Tag Archives: VOLCANO


An ash cloud erupted some 15,000 feet into the air from Alaska’s Cleveland Volcano, according to satellite images and the Alaska Volcano Observatory. The volcano, located in the Aleutian Islands about 45 miles west of the community of Nikolski, has been upgraded and downgraded several times over the last few months, flaring up in July and erupting in the form of a growing lava dome in August. Following several weeks of activity, the volcano was downgraded before being upgraded again to an alert level of “watch” and an aviation hazard color-code of “orange” in early September. Two months later, the alert level was again lowered after the volcano seemed to quiet down. This latest activity comes six days after the most recent update on the AVO website. The AVO said that satellite imagery from about 5 a.m. Thursday confirmed the presence of a detached ash cloud, about 50 miles away from the volcano and moving southeast. The last significant eruption of Cleveland occurred in February 2001 and resulted in three ash plumes that reached up to 39,000 feet above sea level and “a rubbly lava flow and hot avalanche that reached the sea.” Aviators in the area are encouraged to exercise caution, but the AVO said that the eruption may be an isolated event. “Satellite data indicate that this is a single explosion event,” the AVO said, “however, more sudden explosions producing ash could occur with plumes exceeding 20,000 feet above sea level. Such explosions and their associated ash clouds may go undetected in satellite imagery for hours.” Cleveland volcano lacks any real-time monitoring equipment.


Officials say fast-moving mudflows streaming from the mouth of a volcano in eastern Indonesia have killed four villagers. About 1,000 others have fled their homes. Mount Gamalama, located in the Molucca Islands, sprang back to life this month with a powerful, non-fatal eruption. Government spokesman Yusuf Sunnya said Wednesday that days of heavy rains triggered flows of cold lava, rocks and other debris that slammed into villages near the base Tuesday night. He said four people were killed and more than a dozen others were hospitalized with injuries ranging from broken bones to head wounds. Indonesia is a vast archipelago with millions of people living on mountains or near fertile flood plains. Seasonal downpours here often cause landslides.


At least 80 children from this city were rescued after being trapped in the floods that inundated parts of the town of Kapalong in Davao del Norte where they were attending a youth camp on Tuesday, Kapalong Mayor Edgardo Timbol said. Timbol said the children were participating in a youth camp in Barangay Florida when the floods struck at 2 a.m. “The children are now safe. They were to be sent home to Tagum City,” Timbol told the Inquirer by phone. Kapalong was among several Davao del Norte towns inundated by floods of up to four feet in some areas that were triggered by a low-pressure area.

In Barangay Florida alone, four houses were destroyed as the Saug, Ilog and Libuganon rivers overflowed, Timbol said. About 300 families were evacuated and are now temporarily staying at the Kapalong municipal gym, he said. Eric Rosillo of the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Committee said a total of 1,762 families had been evacuated provincewide due to the floods. Rosillo said no flood casualty has been reported so far although some road networks were inaccessible for several hours due to the floods. In Bukidnon, some 400 families were also assisted in their evacuation by Valencia City authorities after the Pulangui River swelled and submerged several villages on Tuesday, said Arsenio Alagenio of the Bukidnon disaster mitigation council. Alagenio said some residents living along the swollen river were initially trapped when the water level suddenly rose but they were rescued by elements of the Philippine Air Force. In Cotabato City, hundreds of residents of Punol Island, a sandbar, had also been evacuated following the swelling of the Pulangui River.

The Pulangui River is part of the system that feeds water to the Rio Grande de Mindanao, which empties into the sea in Cotabato City. Cotabato City Mayor Japal Guiani Jr. said aside from Punol residents, families living in the low-lying villages of Poblacion 1, 2, 3, 4, and 7 were also evacuated. The evacuees were temporarily housed at the Cotabato City Central Elementary School and at the Mega Market area. “This is disaster preparedness in case the floodwaters come at night. We don’t want the experience of our neighbors in Cagayan (de Oro) and Iligan repeated because they were caught flat-footed,” said Sam Mundas, the city’s action officer. In Magpet, North Cotabato, Mayor Efren Piñol also ordered local officials to activate their disaster response teams in anticipation of landslides due to the abnormal weather pattern. Piñol said the villages of Manobisa, Imamaling, Ilian, Magcaalam, Bongolanon, Bantac, Pangao-an, Sallab and Doles had been identified landslide-prone areas. He said residents living near creeks had also been warned of possible floods because of the torrential rains.


DECEMBER 3rd 2011

Etna erupted briefly this morning. A new, short-lived explosion and a small cloud of ash issuing from the new mouth of the volcano was recorded at 09.07 (CET). Only the tip of the volcano was involved and the eruption has subsided, without any repercussions on flights at Catania airport. Etna has had similar, sometimes powerful, episodes in recent months.

Volcano Activity in Bolivia on Tuesday, 29 November, 2011

Given that there has been some recent interest in Uturuncu in the media, when this paper from the Bulletin of Volcanology came up among my RSS feeds it instantly piqued my interest. Titled “Shallow seismicity, triggered seismicity, and ambient noise tomography at the long-dormant Uturuncu Volcano, Bolivia”, it reports the findings from a seismic survey of the volcano between April 2009 and April 2010. Uturuncu is in a remote part of the Bolivian Andes, and hasn’t erupted for the last 4,000 years. However, InSAR (satellite) measurements have shown it to be inflating by 1-1.5 cm/year, which is quite fast. Modelling this deformation shows it is most likely in response to some increase in volume 15-17 km bellow sea level (21-23 km below the summit). There is a zone of material at this depth where the velocity of seismic waves is found to be low compared to solid rock, and this implies it is partially molten (at least 14-27% melt, likely in some sort of crystal mush). This suggests that the inflation is due to the injection of fresh magma.

This recent study placed a temporary network of seismometers around Uturuncu in order to map out the locations of any earthquakes that might be there. They then did three things with it: attempted to determine the cause of the seismicity; used the low-level seismic noise to calculate some the structures found beneath the volcano; and looked at the effect of the 27 February magnitude 8.8 Maule earthquake. With respect to the Maule earthquake, the team recorded the seismic waves as they arrived. They found that these waves triggered a swarm of small earthquakes. This has been observed before, and doesn’t tell us much about the volcano itself, so I shall leave the discussion at that and move on to the cause of the earthquakes. They recorded on average three earthquakes a day, although several times a month there would be a swarm of 5-60 within a few hours. The largest was a magnitude 3.7. The earthquakes clustered around the summit, at depths of around sea-level (The summit of Uturuncu is 6,008 m above sea level).

Volcano Eruption in Ecuador on Monday, 28 November, 2011

The Tungurahua volcano in Ecuador is spewing out red-hot rocks and billowing coarse ash. The South American country’s Geophysical Institute says the increased activity began Sunday afternoon. It says the volcano has thrown pyroclastic boulders up to a mile from the crater, and there have been at least four earthquakes in the area. The 16,480-foot (5,023-meter) volcano is in a sparsely populated area about 84 miles (135 kilometers) southeast of Ecuador’s capital, Quito. It has been active since 1999.

Volcano Activity in Colombia on Friday, 25 November, 2011

The Galeras volcano in Colombia’s western department of Nariño could erupt within weeks or days. The level of volcanic activity was increased to orange alert Thursday 9PM by the Colombian Geological Service and the Volcanology and Seismology Observatory of Pasto, which are monitoring the activity of Galeras. The institutions stated that in the last 24 hours, tremors have been registered that have similar characteristics to those in the period prior to the majority of eruptions, which occurred between 1992 and 2010. There has been a reduction in the emission of gases, reflected in the low values of sulphur dioxide measured, both coming from craters and fields of volcanic fissures. Some 8,000 people live in the area surrounding the volcano that reawakened in 1988. The Colombian Geological Service will continue to monitor the situation of the Galeras volcano.

Volcano Eruption in Guatemala

The Guatemalan geophysical survey SERNAGEOMIN reports increasing explosive activity from Fuego volcano, one of the country’s most active volcanoes. Fuego was observed producing ash clouds reaching 1500-2000 m above the summit crater (at ca. 3600 m altitude) which drifted SW and reached up to 20 km distance where they produced some ash fall, reported in the communities of Panimaché, Morelia, Sangre de Cristo, and Santa Sofía. The explosions were accompanied by moderate to strong booming noises and shock waves that could be felt in up to 15 km distance. Near-constant rock avalanches are observed on the upper slopes beneath the summit crater, some of which reach the vegetated areas.

Uturuncu volcano : Magma is rising in the Bolivian volcano with astonishing speed!!!!

Uturuncu volcano – Magma is rising in the Bolivian volcano that last erupted 300,000 years ago, a U.S. research team monitoring the mountain says. Researchers say the magma is uplifting rapidly. “Uturuncu – a volcano in the Bolivian Andes Mountains – was thought to be inactive. The region is populated by ‘supervolcanoes’ that erupted between 1 (million) and 10 million years ago. Now the Uturuncu magma is accumulating in the crust and we’re observing whether it is moving upward toward the surface. Right now, we have no reason to think that an eruption is imminent. The area at Uturuncu has had hundreds of shallow earthquakes per year, but the rate of earthquakes increased briefly due to last year’s tremors in Chile. These characteristics are UNUSUAL for a volcano that has not erupted in 300,000 years.”

LIVE BLOG : Hudson volcano eruption (Chile)



OCTOBER 30, 2011

Seismologist in Iceland have observed a series of minor earthquakes under one of the country’s most recently volatile volcanoes. The minor quakes – the worst measuring around 3.2 in magnitude – have increased in speed in the last six hours, and are all located almost directly under Katla. That volcano is located relatively close to Eyjafjallajokull – the volcano whose ash cloud grounded flights across Europe in spring 2010 – but Katla is larger and considered more volatile. The two volcanoes are closely related – each of Katla’s main eruptions in the last millennium has been triggered by an earlier eruption of its smaller cousin. On occasions when Katla does erupt, its full eruptions are up to 50 per cent more significant than those of Eyjafjallajokull. Both volcanoes are encased in glacial ice. A harmonic tremor at the volcano in June of this year led to similar swarm of earthquakes near Katla’s main chamber, which had already put seismologists on high alert of a potential full-blown eruption. It is yet unclear whether the new swarm of quakes will lead to a similar tremor – but the events will be watched nervously by airlines and travellers alike, who will be anxious to avoid a repeat of last year’s airborne chaos. Eyjafjallajokull’s eruptions last year left air travel shut across Europe for eight days in April, with further irregular downtime in May. The International Air Transport Association said the disruptions cost the air travel industry €1.3 billion.