Lava fountaining at Pavlof volcano, Alaska

Lava fountaining at Pavlof volcano, Alaska

According to AVO (Alaska Volcano Observatory) Pavlof volcano continues to erupt. Lava fountaining at the summit has been observed and photographed, and a continuous ash, steam, and gas cloud generated by the activity extends downwind from the volcano for 50 to 100 km at an altitude of about 6 km (20,000 ft) above sea level.

This natural-color satellite image, collected by the Advanced Land Imager (ALI) on the Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) satellite, shows Pavlof on May 16, 2013. A brown ash plume blew from the summit towards the southeast, and gray ash from earlier explosions covered the snow on the volcano’s upper slopes. To the northeast, additional ash rose from an ongoing lava flow. (NASA Earth Observatory image by Jesse Allen and Robert Simmon, using EO-1 ALI data from the NASA EO-1 team. Caption by Robert Simmon, with input from Erik Klemetti (Denison University) and Dave Mayer (Clark University))

On the morning of Thursday, May 16, 2013 the cloud was carried to the southeast, AVO reports. Satellite images show persistent elevated surface temperatures at the summit and on the northwest flank, commensurate with the summit lava fountaining and resulting lava flow.

AVO raised Volcano Alert Level from Advisory to Watch and Aviation Color Code from Yellow to OrangeSeismic activity remains elevated with nearly continuous tremor recorded on the seismic network, the agency reported.

MODIS hot spot data (past 7 days) for Pavlof volcano (ModVolc, Univ. Hawaii).

Current seismic recording from Pavlof volcano (PVV station, AVO).

Pavlof volcano

The most active volcano of the Aleutian arc, Pavlof is a 2519-m-high Holocene stratovolcano that was constructed along a line of vents extending NE from the Emmons Lake caldera. Pavlof and its twin volcano to the NE, 2142-m-high Pavlof Sister, form a dramatic pair of symmetrical, glacier-covered stratovolcanoes that tower above Pavlof and Volcano bays. A third cone, Little Pavlof, is a smaller volcano on the SW flank of Pavlof volcano, near the rim of Emmons Lake caldera.

Pavlof volcano and eruption plume on evening of August 30, 2007. View is to the S, out of the right side of a PenAir Metro Airline plane en route to Anchorage from Cold Bay; plume height was approximately 5.2-5.5 km. (Courtesy of Chris Waythomas and AVO/USGS)

Unlike Pavlof Sister, Pavlof has been frequently active in historical time, typically producing strombolian to vulcanian explosive eruptions from the summit vents and occasional lava flows. The active vents lie near the summit on the north and east sides. The largest historical eruption of Pavlof took place in 1911, at the end of a 5-year-long eruptive episode. During this eruption a fissure opened on the northern flank of the volcano, ejecting large blocks and issuing lava flows. (Global Volcanism Program)

Index map showing location of Pavlof volcano and other Alaska Peninsula volcanoes. (Credit: Snedigar, Schaefer/Image courtesy of the AVO/ADGGS)


Featured image: Pavlof in eruption, May 16, 2013. Photograph courtesy of pilot Theo Chesley.


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Tags: alaska, pavlof


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