
Guatemala is not a country that I have visited (yet), but one that all my volcanology friends rave about. Seeing this image (below), we can see why. This is the view from Pacaya volcano looking across to three other volcanoes: Fuego, Acatenango, and Agua. Beautiful!

via Challen Willemsen (@challenguate)

....and here's a different view of Volcan Fuego, taken from the nearby city of Antigua.

via Henry Soderlund (@henrysoderlund) / Angel Borrayo

Sabancaya, Peru (Philippa)
Sabancaya volcano continues to erupt. The image (below) was taken on 22 March during field work being conducted by the volcanology research group from the University of Liverpool.

via Tornillo Scientific (@Tornillo_Sci) / Volcanology Liverpool (@VolcanoLiver)

Mount Merapi, Java, Indonesia (Philippa)
Mount Merapi is not currently erupting, but has been showing signs recently of re-awakening. More multi-parameter (i.e. multi-sensor) equipment has this week been installed on the flanks of the volcano to supplement the current network. These additional locations of data capture will hopefully allow (Indonesian volcano monitoring agency) PVMBG to earlier detect any precursory activity so that any future evacuations can be instigated at the right time.

Mount Merapi last erupted in 2010. Several nearby villages were destroyed by pyroclastic density currents (avalanches of hot volcanic gases, ash and rocks) and lahars, and over 350,000 people from surrounding areas had to be evacuated. The city of Yogyakarta, which is almost 30 km away, was greatly affected by volcanic ash fall.

Image taken 23rd March 2018 - via BPPTKG (@BPPTKG)

Mount Agung, Bali, Indonesia (Philippa)
As reported previously here on Earthquake-Report.com, the eruption status of Mount Agung has been downgraded from Alert Level 4 to 3 this past week due to a decrease in activity relative to November/December 2017.

However, as this aerial image taken today by a brave (or fool-hardy) pilot shows, the crater area is still very much active. In addition to the continued fumarolic (steam-venting) activity, we see here that the crater is filled with lava, which was not the case until just prior to last year's eruptions. What is not yet clear is whether a new lava dome is growing.

Bali is still safe to visit. However, tourists are reminded not to venture within the exclusion zone around this volcano, which is on the eastern side of the island.

via Nate RM (https://www.instagram.com/nate_rm/)

March 27, 2018

Vanuatu, Ambae volcano
The image below is from 3 days ago and shows another very active sequence has started. People returned to the island are again complaining about difficulty breathing and may be have to be evacuated another time soon.
The brown color of the small lake in the foreground is also totally different than before the new active period. To be followed the coming days.

March 25, 2018

USA (Philippa)
If you live in the U.S. or have access to The Weather Channel outside of the U.S., look out for physical volcanologist Alexa Van Eaton (@volcaniclastic) at 12 noon Eastern Time today talking about volcanic hail and volcanic lightning.

via The Weather Channel (@weatherchannel)

Mount Ijen, Eastern Java, Indonesia (Philippa)
The tourist viewing areas at the summit crater of Mount Ijen, a volcano known for its sulfur deposits and blue sulfurous 'flames', have temporarily been closed until further notice due to a slight increase in volcanic gas emissions detected.

Local residents were also temporarily evacuated as a precautionary measure last week after 24 inhabitants were treated for inhalation of the toxic volcanic gases, but have now been allowed to return home.

The status of the volcano remains at Normal.

via Sutopo Purwo Nugroho (@Sutopo_PN)

Copahue, Chile-Argentina border (Philippa)
Here at Earthquake-Report.com we love it when other volcanologists post photos from their field work. Copahue, where several visiting scientists are currently doing some analysis on the volcanic gas emissions, is looking resplendent. The volcano is currently on a Yellow alert.

via Marcello Bitetto (@marcellobitetto) - taken on 20 March 2018


Shinmoedake, Kirishimayama, Kyushu, Japan (Philippa)
Following on from the update on Shinmoedake in the latest Weekly Volcanic Activity Report (see below), here are a couple of images shot less than 24 hours ago, in which it is speculated that there is a 2nd eruption vent. It is not entirely clear though if this is the case, or if the wind has just blown over an older plume emission. We shall see verification over the coming days.

via James Reynolds (@EarthUncutTV)

Kilauea volcano, Big Island, Hawaii, USA (Philippa)
In the latest feature of the USGS / Hawaiian Volcano Observatory's weekly blog - Volcano Watch - news about how the observatory has this week been trialing some radar equipment as another form of monitoring the levels of the lava lake in Halema`uma`u Crater. The radar equipment is on loan from the volcanology research group at the University of Cambridge, which has previously used this kit at Erebus volcano in Antarctica.

Radar works on the principal of firing a pulse of a known wave velocity to an object or feature, and measuring the two-way time, i.e. the time for the pulse to hit the feature and bounce back to the receiver, in order to calculate the distance to that feature (Think of the simple equation: distance = velocity [i.e. speed in a particular direction] x time). In the case of the lava lake within the summit of Kilauea, if the radar equipment were at a fixed position on the crater edge, we would expect there to be a longer two-way time and greater distance if the surface of the lava lake were to fall, and a shorter two-way time and shorter distance if the surface of the lava lake were to rise.

You can read the full Volcano Watch article here:
USGS - Hawaiian Volcano Observatory - Volcano Watch (22 March 2018) - Antarctic-volcano radar system visits Halema`uma`u

Image via C. Oppenheimer (@ultraplinian) / USGS Volcanoes (@USGSVolcanoes)

Mount Agung, Bali, Indonesia (Philippa)
Those of you who have followed this volcano page on Earthquake-Report.com for a while will remember that Mount Agung on the east side of the Indonesian island of Bali made headlines last year. We can report that the activity has reduced considerably since that time. The alert level is now down to 3 (on a 0-5 scale), and that all evacuees have now been allowed to return home.

The volcanic seismicity is currently stable and there are now only occasional emissions of water vapor. This does not mean though that it is safe to visit the summit, and tourists are reminded to stay outside of the exclusion zone around Agung.

via Sutopo Purwo Nugroho (@Sutopo_PN)

Mount Teide, Tenerife, Canary Islands (Philippa)
Today's volcano fact of the day is brought to us by Simon Carn (@simoncarn):

Sakurajima volcano, Kagoshima, Kyushu, Japan (Philippa)
For today's vintage image of a historical eruption - Sakurajima volcano in 1914.

via Mood: Vintage (@moodvintage)

Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: 14 to 20 March 2018
Via Smithsonian Institution - Global Volcanism Program / US Geological Survey

Ambae | Vanuatu
On 18 March the Vanuatu Geohazards Observatory (VGO) reported that eruptive activity at Ambae's Lake Voui during February-March was similar to activity observed at the end of October 2017, but with more sustained ash emissions from explosions at the vent. The ongoing ash-and-gas emissions were impacting local villages, prompting VGO to raise the Alert Level to 3 (on a scale of 0-5) and to warn residents and tourists to stay outside of the Danger Zone defined as a 3-km radius around the active vent in Lake Voui. A news article noted that ashfall was reported in the NW, W, SW, and S parts of the island.

Kick'em Jenny | North of Grenada
The University of the West Indies (UWI) Seismic Research Centre (SRC) and the National Disaster Management Agency (NaDMA) reported that during 12-15 March seismicity at Kick'em Jenny significantly decreased. The Alert Level remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-colour scale) with a 5 km maritime exclusion zone.

Kikai | Japan
The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) reported that one small-amplitude, short-duration volcanic tremor was detected on 16 March at Satsuma Iwo-jima, a subaerial part of Kikai's NW caldera rim. The number of volcanic earthquakes increased on 19 March, prompting JMA to raise the Alert Level to 2 (on a 5-level scale), and then decreased the next day. The report noted increased thermal activity since February, with occasional visual observations of incandescence.

Kirishimayama | Kyushu (Japan)
JMA reported that the eruption of Shinmoedake (Shinmoe Peak), a stratovolcano of the Kirishimayama volcano group, continued during 13-19 March. Lava effusion possibly stopped on 9 March, though the lava flow on the NW flank continued to advance. An explosion at 14:13 on 15 March generated a grey-white plume that rose 2.1 km above the crater and ejected material 1 km from the crater. A high number of volcanic earthquakes continued to be recorded, in addition to many low-frequency earthquakes with shallow hypocentres. Volcanic tremor was occasionally recorded. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-5).

Stromboli | Aeolian Islands (Italy)
(Monitoring agency) INGV reported that during 12-17 March activity at Stromboli was at normal levels, characterized by explosive activity and gas emissions from two vents (N1 and N2) in Area N and two vents in Area C-S (C and S2). Explosions at N1 ejected lapilli, bombs, and sometimes ash less than 120 m high, and less intense explosions at N2 emitted ash no higher than 80 m. The frequency of explosions in Area N was 3-8 events / hour. Continuous gas emissions rose from C. Explosions at S2 emitted ash no higher than 80 m at a rate of 2-5 explosions / hour. A high-energy explosive sequence began at vent C at 20:27 on 19 March and lasted about 40 seconds. The first explosion ejected ash and incandescent material that fell in a radial distribution around the crater. Two subsequent explosions ejected incandescent material as high as 80 m. Tephra fell along the Sciara del Fuoco, towards the NE parts of the island. At 20:28 an explosion at N2 ejected lapilli to an altitude of 100-120 m above the summit.

March 25, 2018

Kilauea volcano, Big Island, Hawaii, USA (Philippa)
This week marks the 10th anniversary of the lava lake within Halema`uma`u Crater at the summit of Kilauea volcano coming into being. I happened to be volunteering with the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory at that time. The levels of the volcanic gas emissions, particularly water vapour and sulfur dioxide, had been abnormally high during the 5 months beforehand. In fact, the Crater Rim Drive had had to be closed beyond the observatory and the Jagger Museum due to the noxious vog (mixture of fog and volcanic gases) about a month beforehand. There had also been increased seismicity in a very localized position on one side of the Crater, but none of us fully understood why until we came into the observatory one morning and saw a row of fumaroles (steam vents) at the far end.

via Philippa Demonte (@fLip_uk) / USGS HVO

Halema`uma`u Crater at the summit of Kilauea volcano - image taken on 5th March 2008 before the new vent opened up

We came in to the observatory one morning in mid-March 2008 and saw that this row of fumaroles had opened up overnight.

Over the next few nights (always at nighttime) there were a series of explosions which opened up the fumaroles into a small vent. One such explosion was powerful enough to blow out a bolder about the size of a person, which destroyed what had previously been an overlook for tourists. There was also material known as Pele's hair, which indicated to us that there was lava / magma somewhere down inside the new vent, although we could not see it then, as this material is formed from an interaction between lava and surface winds.

via Philippa Demonte (@fLip_uk) / USGS HVO

One of the boxes which scientists at HVO had to go and empty every day. Used for seeing how much ash fall there was from the vent, and for collecting other volcanic material erupted, including Pele's hair and Pele's tears (late-March 2008)

The observatory decided thereafter to install a video camera in the obs tower to capture this early activity, now expanded to a permanent network of webcams (USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory webcams) Over the next few weeks we watched cycles of crater wall material falling into the vent chocking it, building up pressure, then having brown, ashy 'throat clearing' explosions, followed by white vapor plumes.

via Philippa Demonte (@fLip_uk) / USGS HVO

The brown plume at the new Halema`uma`u Crater vent was caused by loose material from the crater wall falling in, choking the vent, building up pressure, and then blowing this old, ashy material out again. (Image take end-March 2008)

White plume (mostly water vapor) phase after the fumeroles opened up to form a small vent in the side of Halema`uma`u Crater at the summit of Kilauea volcano (late-March 2008). Just to the left of the plume, at the edge of the crater, you might be able to make out the fence of the old tourist overlook area, which was hit by a 2m-long boulder.

Several other observations that we made further confirmed the likely presence of a lava lake just beneath the surface, including footage caught one night (using the night shot function on a video cam) of pyroclasts (hot rocks) being spat out by the vent, and then a peep of red appearing for a split second whilst on a helicopter overflight.

via Philippa Demonte (@fLip_uk) / USGS HVO

It was not until during a USGS helicopter overflight in mid-May 2008 that we were able to get our first confirmed observation of lava within the new Halema`uma`u Crater vent

Meanwhile, further down the East Rift Zone (ERZ) Pu`u O`o Crater was also emitting high levels of volcanic gases, and lava had started to emerge from channels near the coast within the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. We were called upon by Civil Defense to map the extent of these flows and assess the safety of the tourist viewing area on a daily basis.

via Philippa Demonte (@fLip_uk) / USGS HVO

One of HVO's volcanologists fishing for lava from an active tunnel further down the East Rift Zone on Kilauea volcano. This is a task which they continue to do on a weekly basis. Once fished out with a cable hammer, the lava is immediately quenched in a tin of cold water to try and preserve its geochemical composition, and then sent for analysis to detect any changes over time.

The biggest hazard, other than the flows themselves, was (and still is) the laze, which is hydrochloric acid steam produced by the chemical interaction of hot lava flowing into cool sea water.

I am so grateful to the staff of HVO for graciously allowing me to participate. They said that they learned as much from my observations and the questions that I asked out of shear curiosity as I learned from them, and they encouraged me on my return to the UK to go back to university as a mature student to study geophysics and volcanology.

To celebrate this 10th anniversary, one of HVO's geologists, Dr Matt Patrick, did this live webcast from the crater rim. Enjoy!

via USGS Volcanoes (https://www.facebook.com/USGSVolcanoes/)


Steamboat Geyser, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA (Philippa)
A rare geyser eruption occurred at Steamboat Geyser at Yellowstone National Park last week, believed to have started around 05.30 a.m. on 15th March 2018. This particular geyser has impressively large (up to ~115m / 380 ft.) continuous jetting eruptions similar to Old Faithful, but only for a day or so at a time, and then with decades in-between eruptions (although the last one was in early August 2013...and I missed it even though Yellowstone was my research field site at that time, because I was moving house that week). The reason for this longer repose time (the time in-between eruptions) compared to other geysers at Yellowstone is because of its bigger underground water reservoir, which takes a longer time to refill and then be heated geothermally by the surrounding bedrock.

Steamboat Geyser is not in an easily accessible part of Yellowstone, and currently the roads are snowbound. Luckily for us for though, one of the National Park Services staff spotted the plume later in the day on 15th March, and then one of the park geologists was able to capture this footage next day.

via USGS Volcanoes (https://www.facebook.com/USGSVolcanoes/)


Bledug Kuwu mud volcano, Java, Indonesia (Philippa)
A friend of ours in Indonesia has posted this fantastic footage of large bubble bursts at Bledug Kuwu mud volcano. Such features are not true volcanoes; they do not erupt lava or volcanic gases, but rather are caused by the release of other gases from beneath the Earth's surface, including methane, through mineral-rich solutions which turn the surrounding soil and bedrock into mud.

via Oystein L. Andersen (@OysteinLAnderse)

March 21, 2018

Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: 7 to 13 March 2018
Via Smithsonian Institution - Global Volcanism Program / US Geological Survey

Kick 'em Jenny | North of Grenada
The University of the West Indies (UWI) Seismic Research Centre (SRC) and the National Disaster Management Agency (NaDMA) reported that on 12 March the Alert Level for Kick 'em Jenny was raised to Orange (the second highest level on a four-color scale) due to non-specified increased activity. The report reminded marine operators of the 5-km maritime exclusion zone.

Kirishimayama | Kyushu (Japan)
According to news articles, ash plumes from Shinmoedake (Shinmoe peak), a stratovolcano of the Kirishimayama volcano group, caused the cancelation of about 80 flights in and out of Kagoshima airport on 6 March. JMA reported that daily explosions during 6-13 March generated ash plumes that generally rose 3 km above the crater rim, though an ash plume on 10 March rose as high as 4.5 km. Explosions also ejected tephra that fell 700-1,800 m from the vent. Ashfall was reported in a wide area including in the prefectures of Nagasaki, Kumamoto, Miyazaki, and Kagoshima. An explosion at 1558 on 9 March rattled structures in the Kagoshima and Miyazaki prefectures. Satellite images showed an increase in the crater diameter from 550 m on 7 March to 650 m on 9 March. During overflights on 9 March observers noted white plumes rising from the margins of the lava covering the crater floor, from lava flows on the S flank, and from newly forming lava flows on the NW flank. The volume of erupted lava was an estimated 14 million cubic meters. The NW lava flow had advanced 226 m by 13 March. A high number of volcanic earthquakes continued to be recorded, in addition to many low-frequency earthquakes with shallow hypocenters. Volcanic tremor was continuous from 1 March until 1536 on 8 March; afterwards the signals had small amplitudes and were intermittent. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-5).

Turrialba | Costa Rica
RSN and OVSICORI-UNA reported that a new eruptive phase at Turrialba began at 2240 on 6 March with minor ash emissions that rose 500 m above the vent rim and drifted NW. The activity intensified around midnight, with dense ash emissions and the ejection of incandescent blocks, and remained elevated almost until 0300 on 7 March. At 1740 activity again intensified; emissions with an increased volume of ash was recorded by the webcam from 1801-1820 drifting W. OVSICORI-UNA reported that events at 1515 on 8 March and 0920 on 13 March generated ash plumes that rose 300 m and drifted SW and NW, respectively.


Shinmoendake volcano, Japan
James Reynolds @EarthUncutTV : Made it to Kirishima and hotel has great view of Shinmoedake steaming away about 7km to my north.
Some spectacular video's coming ... ? At least James is ready to record them.

Shinmoendake on March 6 as recorded by James Reynolds

Kirishima volcano group as seen from an airplane

Kilauea volcano, Hawaii, USA
Significant changes on the 61G flow field today... still a number of small breakouts on the Pali this morning... but a very large flow was discovered within about a half-mile of the Pu'u 'O'o vent. Huge plates of hardened pahoehoe lava were floated on a river of lava that snaked its way several hundred yards downslope. Spectacular! Raggedy Ann Ducky joined Leilani, Bruce Omori and me as Paradise Helicopters' outstanding pilot, Sean Regehr flew us stealthily over the hot liquid rock... mahalo Sean! And don't forget... we'll have lots of interesting personalities on the upcoming "VolcanoScapes" series entitled "Hot Seat Hawaii!" Check out our brand new website hotseathawaii.com and meet the cast.

March 8, 2018 Big Spillway Flow from Mick Kalber on Vimeo.

March 13, 2018

Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: 28 February to 5 March 2018
Via Smithsonian Institution - Global Volcanism Program / US Geological Survey

Ambae | Vanuatu
Based on satellite and webcam observations, the Wellington VAAC reported that during 4-6 March ash plumes from Ambae rose to altitudes of 3.7-4.6 km (12,000-15,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted NE and N.

Kadovar | Papua New Guinea
According to the Darwin VAAC a pilot observed an ash plume from Kadovar on 2 March drifting SE at an altitude of 4 km (13,000 ft) a.s.l.

Kirishimayama | Kyushu (Japan)
JMA reported that volcanic earthquakes at Shinmoedake (Shinmoe peak), a stratovolcano of the Kirishimayama volcano group, increased during 24-25 February. Volcanic tremor began to be recorded at 0815 on 1 March and intensified within a few hours. Residents in Takahara-machi, 12 km E (Miyazaki prefecture), reported ashfall at 1100; poor weather conditions prevented visual observations of the volcano. Later that day a small eruption was confirmed. Ashfall was reported in the Takahara-cho neighborhood, 12 km E (Miyazaki prefecture), around 1615. The eruption was observed at 1707 during an overflight. The sulfur dioxide flux was 5,500 tons/day, but then decreased to 2,200 tons/day on 2 March. During 2-3 March gray ash plumes rose as high as 1 km above the crater, and ash fell in Takahara-cho on 3 March. Ash plumes rose 400 m on 4 March. Explosive events on 6 March generated ash plumes that rose 2.3 km. During an overflight observers noted new lava on the E side of the crater, and plumes rising from both the center of the crater and an area on the N side. Ashfall was confirmed over a wide area from Kirishima prefecture and Kagoshima prefecture to the S, to Miyakonojo city (Miyazaki prefecture) to the E. A high number of volcanic earthquakes continued to be recorded. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-5).

Kusatsu-Shiranesan | Honshu (Japan)
JMA reported that during 26 February-5 March the number of volcanic earthquakes recorded at the Kusatsu-Shiranesan complex remained elevated. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a 5-level scale).

Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: 21 to 27 February 2018
Via Smithsonian Institution - Global Volcanism Program / US Geological Survey

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Kadovar | Papua New Guinea
RVO reported that lava continued to flow from the SE Coastal Vent resulting in the connection of a reemerged lava island to the coast of Kadovar within a few days of the 1 February collapse. During 14-22 February continuous plumes of white vapor rose from both Main Crater and SE Coastal Vent, punctuated by dense ash emissions from both areas during 16 and 20-22 February and occasional booming noises. Ash plumes rose 370 m above the island and drifted SE, though on 22 February the winds blew the plumes N and NW. Incandescence from both areas was visible on 22 February. A sulfur odor was noticed by residents on Blup Blup (15 km N) on 16 and 22 February.

Mayon | Luzon (Philippines)
PHIVOLCS reported that during 21-27 February activity at Mayon continued to be characterized by daily lava effusion from the summit crater, lava fountains on most days, steam-and-ash emissions, advancing lava flows on the flanks, and pyroclastic flows. Weak and sporadic lava fountaining events each lasted between 2 and 77 minutes, and were sometimes accompanied by rumbling sounds audible within a 10-km radius. Each day there were 1-21 pyroclastic flows generated by lava-collapse events traveling as far as 5 km down the Mi-isi, Bonga-Buyuan, and Basud drainages. The Alert Level remained at 4 (on a 0-5 scale) and the public was warned to remain outside of the Danger Zone defined as an area within an 8-km radius.

Sangay | Ecuador
The Washington VAAC reported that on 25 February emissions from Sangay with minor ash content rose to an altitude of 6.1 km (20,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted almost 170 km NE.

Semeru | Eastern Java (Indonesia)
According to the Darwin VAAC ash plumes from Semeru rose to an altitude of 4.6 km (15,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted almost 20 km ESE and WSW. A thermal anomaly preceded the emissions.

Sinabung | Indonesia
Based on observations by PVMBG, satellite and webcam images, and model data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 25-26 February ash plumes from Sinabung rose 3.4-3.7 km (11,000-12,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SW and W.

February 4

Volcano Cup, World (Philippa)
All credit to former Earthquake-Report.com scribe Dr Janine Krippner (@janinekrippner) for organising the epic #VolcanoCup battle on Twitter. The competition was to help raise awareness about volcanic activity, hazards, risk, and preparedness around the globe. In a light-hearted, but informative way this saw volcanologists going head-to-head whilst graciously allowing also for public participation.

In a nail-biting final it came down to Taupo (New Zealand) versus Krakatau. The force from Middle Earth was strong, but the winner is...

...(seismic drum beats)...

...the volcano which appears on this bank note...

Screen Shot 2018-03-03 at 11.30.37
...and which generated such a loud, explosive eruption in August 1883, that it burst people's eardrums and was heard over several thousand kilometers away in Australia and Mauritius...

...and which caused an immediate global climate change due to the ejected ash reaching the stratosphere and partially blocking sunlight, leading to cooler temperatures and vividly colourful sunsets...

Edvard Munch's 'Skriket' (The Scream), which was painted in 1893, 10 years after this VEI 6 explosive eruption, is thought to accurately depict the vividly colourful sunsets, in this case in Norway, caused by volcanic ash in the stratosphere.

Edvard Munch's 'Skriket' (The Scream), which was painted in 1893, 10 years after this VEI 6 explosive eruption, is thought to accurately depict the vividly colourful sunsets, in this case in Norway, caused by volcanic ash in the stratosphere.

....the winner is....

via Mike Cassidy (@MikeVolc)

Screen Shot 2018-03-03 at 11.44.10

via Flydime (https://www.flickr.com/people/98073722@N00)

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KRAKATAU, Indonesia

As you can see from this last image (above), Krakatau still has periods of dome-forming and Strombolian-style eruptions, with the most recent activity being about a year ago.

Here are the full results from each round of Volcano Cup.

via Janine Krippner (@janinekrippner)

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Mount St. Helens, Washington State, USA (Philippa)
The aerial photos below may not look like anything special, but the significance is that they were unknowingly taken less than 2 months before the May 18, 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens.

via Public Land Lover (@publiclandlvr)

Screen Shot 2018-03-03 at 12.21.50

The images were only just found late last year stuffed inside a greetings card when the owner was sorting through their late grandparents' belongings.

U.S. Geological Survey scientists had known from the seismic, deformation, and gas monitoring around this same time that the volcano was in an active state of inflation, causing the ediface to bulge slightly. What no-one could foresee though was that instead of erupting upwards like most volcanoes, Mount St Helens erupted sideways. A landslide on its flanks rapidly depressurised the primed volcanic system, triggering a lateral (sideways) blast. Volcanologist David A. Johnson, who was manning an observation post 6 miles away at the time, was tragically killed by this eruption, and vegetation in this direction was devastatingly flattened.

Laguna del Maule, Chile / Argentina (Philippa)
The news story below is one that makes me very happy, as it is a location that I spent time at in November 2016 with the people in the feature helping them to collect field data.

Cientificos chilenos y argentinos elaboraran primer mapa de peligros de un volcan fronterizo desde la creacion de la Red Nacional de Vigilancia Volcanica - (SERNAGEOMIN, 2 March 2018)

Screen Shot 2018-03-03 at 13.05.08

Volcanologists, cartographers, and other scientists from monitoring agencies SERNAGEOMIN (Chile), SEGEMAR (Argentina), and the U.S. Geological Survey have been working together for the past 5 years to collect raw field data on the Laguna del Maule volcanic complex. From this field evidence, it is clear that there have been at least 21 historical eruptions at this site, which straddles the Chilean and Argentinian borders, probably more.

The scientists from the three agencies + assisting universities are now putting this evidence together to create a cohesive, standardized volcanic hazard map for the region.

Current monitoring data indicate that there is inflation due to magma underneath one end of this main lake. If the magma and water were to come into contact with each other, this would generate highly explosive phreato-magmatic eruptions similar to those seen last year at Bogoslof volcano in Alaska, USA.

In the case of Laguna del Maule, such eruptions would generate multiple volcanic hazards, including ash plumes traversing both sides of the national border, pyroclastic density currents (avalanches of hot volcanic gases, ash, and debris), and lahars (debris floods) with long run-out distances along valleys.

The volcanic hazard map being created based on the geological evidence from previous eruptions will be vital for preparedness upfront of any new eruption, not just by communities, Civil Defense, and the emergency services, but also for utility companies, as several vital hydro-electric power stations are located along nearby valleys.

Some of the Chilean and Argentinian scientists and cartographers currently working on the volcano hazard map for the Laguna del Maule complex

Some of the Chilean and Argentinian scientists and cartographers currently working on the volcano hazard map for the Laguna del Maule complex

via SERNAGEOMIN (@sernageomin)

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Shinmoedake, Japan + Kilauea, Hawaii, USA (Philippa)
Webcams allow all of you to be 'armchair volcanologists'. Such observations, which you can make from anywhere around the world with an internet connection, are as useful as actual observations in the field.

This Twitter post from James Reynolds made me laugh though, as it reminds me of one time 10 years ago. Soon after returning to the UK from a volunteering stint at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, I was looking at the internet feed from one the Halema`uma`u Crater webcams on Kilauea volcano and noticed that, as with James's image (above) of Shinmoedake volcano, the lens was dirty. So I took a screen shot and e-mailed it to the volcanologists at HVO, jokingly asking them when they were going to clean the lens. It turned out that my screen shot had captured not just the image, but the exact time of a small explosive eruption from the crater vent!

So, next time that you look at a volcano webcam and you see crap obscuring the view through the lens, do not dismiss this as being nothing. It could be that you are actually witnessing an eruption.

Yellowstone, Wyoming, USA (Philippa)
How is this for happy coincidences? One of the HVO volcanologists that I was referring to in the article above, Dr Mike Poland, is now the Chief Scientist at Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, which will be hosting a live question and answer session for the public. Log in to the link (below) on 7th March at 11:30 a.m. mountain time to pose your questions about Yellowstone:

U.S. Geological Survey Volcanoes - Link for Yellowstone Volcano Observatory live question and answer session - 7th March

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Yellowstone also happens to be where I conducted field work between 2012-2014 whilst doing research into the infrasound (sounds at frequencies below our human level of hearing) generated when geysers erupt. Let me know if you ever have any questions on this. One of the three geysers I was studying, Sawmill Geyser, has unfortunately stopped erupting, but Great Fountain Geyser has spectacular eruptions twice a day, and Lone Star Geyser erupts regularly every 3 hours or so.

Great Fountain Geyser - via Philippa Demonte (@fLip_uk)

Great Fountain Geyser - Yellowstone - Oct 2012

Copahue, Chile (Philippa)
Ascent of the Copahue volcano crater, 28th February 2018.

via Valentina (@valecaviahue)

March 3, 2018

Mount Bosavi, New Guinea, Papua New Guinea

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February 28

Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: 14 to 20 February 2018
Via Smithsonian Institution - Global Volcanism Program / US Geological Survey

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Mayon | Luzon (Philippines)
PHIVOLCS reported that during 14-20 February daily activity at Mayon continued to be characterized by lava effusion from the summit crater, rockfalls, lava fountains, steam emissions, advancing lava flows on the flanks, and pyroclastic flows. Weak and sporadic lava fountaining events each lasted between 5 and 239 minutes, and were sometimes accompanied by rumbling sounds audible with a 10-km radius. Heavy rainfall on 14 February caused lahars in the Anoling drainage, and sediment-laden streams in most channels where pyroclastic flow deposits were emplaced. During 16-17 February lava fountains were 200-500 m tall and generated steam plumes that drifted SW, WSW, and NW. A lava-fountaining event that began at 0103 on 17 February lasted for 12 hours and 18 minutes. Lava flows 3.3 km, 4.5 km, and 900 m long in the Mi-isi (S), Bonga (SE), and Basud (E) drainages, respectively, continued to be active. Pyroclastic flows traveled 4.2-4.6 km in the Mi-isi, Bonga, and Basud drainages. The Alert Level remained at 4 (on a 0-5 scale) and the public was warned to remain outside of the Danger Zone, defined as an area within an 8-km radius.

Volcano index photo Sinabung
PVMBG reported that at 0853 on 19 February a large explosive event at Sinabung generated a dark gray plume with a high volume of ash that rose at least to 16.8 km (55,000 ft) a.s.l. According to the Darwin VAAC, ash plumes that were identified in satellite images, recorded by webcams, and reported by PVMBG continued to rise throughout the day to 13.7 km (45,000 ft) a.s.l. and drift 320 km NNW. Parts of the ash plumes drifted in multiple directions at lower altitudes. As many as 10 pyroclastic flows were observed, traveling as far as 4.9 km SSE and 3.5 km E. Ash and tephra as large as pebbles fell in areas downwind including Simpang Empat (7 km SE), the Namanteran district, Pqyung (5 km SSW), Tiganderket (7 km W), Munthe, Kutambaru (20 km NW), Perbaji (4 km SW), and Kutarayat. Conditions in five districts were so dark that visibility was only about 5 m. Some residents outside of the evacuation zone self-evacuated. The event was possibly the largest since the beginning of the current eruption, which began in September 2013. The Alert Level remained at 4 (on a scale of 1-4), with a general exclusion zone of 3 km and extensions of 7 km on the SSE sector, 6 km in the ESE sector, and 4 km in the NNE sector.

February 23

Volcan de Fuego, Guatemala (Philippa)
Students on the MSc Volcanology degree programme at the University of Bristol (UK) are currently on fieldwork at Volcan de Fuego. The image (below), taken by their supervisor, shows one of the eruptions that they observed yesterday.

via Matthew Watson (@Matthew_Watson)

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Agung volcano, Bali, Indonesia (Philippa)
An interesting article has emerged entitled 'The Costs of Waiting For A Volcano To Erupt - by Dr Peter Ward (USGS) - forbes.com - Feb 16, 2018

(Click on the link above to read)

Although the eruption monitoring, contingency plans, and subsequent evacuations from around Agung volcano on the Indonesian island of Bali were remarkably well handled, with no loss of life, the eventual eruptions have had a massively negative impact financially, not just for the Balinese, but to the Indonesian gross domestic product (GDP) for this financial year.

The article highlights that even though it was only a tiny, localised area on the east of Bali that has been directly affected by Agung's eruptions, the financial impact has been due to compounding factors such as the costs of evacuation and maintaining evacuation centres, loss off livelihood whilst people are in an evacuation situation, loss of income from tourists cancelling their holidays to Bali, and the cost to the aviation industry during the two days that the main international airport had to be closed due to the volcanic ash plume.

Financial implications are a major factor for local and national government decision makers before and during crisis situations.

Sinabung, Sumatra, Indonesia (Philippa)
Following the larger than normal explosive eruption at Mount Sinabung on 19th February, caused possibly by magma mixing/mingling and lava dome collapse, posters have been issued to local residents with health advice.

Volcanic ash can cause irritation to the eyes, respiratory problems, which long-term can cause a lung condition known as silicosis, and fluorosis (damage to the teeth) and diarrhoea from drinking ash-contaminated water.

via Sutopo Purwo Nugroho (@Sutopo_PN)

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Residents from areas outside of the 5 km exclusion zone around Sinabung, which were evacuated as a precaution, have now been allowed to return home. However, extensive damage has been caused to crops due to ashfall and pyroclastic density currents.

via Sutopo Purwo Nugroho (@Sutopo_PN)

Crops damaged by ashfall and PDCs during the 19th February eruption of Sinabung, Sumatra, Indonesia

Crops damaged by ashfall and PDCs during the 19th February eruption of Sinabung, Sumatra, Indonesia

Merapi, Java, Indonesia (Philippa)
As reported here on Earthquake-Report.com, new webcams were recently installed at the summit of Mount Merapi on the Indonesian island of Java.

The alert status of this volcano is currently at 'Normal', as the monitoring is not showing any signs of deformation on the flanks. However, as can be seen from the webcam, the volcano is emitting water vapour. Therefore, the communities around Merapi, particularly the city of Yogyakarta, remain ever alert.

Merapi last erupted in 2014.

via Sutopo Purwo Nugroho (@Sutopo_PN)

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February 22, 2018

Mount Michael volcano, Sound Sandwich Islands
Santiago Gassó @SanGasso : Nice long plume today, Mount Michael in the subantarctic South Sandwich Islands archipelago

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Sinabung, Sumatra, Indonesia (Philippa)
Here at Earthquake-Report.com we just cannot keep our eyes off the eruption that occurred at Sinabung volcano two days ago. Although this volcano has been having daily explosive dome building-collapse eruptions for over four years, this particular eruption was much bigger than usual, with the ash plume reaching an altitude of over 5 km and the ensuing pyroclastic density currents (PDCs = avalanches of hot volcanic gases, ash, and other debris) reaching run-out distances of over 4.7 km. A Volcano Observatory Notification to Aviation (VONA) was issued and the aviation alert level was raised to red.

Gif of this eruption at Sinabung detected from Space via HIMAWARI true colour satellite imagery.
via Dan Lindsey (@DanLindsey77)

via Endo Lewa (https://www.facebook.com/endrolewa/)


What is fascinating about the image above is the different colours within the eruption columns: the dirty brown-grey colour of the PDC (left side of shot) indicative of the older material; the lighter colour (middle plume) indicative of more steam-driven emissions; the blue-grey colour of the younger plume (centre of shot) indicating the fragmentation and emission of new magmatic material, as opposed to just 'throat clearing' of a vent. An increase in sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions from the volcano was detected via satellite monitoring during the 2 weeks prior to this particular eruption, indicative of a new batch of magma rising to the surface. If correct, then it is possible that this batch either mixed or mingled with some slightly older magma above it at a shallow depth, triggering this more explosive eruption.

Although all the activity on 19th February occurred within the 5 km-radius exclusion zone around Sinabung, from which inhabitants have long-since been evacuated from, as seen in the images posted yesterday, this particular eruption scared a lot of local people, and schools in neighbouring areas were evacuated as a precaution.

No casualties were reported. However, inhabitants in areas outside of but near to the exclusion zone will need to clear the ash from their roofs to avoid building collapses, and be vigilant about protecting their drinking water supplies. There may otherwise be long-term health implications as the volcanic ash is remobilised, including irritation to the eyes and a lung condition called silicosis.

How the volcanic ash fall looked at ground level - via Endro Lewa


Photographer Endro Lewa uses his foot to show the ash fall at ground level.

Endro Lewas feet Sinabung 190218

Mayon, Philippines (Philippa)
See the GIF (below) for images of the latest eruption at Mayon.

via PHIVOLCS-DOST (https://www.facebook.com/PHIVOLCS)

If there are any Pinoys reading this Earthquake-Report.com, please let us know what is being said in this tv news report. There have been several press conferences today, and we /think/ that PHIVOLCS are possibly considering lowering the alert level at Mayon, but Google Translate is not working too well for us to confirm this.

via News TV

BP: PhiVolcs, pinag-aaralan na ibaba ang alert level sa Bulkang Mayon

February 21, 2018

Grimsey, Iceland
An earthquake swarm below Grimsey volcanic island has attracted the attention of Geologist as well as the public. This extensive article in an Iceland magazine gives an overview of what happened today as in the past as well as the different scenarios still on the table.

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Mayon volcano, Philippines
Pierre Markuse (@Pierre_Markuse) Mount Mayon Volcano Lava flow yesterday. Full-size picture : flic.kr/p/Goc5ZU

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Sinabung volcano, Sumatra, Indonesia
Mark Parrington (@m_parrington) : Latest SO2 analysis from #Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service with plume from Sinabung volcano

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February 20

Sinabung volcano, Sumatra, Indonesia
Another strong eruption today. The volcano has been erupting constantly the last 3 years but only the major ones, like today, are still getting the media.
Pyroclastic flows (extremely hot clouds containing ash) rushed 4.7 km down the slopes of the volcano but as a big evacuation perimeter has been set (since the beginning of the eruption in 2015), nobody got hurt or killed.

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February 19

Soufriere Hills Volcano, Montserrat, Eastern Caribbean (Philippa)
The Strengthening Resilience in Volcanic Areas (STREVA) project has been creating a new series of videos on Soufriere Hills volcano and the Eastern Caribbean island of Montserrat to add to the ones on Nevada del Ruiz (Colombia) and La Soufriere volcano (St Vincent, Caribbean).

Below is a teaser video about the the mid-1990s eruptions of Soufriere Hills, which destroyed the former capital city of Plymouth and turned the southern half of Montserrat into an exclusion zone.

via STREVA (@StrevaProject)

Montserrat, also known as the Emerald Isle of the Caribbean, was once home to 12,000 people. It was made famous internationally in the 1980s thanks to (Beatles producer) George Martin's Air Studios, where the likes of The Rolling Stones and The Police recorded albums (Video of The Police - 'Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic' - featuring Air Studios Montserrat and footage from the island)

However, following the combination of first a hurricane and then the explosive dome collapse eruptions of Soufriere Hills volcano from the mid-1990s, which turned the southern half of Montserrat into a modern day Pompeii covered with pyroclastic density currents and lahars, many of the original inhabitants had to permanently relocate to overseas.

The image below shows a pyroclastic density current from the explosive eruption on Soufriere Hills Volcano on 25th June 1997, in which 19 people were killed.

via Paul Cole (@PaulCole23)

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The last eruptive phase of Soufriere Hills, which occurred in 2010, completely destroyed the old airport. Although a new airport and catamaran port have since been established in the northern half of the island, because of their lower capacity, the logistics of getting supplies and people on and off island is difficult. As a result, there are now just over 4,000 people living on Montserrat.

The volcano has been relatively quiet in the past 8 years. However, images taken by staff at Montserrat Volcano Observatory and helicopter pilot Greg Scott during reconnaissance flights show that Soufriere Hills Volcano is still active and likely to erupt again in the future.

via Greg Scott (www.facebook.com/bugdriver60)

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Popocatepetl, Mexico (Philippa)
Gif of a volcano 'burp' earlier today at Popocatepetl.

via Webcams de Mexico (@webcamsdemexico)

Mount Agung, Bali, Indonesia (Philippa)
As reported recently, the Alert Level at Mount Agung has been lowered from 4 to 3 following a reduction, but not complete cessation, of activity.

As of today there are currently around 3,000 local inhabitants still at 52 evacuation centres, a reduction from almost 16,000 people at 146 evacuation centres a week ago. Displaced people have gradually been allowed to return home following the reduction of the exclusion zones now to 4 km around the volcano.

via Sutopo Purwo Nugroho (@Sutopo_PN)

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Tourist visits to Bali are safe, but entry to the exclusion zones around Agung on the east of the island are strictly forbidden, as the volcano is still active and capable of explosive eruptions. See the video footage below from a plume-forming eruption which occurred at Agung as recently as 13th February.

via Sutopo Purwo Nugroho (@Sutopo_PN)

Etna, Sicily, Italy (Philippa)
Beautiful shot from earlier today of the 'puttusiddu' vent on Etna. This is the view from (volcanologist) Boris Behncke's kitchen window! He reports that this vent is currently having small ash emissions approximately once or twice an hour, and hot, incandescent (glowing) rock fragments are also visible during these small eruptions.

via Boris Behncke (@etnaboris)

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February 17, 2018

Volcano monitoring and Budget cuts in the USA

February 16

Kadovar volcano, Papua New Guinea
The Rabaul Volcano Observatory's acting assistant director Steve Saunders said a dome of lava had formed and reached about 200 meters out to sea.
Kadovar will be uninhabitable for a very long time.
The majority of the people won't be able to go back for a long time, no."
The video below shows the activity at the volcano shortly after it first erupted on January 7, 2018.

Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: 7 to 13 February 2018
Via Smithsonian Institution - Global Volcanism Program / US Geological Survey

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Fuego | Guatemala
INSIVUMEH reported that explosions at Fuego during 7-13 February generated ash plumes that rose as high as 1.5 km and drifted 10-12 km N, NW, SW, and S. Avalanches of material traveled down the Seca (W), Ceniza (SSW), and Taniluyá (SW) drainages on 12 February, and down the Las Lajas (SE) and Honda (E) drainages on 13 February. Ash fell in areas downwind on 13 February including Morelia (9 km SW) and Panimaché (8 km SW).

Kadovar | Papua New Guinea
RVO reported that on 9 February the lava dome at Kadovar’s SE Coastal Vent collapsed, causing 5-6 minor tsunamis, less than 1 m high, observed by residents on Blup Blup’s E and W coasts. The waves were reported at 1050, before the main collapse of the dome. In a 12 February report RVO noted that activity from Main Crater consisted of white plumes rising 20 m and drifting a few kilometers SE and weak nighttime crater incandescence.

Mayon | Luzon (Philippines)
PHIVOLCS reported that during 7-13 February activity at Mayon continued to be characterized daily by lava effusion from the summit crater, rockfalls, lava fountains, steam emissions, advancing lava flows on the flanks, and pyroclastic flows. Numerous rockfall events were generated from the front and margins of advancing lava flows. Lava fountaining was nearly continuous during 6-10 February, with around 290 lava-fountaining events recorded by the seismic network from 0557 on 5 February until around 0700 on 10 February. The events each lasted between 3 and 233 minutes, and were accompanied by rumbling sounds audible with a 10-km radius. Lava fountaining was sporadic during 11-13 February. Lava fountains during phases of both nearly continuous and sporadic activity rose as tall as 400 m, and produced steam plumes up to 2.5 km above the crater that drifted in multiple directions. Lava flows advanced to 3.3 km, 4.5 km, and 900 m in the Mi-isi (S), Bonga (SE), and Basud (E) drainages, respectively. Pyroclastic density currents traveled 4.2-4.6 km in the Mi-isi, Bonga, and Basud drainages. The Alert Level remained at 4 (on a 0-5 scale) and the public was warned to remain outside of the Danger Zone defined as an area within an 8-km radius.

February 15

Mayon volcano, Philippines
Beautiful Sentinel 2 satellite image from the lava streams on the Mayon volcano on February 9. Satellite images are giving us more and more details out of space.
This picture contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data [2018], processed by Pierre Markuse

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Ambae volcano, Vanuatu
The picture below (via Sentinel 2) shows the activity of the Ambae volcano on February 8

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Agung volcano, Bali, Indonesia
Video of the explosion at the volcano earlier today at 11:49 local Bali time.

February 13

Agung volcano, Bali, Indonesia
The status of Agung has been lowered from level 4 to 3. The exclusion zone has been reduced to 4 km. Evacuees can go home.
On the photo, press conference
via Dr. Janine Krippner (@janinekrippner)

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Mayon volcano, Philippines
Jaime Sincioco @jaimessincioco : Latest aerial photos of the restless #Mayon volcano taken during the aerial survey conducted by Phivolcs yesterday

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February 10

Chaiten volcano, Chile (Philippa)
In 2008 the Chaitén volcano erupted after laying dormant for over 9,000 years, sending ash, smoke, and lava flowing into the little town named for the roaring mountain. Juan Santana, a former police officer in the area, walks us through the town, recalling the night that the sky blackened and the landscape shifted, and sharing how the community is rebuilding and "working together for Chaitén."
Philippa: Interesting recollection of the sounds that were heard prior to and during the 2008 eruption.

Kirishima volcano, Japan

JMA latest alert

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General information
Kirishimayama is a large group of more than 20 Quaternary volcanoes located north of Kagoshima Bay. The late-Pleistocene to Holocene dominantly andesitic group consists of stratovolcanoes, pyroclastic cones, maars, and underlying shield volcanoes located over an area of 20 x 30 km. The larger stratovolcanoes are scattered throughout the field, with the centrally located, 1700-m-high Karakunidake being the highest. Onamiike and Miike, the two largest maars, are located SW of Karakunidake and at its far eastern end, respectively. Holocene eruptions have been concentrated along an E-W line of vents from Miike to Ohachi, and at Shinmoedake to the NE. Frequent small-to-moderate explosive eruptions have been recorded since the 8th century.

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February 9, 2018

Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: 31 January - 6 February 2018
Via Smithsonian Institution - Global Volcanism Program / US Geological Survey

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Fuego | Guatemala
INSIVUMEH reported that the first Strombolian eruption at Fuego in 2018 began on 31 January, after a thermal anomaly was detected in satellite images the day before. Explosions produced ash plumes that rose 1.5 km above the crater and drifted 20 km SW. Lava fountains rose 300-500 m, and fed lava flows that traveled 800 m W in the Seca (Santa Teresa) drainage and 600 m in Las Lajas (SE) and Honda (E) drainages. On 1 February the eruption style changed to Vulcanian. Pyroclastic flows mainly descended the Seca, Trinidad (S), Las Lajas, and Honda drainages. Ash plumes from explosions rose 3.2 km and drifted more than 60 km NE, SW, and W. Ashfall was recorded in areas downwind including Santa Sofía (12 km SW), Morelia (9 km SW), Panimaché I and II (8 km SW), El Porvenir (8 km ENE), Sangre de Cristo (8 km WSW), Finca Palo Verde, San Pedro Yepocapa (8 km NW), Ciudad Vieja (13.5 km NE), Antigua Guatemala (18 km NE), and W and SW Ciudad de Guatemala. CONRED reported that 2,880 people were evacuated. At 1630 INSIVUMEH noted that the Strombolian-Vulcanian eruption phase had finished, 20 hours after it had begun. Explosions continued, generating ash plumes that rose just under 1 km and drifted 15 km SW.
On 2 February there were 3-5 weak explosion recorded per hour, with ash plumes rising 750 m and drifting 5-8 km W, SW, and S. Shock waves and rumbling were noted, and the lava flows remained visible. During 4-5 February ash plumes from explosions (about 5 per hour) produced ash plumes that rose 700 m and drifted W and SW. Incandescent material was ejected 200 m above the crater, causing weak avalanches of material around the crater area and in some vegetated areas.

Kadovar | Papua New Guinea
RVO reported that the eruption at Kadovar continued during 31 January-1 February at a low level. Sulfur dioxide emissions and seismicity had both decreased. Dense white vapor plumes rose 100 m from Main Crater and drifted SE. Continuous but dull glow emanated from the crater. The lava dome at the SE Coastal Vent continued to grow. A new lobe 20-30 m long grew out from the seaward side of the dome boundary, channeled by levees which had developed on the sides of the dome. White steam plumes rose 100 m above the island and drifted SE. At 1830 on 1 February a collapse of the N part of the dome produced a gray plume, vigorous steaming at the collapse site, and nighttime incandescence. The main part of the dome had bulged up, and a valley developed in between the dome and the island’s flank.

Karangetang | Siau Island (Indonesia)
In a VONA issued on 2 February, PVMBG reported an eruption at Karangetang, characterized by crater incandescence and an ash plume that rose 600 m. The Aviation Color Code was raised from Unassigned to Yellow.

Mayon | Luzon (Philippines)
PHIVOLCS reported that during 31 January-6 February daily activity at Mayon continued to be characterized by lava effusion from the summit crater, rockfalls, pyroclastic flows (31 January-1 February), ash and steam emissions, advancing lava flows on the flanks, and weak and sporadic lava fountains. Numerous rockfall events were generated by the growing and collapsing summit lava dome and from the front and margins of advancing lava flows. On 31 January pyroclastic flows traveled as far as 2 km in the Mi-isi (S), Basud (E), and Bonga (SE) drainages. White-to-light-gray ash plumes generally rose to low heights, though five events generated ash plumes that rose as high as 1 km above the crater rim. An event on 2 February also produced an ash plume that rose 1 km. The first of two lava fountaining events on 4 February lasted sporadically for 114 minutes, generated an ash plume that rose 500 m, and produced booming sounds heard within a 10-km radius. During 5-6 February high volumes of effused lava extended the lava flows in the Mi-isi, Bonga-Buyuan, and Basud drainages to 3.2, 4.5, and 3 km, respectively. The Alert Level remained at 4 (on a 0-5 scale) and the public was warned to remain outside of the Danger Zone defined as an area within an 8-km radius.

San Miguel | El Salvador
On 2 February SNET reported that seismicity at San Miguel was decreasing, along with a decrease in emissions. RSAM values fluctuating between 63 and 114 units; normal values are between 50 and 150. Small pulses of gas near the crater rim were visible.

February 7, 2018

#VolcanoCup on Twitter (Philippa)
For those of you on Twitter, you may wish to follow the #VolcanoCup hash-tag this month in an online competition being run by former Earthquake-Report scribe Dr Janine Krippner (@janinekrippner).

The USA preliminary rounds just started yesterday, in which Crater Lake (the day's winner!), Bogoslof, Mount Hood, and Redoubt battled it out.

Today's round features Mt. Rainier, Long Valley Caldera, Mt. Baker, and Glacier Peak.

Below is the overview of the other forthcoming USA prelim rounds:

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....and the overview of the forthcoming worldwide rounds of #VolcanoCup are as follows:

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Voting is open to anyone and everyone, but the rules are that you have to give at least one reason for your choice. This means a little homework for all of us, but will be a great way to get to know more about these volcanoes, their specific hazards, and the risks that they pose to people, whether the threats are to communities living directly on the flanks or, for example, to aviation routes.

Forthcoming - interactive webinars with volcanologists (Philippa)
If any of you are middle school teachers or pupils, make a note in your diaries: 3 volcanologists from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and Volcano Disaster Assistance Program (VDAP) will be doing live interactive webinars in March:

  • 6 March with Angie Diefenbach
  • 13 March with Heather Wright
  • 20 March with Richard Iverson

I have had the pleasure of going on fieldwork in Chile with Angie and Heather and learned so much from both of them, in particular about laser scanning of volcanoes for creating digital elevation models and hazard maps (Angie), and what pumices rocks (frothy lava) found at the surface can tell us about the dynamics inside a volcano during its previous eruption(s) (Heather). So this is a great opportunity for you to ask them questions too.

Full details are given in the image below:

via USGS Volcanoes (@USGSVolcanoes)

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Yasur, Tanna Island, Vanuatu (Philippa)
A great little video of an ash-rich eruption with ballistics (flying rocks) at Yasur volcano.

via Benjamin Simons (@dread_rocks)

Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: 24 January - 30 January 2018
Via Smithsonian Institution - Global Volcanism Program / US Geological Survey

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Kadovar | Papua New Guinea
Rabaul Volcano Observatory (RVO) reported that the eruption at Kadovar continued during 23-24 January at levels similar to the previous few days. Main Crater produced light-grey to brown ash plumes that rose at most 100 m and drifted a few tens of km W. Weak incandescence (glow) from Main Crater was visible at night. The lava dome at the SE Coastal Vent continued to grow and was an estimated 50 m above sea level (a.s.l.)(the water depth in that area was unknown) and extends out from the coast 150-200 m. The dome glowed red at night. Seismicity was low to moderate, with one high-frequency event, and 12 significant numerous small low-frequency events. Strong sulphur dioxide emissions were detected.

Kusatsu-Shiranesan | Honshu (Japan)
The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) reported that after the 23rd January eruption near Motoshiranesan (the highest peak belonging to the Kusatsu-Shiranesan complex) seismicity, characterized by volcanic earthquakes and tremor, was elevated; it decreased the next day. Minor but elevated seismicity continued through 30 January, punctuated by periods of tremo. The eruption occurred from a fissure orientated E-W, located just inside the N rim of the northernmost Kagamiike Kitahi craters. JMA noted no juvenile (new) material in the eruption deposits. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a 5-level scale).

Mayon | Luzon (Philippines)
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) reported that during 23-29 Januar there were 2-7 daily episodes of intense and sporadic lava fountaining at Mayon, each lasting 7-74 minutes. The lava fountains rose as high as 600 m above the crater rim, and fed flows in the Mi-isi and Bonga drainages and incandescent rockfalls on the summit area. Ash plumes rose 3-5 km above the crater. As many as three pyroclastic flows each day were detected by the seismic network, and had runout distances exceeding 5 km in the Buyuan drainage. Numerous rockfall events were generated by the growing and collapsing summit lava dome and traveled into the Bonga drainage, and from the front and margins of the advancing 3-km-long lava flow on the Mi-isi drainage. The Buyuan lava flow was 1 km long. Sulphur dioxide gas emissions were between 1,252 and 2,466 tonnes/day during 23-25 January. Heavy rain triggered lahars in the Binaan drainage during 28-29 January.

A cycle of energetic lava effusion with sporadic lava fountaining, and pyroclastic flows from lava-collapse events, occurred late on 29 January. The events were mostly visually obscured, and indicated by seismic data. The period began with a large-volume lava collapse at 19:50 at the summit crater that generated pyroclastic flows in the Mi-isi and Bonga drainages. Lava fountaining was detected at 20:16 and lasted eight minutes. This was followed by large-volume lava effusion that lasted 96 minutes, and was interspersed with sporadic lava fountaining and/or pyroclastic flows. Sporadic lava fountaining was visually and seismically detected until 23:06, with lava fountains rising as high as 200 m. Ash plumes rose 1.5 km above the crater. Significant ashfall was reported in Camalig and Guinobatan, Albay before 21:00, possibly resulting from the lava fountaining and pyroclastic flows.

San Miguel | El Salvador
Servicio Nacional de Estudios Territoriales (SNET) reported that during 25-26 January seismic activity at San Miguel was slightly higher than normal, with RSAM (seismic counts) values fluctuating between 75 and 179 units. Small pulses of gas near the crater rim were visible.

Zaozan | Honshu (Japan)
JMA reported that tremor was detected at Zaozan on 28 and 30 January, and minor inflation at the S part of the volcano was recorded. There were 12 volcanic earthquakes detected on 31 January. JMA raised the Alert Level to 2 (on a 5-level scale), noting the increased potential for a small eruption.

February 2, 2018