New episode of lava fountaining and powerful explosions at Etna's SE crater

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After an interval of relative quiescence of 16 days, Etna's New Southeast Crater (NSEC) has produced a new episode of lava fountaining (paroxysm) on the morning of November 11, 2013.

The culminating phase, with lava fountains, ash emission and lava flows, started about 04:00 UTC, after about 10 hours of gradually intensifying strombolian activity.

Rather inclement weather conditions precluded any visual observation of the activity, which was accompanied by a strong increase in the volcanic tremor amplitude, and the superficialization and shifting of the volcanic tremor source from a position below the Northeast Crater toward the NSEC.

Volcanic tremor (ESLN) station. Image credit: INGV Sezione di Catania

The phase of maximum intensity of the activity lasted about 7.5 hours, ending around 10:30 UTC; the cessation of lava fountaining was followed by a long series of powerful explosions that generated loud bangs heard mostly in the northern sector of the volcano. 

Ash and lapilli falls were reported east and northeast of the volcano. A voluminous lava flow expanded from the NSEC toward south, and two smaller lava flows were emitted toward east-southeast and northeast.

Source: INGV Sezione di Catania

Featured image: INGV webcam (Montagnola thermal image). November 11, 2013 @ 18:25 UTC

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