The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: January 5 – 11, 2022

the-weekly-volcanic-activity-report-january-5-11-2022

New activity/unrest was reported for 5 volcanoes from January 5 to 11, 2022. During the same period, ongoing activity was reported for 14 volcanoes.

New activity/unrest: Karangetang, Siau Island (Indonesia) | Krysuvik-Trolladyngja, Iceland | Piton de la Fournaise, Reunion Island (France) | Semeru, Eastern Java (Indonesia) | Wolf, Isla Isabela (Ecuador).

Ongoing activity: Aira, Kyushu (Japan) | Great Sitkin, Andreanof Islands (USA) | Grimsvotn, Iceland | Karymsky, Eastern Kamchatka (Russia) | Kilauea, Hawaiian Islands (USA) | Lewotolok, Lembata Island (Indonesia) | Merapi, Central Java (Indonesia) | Pavlof, United States | Rincon de la Vieja, Costa Rica | Sangay, Ecuador | Semisopochnoi, Aleutian Islands (USA) | Sheveluch, Central Kamchatka (Russia) | Suwanosejima, Ryukyu Islands (Japan) | Yasur, Vanuatu.

The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report is a cooperative project between the Smithsonian's Global Volcanism Program and the US Geological Survey's Volcano Hazards Program. Updated by 23:00 UTC every Wednesday, these reports are preliminary and subject to change as events are studied in more detail. This is not a comprehensive list of all of Earth's volcanoes erupting during the week, but rather a summary of activity at volcanoes that meet criteria discussed in detail in the "Criteria and Disclaimers" section. Carefully reviewed, detailed reports about recent activity are published in issues of the Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network.

New activity/unrest

Karangetang, Siau Island (Indonesia)

2.781°N, 125.407°E, Summit elev. 1797 m

PVMBG reported that incandescence from Karangetang’s N crater was periodically visible during 5-10 January. Daily white emissions rose generally 150 m above the summit, but sometimes as high as 200 m. During 9-10 January white-and-gray plumes rose as high as 200 m. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale of 1-4).

Geological summary: Karangetang (Api Siau) volcano lies at the northern end of the island of Siau, about 125 km NNE of the NE-most point of Sulawesi island. The stratovolcano contains five summit craters along a N-S line. It is one of Indonesia's most active volcanoes, with more than 40 eruptions recorded since 1675 and many additional small eruptions that were not documented in the historical record (Catalog of Active Volcanoes of the World: Neumann van Padang, 1951). Twentieth-century eruptions have included frequent explosive activity sometimes accompanied by pyroclastic flows and lahars. Lava dome growth has occurred in the summit craters; collapse of lava flow fronts have produced pyroclastic flows.

Krysuvik-Trolladyngja, Iceland

63.917°N, 22.067°W, Summit elev. 360 m

Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO) reported that the earthquake swarm at the Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcanic system that began on 21 December 2021 had ceased. Additionally, InSAR and GPS data last recorded deformation on 28 December. IMO lowered the Aviation Color Code to Yellow on 7 January.

Geological summary: The Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcanic system is described by the Catalogue of Icelandic Volcanoes as an approximately 50-km-long composite fissure swarm trending about N38°E, including a 30-km-long swarm of fissures, with no central volcano. It is one of the volcanic systems arranged en-echelon along the Reykjanes Peninsula west of Kleifarvatn lake. The Fagradalsfjall and Krýsuvík fissure swarms are considered splits or secondary swarms of the Krýsuvík–Trölladyngja volcanic system. Small shield volcanoes have produced a large portion of the erupted volume within the system. Several eruptions have taken place since the settlement of Iceland, including the eruption of a large basaltic lava flow from the Ogmundargigar crater row around the 12th century. The latest eruption, identified through tephrochronology, took place during the 14th century.

Piton de la Fournaise, Reunion Island (France)

21.244°S, 55.708°E, Summit elev. 2632 m

OVPF reported that the eruption at Piton de la Fournaise continued during 5-11 January 2022. Weather clouds often obscured views of the vent, though visual observations were made daily. Lava fountains sometimes rose above the crater rim. The level of the lava lake periodically rose and overflowed the cone, sending lava flows down the flanks during 6 and 8-9 January. The lava effusion rate was an estimated 2-20 meters per second based on satellite data. Several breakouts of lava from the tube were noted. On 9 January a new lava flow slowly advanced along the S margin of the flow field, reaching 1,800 m elevation. On 10 January hikers observed smoke from an area in the S part of the caldera, likely from vegetation that had been set on fire from lava flows. The flow field continued to widen but had not significantly lengthened.

Geological summary: The massive Piton de la Fournaise basaltic shield volcano on the French island of Réunion in the western Indian Ocean is one of the world's most active volcanoes. Much of its more than 530,000-year history overlapped with eruptions of the deeply dissected Piton des Neiges shield volcano to the NW. Three calderas formed at about 250,000, 65,000, and less than 5000 years ago by progressive eastward slumping of the volcano. Numerous pyroclastic cones dot the floor of the calderas and their outer flanks. Most historical eruptions have originated from the summit and flanks of Dolomieu, a 400-m-high lava shield that has grown within the youngest caldera, which is 8 km wide and breached to below sea level on the eastern side. More than 150 eruptions, most of which have produced fluid basaltic lava flows, have occurred since the 17th century. Only six eruptions, in 1708, 1774, 1776, 1800, 1977, and 1986, have originated from fissures on the outer flanks of the caldera. The Piton de la Fournaise Volcano Observatory, one of several operated by the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris, monitors this very active volcano.

Semeru, Eastern Java (Indonesia)

8.108°S, 112.922°E, Summit elev. 3657 m

PVMBG reported that the eruption at Semeru continued during 5-11 January. Crater incandescence was visible each night. Gray-and-white plumes rose 300-600 m during 4-8 and 10 January. Pyroclastic flows descended the Kobokan (SE) and Lengkong drainages during 5-6 January and avalanches traveled 700 m down the Kobokan drainage during 6-7 January. At 2311 on 7 January a pyroclastic flow traveled 3 km down the Kobokan drainage, and another traveled 1 km down the same drainage during 8-9 January. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-4). Due to lahar, avalanche, and pyroclastic flow hazards, the public was warned to stay at least 500 m away from the Kobokan drainage within 17 km of the summit, and other drainages originating on Semeru including the Bang, Kembar, and Sat.

Geological summary: Semeru, the highest volcano on Java, and one of its most active, lies at the southern end of a volcanic massif extending north to the Tengger caldera. The steep-sided volcano, also referred to as Mahameru (Great Mountain), rises above coastal plains to the south. Gunung Semeru was constructed south of the overlapping Ajek-ajek and Jambangan calderas. A line of lake-filled maars was constructed along a N-S trend cutting through the summit, and cinder cones and lava domes occupy the eastern and NE flanks. Summit topography is complicated by the shifting of craters from NW to SE. Frequent 19th and 20th century eruptions were dominated by small-to-moderate explosions from the summit crater, with occasional lava flows and larger explosive eruptions accompanied by pyroclastic flows that have reached the lower flanks of the volcano.

Wolf, Isla Isabela (Ecuador)

0.02°N, 91.35°W, Summit elev. 1710 m

IG reported that a seismic swarm at Wolf began at 2100 on 6 January, followed by a M 2.4 earthquake recorded at 2135, and tremor at 2315. Fissures opened in an area SE of the summit caldera within five minutes of the onset of tremor and a new eruption began. At 0020 on 7 January satellite images showed ash-and-gas plumes rising to varying altitudes between 1.9 km (6,200 ft) and 3.8 km (12,500 ft) a.s.l., with the lower parts of the plume drifting NE and the higher parts drifting W. Thermal anomalies indicated advancing lava flows down the S and SE flanks. The Parque Nacional Galápagos and the Galapagos Conservancy evacuated eight people by helicopter, including park rangers and scientists that were working near the rim, as a precaution and noted that habitat for a population of critically endangered Pink Land Iguana was far from the eruption. Photos showed a line of lava fountains rising along the fissure and lava flows advancing over vegetation. Thermal anomalies continued to indicate advancing lava during 8-11 January. Plumes mostly consisting of gas rose as high as 1.3 km (4,300 ft) a.s.l. and drifted W and SW. The lava flows were not far from the ocean by 10 January. Photos posted on 11 January by Parque Nacional Galápagos showed lava fountaining at a growing cone and fluid lava flows advancing from the base of the cone. The lava flows had traveled 15 km SE, then E, by 11 January.

Geological summary: Wolf, the highest volcano of the Galápagos Islands, straddles the equator at the north end of the archipelago's largest island, Isabela. The 1710-m-high edifice has steeper slopes than most other Isabela volcanoes, reaching angles up to 35 degrees. A 6 x 7 km caldera, at 700 m one of the deepest of the Galápagos Islands, is located at the summit. A prominent bench on the west side of the caldera rises 450 above the caldera floor, much of which is covered by a lava flow erupted in 1982. Radial fissures concentrated along diffuse rift zones extend down the north, NW, and SE flanks, and submarine vents lie beyond the north and NW fissures. Similar unvegetated flows originating from a circumferential chain of spatter and scoria cones on the eastern caldera rim drape the forested flanks to the sea. The proportion of aa lava flows at Volcán Wolf exceeds that of other Galápagos volcanoes. An eruption in in 1797 was the first documented historical eruption in the Galápagos Islands.

Ongoing activity

Aira, Kyushu (Japan)

31.593°N, 130.657°E, Summit elev. 1117 m

JMA reported that incandescence from Minamidake Crater (at Aira Caldera’s Sakurajima volcano) was visible at night during 3-10 January. An eruptive event at 0143 on 7 January produced an ash plume that rose 1.3 km and ejected bombs 600-900 m away from the crater. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a 5-level scale), and residents were warned to stay 2 km away from the crater.

Geological summary: The Aira caldera in the northern half of Kagoshima Bay contains the post-caldera Sakurajima volcano, one of Japan's most active. Eruption of the voluminous Ito pyroclastic flow accompanied formation of the 17 x 23 km caldera about 22,000 years ago. The smaller Wakamiko caldera was formed during the early Holocene in the NE corner of the Aira caldera, along with several post-caldera cones. The construction of Sakurajima began about 13,000 years ago on the southern rim of Aira caldera and built an island that was finally joined to the Osumi Peninsula during the major explosive and effusive eruption of 1914. Activity at the Kitadake summit cone ended about 4850 years ago, after which eruptions took place at Minamidake. Frequent historical eruptions, recorded since the 8th century, have deposited ash on Kagoshima, one of Kyushu's largest cities, located across Kagoshima Bay only 8 km from the summit. The largest historical eruption took place during 1471-76.

Great Sitkin, Andreanof Islands (USA)

52.076°N, 176.13°W, Summit elev. 1740 m

AVO reported that slow lava effusion at Great Sitkin probably continued during 5-11 January, though cloudy conditions prevented satellite and webcam confirmation. Seismicity was very low; several small seismic events were recorded during 9-10 January. The Aviation Color Code and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Orange and Watch, respectively.

Geological summary: The Great Sitkin volcano forms much of the northern side of Great Sitkin Island. A younger parasitic volcano capped by a small, 0.8 x 1.2 km ice-filled summit caldera was constructed within a large late-Pleistocene or early Holocene scarp formed by massive edifice failure that truncated an ancestral volcano and produced a submarine debris avalanche. Deposits from this and an older debris avalanche from a source to the south cover a broad area of the ocean floor north of the volcano. The summit lies along the eastern rim of the younger collapse scarp. Deposits from an earlier caldera-forming eruption of unknown age cover the flanks of the island to a depth up to 6 m. The small younger caldera was partially filled by lava domes emplaced in 1945 and 1974, and five small older flank lava domes, two of which lie on the coastline, were constructed along northwest- and NNW-trending lines. Hot springs, mud pots, and fumaroles occur near the head of Big Fox Creek, south of the volcano. Historical eruptions have been recorded since the late-19th century.

Grimsvotn, Iceland

64.416°N, 17.316°W, Summit elev. 1719 m

The Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO) lowered the Aviation Color Code for Grímsvötn to Green on 12 January, noting that seismicity had returned to normal levels with a few earthquakes detected over the previous few weeks. The caldera had deepened during the jökulhlaup (glacial outburst flood) that had occurred during November and December 2021, though IMO noted that it was difficult to characterize the current status of the caldera and the level of the geothermal activity.

Geological summary: Grímsvötn, Iceland's most frequently active volcano in historical time, lies largely beneath the vast Vatnajökull icecap. The caldera lake is covered by a 200-m-thick ice shelf, and only the southern rim of the 6 x 8 km caldera is exposed. The geothermal area in the caldera causes frequent jökulhlaups (glacier outburst floods) when melting raises the water level high enough to lift its ice dam. Long NE-SW-trending fissure systems extend from the central volcano. The most prominent of these is the noted Laki (Skaftar) fissure, which extends to the SW and produced the world's largest known historical lava flow during an eruption in 1783. The 15-cu-km basaltic Laki lavas were erupted over a 7-month period from a 27-km-long fissure system. Extensive crop damage and livestock losses caused a severe famine that resulted in the loss of one-fifth of the population of Iceland.

Karymsky, Eastern Kamchatka (Russia)

54.049°N, 159.443°E, Summit elev. 1513 m

KVERT reported that a thermal anomaly over Karymsky was visible in satellite images during 2-3 January. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-color scale). Dates are based on UTC times; specific events are in local time where noted.

Geological summary: Karymsky, the most active volcano of Kamchatka's eastern volcanic zone, is a symmetrical stratovolcano constructed within a 5-km-wide caldera that formed during the early Holocene. The caldera cuts the south side of the Pleistocene Dvor volcano and is located outside the north margin of the large mid-Pleistocene Polovinka caldera, which contains the smaller Akademia Nauk and Odnoboky calderas. Most seismicity preceding Karymsky eruptions originated beneath Akademia Nauk caldera, located immediately south. The caldera enclosing Karymsky formed about 7600-7700 radiocarbon years ago; construction of the stratovolcano began about 2000 years later. The latest eruptive period began about 500 years ago, following a 2300-year quiescence. Much of the cone is mantled by lava flows less than 200 years old. Historical eruptions have been vulcanian or vulcanian-strombolian with moderate explosive activity and occasional lava flows from the summit crater.

Kilauea, Hawaiian Islands (USA)

19.421°N, 155.287°W, Summit elev. 1222 m

HVO reported that lava effusion resumed at the vent in the lower W wall of Kilauea’s Halema`uma`u Crater at around 0400 on 5 January, ending a 3-day pause. The sulfur dioxide emission rate was about 3,300 tonnes per day on 6 January. Lava effused from the vent on most days during 6-11 January, though effusion paused and the lake crusted over for most of the day on 7 January. Several overflows onto older crust were observed after effusion resumed at around 2130 on 7 January through 8 January. The W surface of the lava lake was active during 9-10 January, though there were some more pauses in lava effusion from the W vent during 10-11 January. The Aviation Color Code and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Orange and Watch, respectively.

Geological summary: Kilauea overlaps the E flank of the massive Mauna Loa shield volcano in the island of Hawaii. Eruptions are prominent in Polynesian legends; written documentation since 1820 records frequent summit and flank lava flow eruptions interspersed with periods of long-term lava lake activity at Halemaumau crater in the summit caldera until 1924. The 3 x 5 km caldera was formed in several stages about 1,500 years ago and during the 18th century; eruptions have also originated from the lengthy East and Southwest rift zones, which extend to the ocean in both directions. About 90% of the surface of the basaltic shield volcano is formed of lava flows less than about 1,100 years old; 70% of the surface is younger than 600 years. The long-term eruption from the East rift zone between 1983 and 2018 produced lava flows covering more than 100 km2, destroyed hundreds of houses, and added new coastline.

Lewotolok, Lembata Island (Indonesia)

8.274°S, 123.508°E, Summit elev. 1431 m

PVMBG reported that the eruption at Lewotolok continued during 5-10 January. Variable density white-and-gray ash plumes rose as high as 600 m above the summit and drifted E and SE. Incandescent material was occasionally ejected up to 300 m from the vent and accompanied by rumbling. At 0848 on 11 January an ash plume rose 700 m above the volcano and drifted E. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-4) and the public was warned to stay 3 km away from the summit crater.

Geological summary: The Lewotolok (or Lewotolo) stratovolcano occupies the eastern end of an elongated peninsula extending north into the Flores Sea, connected to Lembata (formerly Lomblen) Island by a narrow isthmus. It is symmetrical when viewed from the north and east. A small cone with a 130-m-wide crater constructed at the SE side of a larger crater forms the volcano's high point. Many lava flows have reached the coastline. Eruptions recorded since 1660 have consisted of explosive activity from the summit crater.

Merapi, Central Java (Indonesia)

7.54°S, 110.446°E, Summit elev. 2910 m

BPPTKG reported no notable morphological changes to Merapi’s summit lava dome, though the dome just below the SW rim had increased about 2 m in height during 31 December 2021 to 6 January 2022. The estimated dome volumes were over 1.67 million cubic meters for the SW dome and just over 3 million cubic meters for the summit dome. The intensity of the seismic signals remained at high levels. As many as 69 lava avalanches traveled a maximum of 2 km SW down the Bebeng drainage. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-4), and the public was warned to stay 3-5 km away from the summit based on location.

Geological summary: Merapi, one of Indonesia's most active volcanoes, lies in one of the world's most densely populated areas and dominates the landscape immediately north of the major city of Yogyakarta. It is the youngest and southernmost of a volcanic chain extending NNW to Ungaran volcano. Growth of Old Merapi during the Pleistocene ended with major edifice collapse perhaps about 2,000 years ago, leaving a large arcuate scarp cutting the eroded older Batulawang volcano. Subsequent growth of the steep-sided Young Merapi edifice, its upper part unvegetated due to frequent activity, began SW of the earlier collapse scarp. Pyroclastic flows and lahars accompanying growth and collapse of the steep-sided active summit lava dome have devastated cultivated lands on the western-to-southern flanks and caused many fatalities.

Pavlof, United States

55.417°N, 161.894°W, Summit elev. 2493 m

AVO reported that elevated seismicity at Pavlof during 5-11 January was characterized by daily periods of tremor. High surface temperatures consistent with active lava effusion near the vent were identified in satellite images each day. The lava flow on the SE flank lengthened from 80 to 300 m during 2-6 January based on high-resolution satellite data. Robust steaming was observed by pilots and in webcam images on 9 January. The Volcano Alert Level remained at Watch and the Aviation Color Code remained at Orange.

Geological summary: 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. 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 took place in 1911, at the end of a 5-year-long eruptive episode, when a fissure opened on the N flank, ejecting large blocks and issuing lava flows.

Rincon de la Vieja, Costa Rica

10.83°N, 85.324°W, Summit elev. 1916 m

OVSICORI-UNA reported that multiple eruptive events were recorded at Rincón de la Vieja on 5 January, though most of them were small. A notable explosion at 1833 ejected incandescent material above the crater rim that was visible in webcam images for about 30 seconds. Darkness obscured views of a plume and no ash was visible in satellite images. Residents reported hearing a loud explosion and sounds indicating active lahars; lahars in the Penjamo and Azufrado rivers reached residential areas within 50 minutes of the event. An eruptive event was recorded at 1858 on 10 January, though cloud cover prevented visual confirmation.

Geological summary: Rincón de la Vieja, the largest volcano in NW Costa Rica, is a remote volcanic complex in the Guanacaste Range. The volcano consists of an elongated, arcuate NW-SE-trending ridge constructed within the 15-km-wide early Pleistocene Guachipelín caldera, whose rim is exposed on the south side. Sometimes known as the "Colossus of Guanacaste," it has an estimated volume of 130 km3 and contains at least nine major eruptive centers. Activity has migrated to the SE, where the youngest-looking craters are located. The twin cone of Santa María volcano, the highest peak of the complex, is located at the eastern end of a smaller, 5-km-wide caldera and has a 500-m-wide crater. A Plinian eruption producing the 0.25 km3 Río Blanca tephra about 3,500 years ago was the last major magmatic eruption. All subsequent eruptions, including numerous historical eruptions possibly dating back to the 16th century, have been from the prominent active crater containing a 500-m-wide acid lake located ENE of Von Seebach crater.

Sangay, Ecuador

2.005°S, 78.341°W, Summit elev. 5286 m

IG staff observed Sangay during an overflight on 27 December 2021, focusing on the summit area along with the SE and NE flanks. Two vents were active in the summit area, a central vent and a western vent in a scoria cone. The central vent produced Strombolian explosions and had temperatures as high as 645 degrees Celsius. Lava from this vent fed a flow on the SE flank that was 540 m long; the maximum temperature of the flow was 580 degrees. The W vent ejected blocks and gas emissions, and had temperatures as high as 410 degrees. The third vent, on the NE flank, produced gas emissions and temperatures above 515 degrees. A lava flow from this vent had descended 370 m and was as hot as 450 degrees. The team took gas measurements around the summit with a MultiGAS instrument, collected ash samples, and acquired data and conducted maintenance at the SAGA monitoring station, 6 km SW of the summit.

Geological summary: The isolated Sangay volcano, located east of the Andean crest, is the southernmost of Ecuador's volcanoes and its most active. The steep-sided, glacier-covered, dominantly andesitic volcano grew within horseshoe-shaped calderas of two previous edifices, which were destroyed by collapse to the east, producing large debris avalanches that reached the Amazonian lowlands. The modern edifice dates back to at least 14,000 years ago. It towers above the tropical jungle on the east side; on the other sides flat plains of ash have been sculpted by heavy rains into steep-walled canyons up to 600 m deep. The earliest report of a historical eruption was in 1628. More or less continuous eruptions were reported from 1728 until 1916, and again from 1934 to the present. The almost constant activity has caused frequent changes to the morphology of the summit crater complex.

Semisopochnoi, Aleutian Islands (USA)

51.93°N, 179.58°E, Summit elev. 1221 m

AVO reported that low-level eruptive activity and elevated seismicity at Semisopochnoi's North Cerberus crater continued during 4-11 January. Almost daily explosions (one per day during 4-8 January and a few during 10-11 January) were recorded by the local seismic network. The weather was mostly cloudy, though ash and/or steam plumes were occasionally visible in webcam images. Low-level ash clouds were visible in webcam images during 10-11 January. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Watch.

Geological summary: Semisopochnoi, the largest subaerial volcano of the western Aleutians, is 20 km wide at sea level and contains an 8-km-wide caldera. It formed as a result of collapse of a low-angle, dominantly basaltic volcano following the eruption of a large volume of dacitic pumice. The high point of the island is Anvil Peak, a double-peaked late-Pleistocene cone that forms much of the island's northern part. The three-peaked Mount Cerberus was constructed within the caldera during the Holocene. Each of the peaks contains a summit crater; lava flows on the N flank of Cerberus appear younger than those on the south side. Other post-caldera volcanoes include the symmetrical Sugarloaf Peak SSE of the caldera and Lakeshore Cone, a small cinder cone at the edge of Fenner Lake in the NE part of the caldera. Most documented eruptions have originated from Cerberus, although Coats (1950) considered that both Sugarloaf and Lakeshore Cone could have been recently active.

Sheveluch, Central Kamchatka (Russia)

56.653°N, 161.36°E, Summit elev. 3283 m

KVERT reported that a thermal anomaly over Sheveluch was identified in satellite images during 1-7 January. Intense steam-and-gas emissions with ash were visible during 3 and 5-6 January; plumes rose as high as 4 km (13,100 ft) a.s.l. and drifted 180 km N and W. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-color scale). Dates are based on UTC times; specific events are in local time where noted.

Geological summary: The high, isolated massif of Sheveluch volcano (also spelled Shiveluch) rises above the lowlands NNE of the Kliuchevskaya volcano group. The 1300 km3 volcano is one of Kamchatka's largest and most active volcanic structures. The summit of roughly 65,000-year-old Stary Shiveluch is truncated by a broad 9-km-wide late-Pleistocene caldera breached to the south. Many lava domes dot its outer flanks. The Molodoy Shiveluch lava dome complex was constructed during the Holocene within the large horseshoe-shaped caldera; Holocene lava dome extrusion also took place on the flanks of Stary Shiveluch. At least 60 large eruptions have occurred during the Holocene, making it the most vigorous andesitic volcano of the Kuril-Kamchatka arc. Widespread tephra layers from these eruptions have provided valuable time markers for dating volcanic events in Kamchatka. Frequent collapses of dome complexes, most recently in 1964, have produced debris avalanches whose deposits cover much of the floor of the breached caldera.

Suwanosejima, Ryukyu Islands (Japan)

29.638°N, 129.714°E, Summit elev. 796 m

JMA reported that incandescence at Suwanosejima's Ontake Crater was visible nightly during 3-10 January and 368 explosions were recorded. The explosions produced ash plumes that rose as high as 2 km above the crater rim and ejected material up to 1.1 km away from the crater. Eruption sounds were heard in Toshima village (4 km SSW) and ash fell there during 7-10 January. The Alert Level remained at 3 and the public was warned to stay 2 km away from the crater.

Geological summary: The 8-km-long, spindle-shaped island of Suwanosejima in the northern Ryukyu Islands consists of an andesitic stratovolcano with two historically active summit craters. The summit is truncated by a large breached crater extending to the sea on the east flank that was formed by edifice collapse. Suwanosejima, one of Japan's most frequently active volcanoes, was in a state of intermittent strombolian activity from Otake, the NE summit crater, that began in 1949 and lasted until 1996, after which periods of inactivity lengthened. The largest historical eruption took place in 1813-14, when thick scoria deposits blanketed residential areas, and the SW crater produced two lava flows that reached the western coast. At the end of the eruption the summit of Otake collapsed forming a large debris avalanche and creating the horseshoe-shaped Sakuchi caldera, which extends to the eastern coast. The island remained uninhabited for about 70 years after the 1813-1814 eruption. Lava flows reached the eastern coast of the island in 1884. Only about 50 people live on the island.

Yasur, Vanuatu

19.532°S, 169.447°E, Summit elev. 361 m

The Vanuatu Meteorology and Geohazards Department (VMGD) reported that activity at Yasur continued at a high level of “major unrest,” as defined by the Alert Level 2 status. Ash-and-gas emissions were visible in webcam images at 0845, 0900, 0915 on 7 January rising above the crater rim and drifting NW. Alert Level 2 is the middle level on a scale of 0-4. The public was reminded not to enter the restricted area within 600 m around the cone, defined by Danger Zone A on the hazard map.

Geological summary: Yasur, the best-known and most frequently visited of the Vanuatu volcanoes, has been in more-or-less continuous Strombolian and Vulcanian activity since Captain Cook observed ash eruptions in 1774. This style of activity may have continued for the past 800 years. Located at the SE tip of Tanna Island, this mostly unvegetated pyroclastic cone has a nearly circular, 400-m-wide summit crater. The active cone is largely contained within the small Yenkahe caldera, and is the youngest of a group of Holocene volcanic centers constructed over the down-dropped NE flank of the Pleistocene Tukosmeru volcano. The Yenkahe horst is located within the Siwi ring fracture, a 4-km-wide, horseshoe-shaped caldera associated with eruption of the andesitic Siwi pyroclastic sequence. Active tectonism along the Yenkahe horst accompanying eruptions has raised Port Resolution harbor more than 20 m during the past century.

Reference:

Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 5 January-11 January 2022 Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert

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  • Direct communication
  • New features and apps suggestions
  • Early access to new apps and features

$200 /year

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