The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: June 22 – 28, 2022

the weekly volcanic activity report

New activity/unrest was reported for 4 volcanoes from June 22 to 28, 2022. During the same period, ongoing activity was reported for 18 volcanoes.

New activity/unrest: Bulusan, Luzon (Philippines) | Chikurachki, Paramushir Island (Russia) | Ebeko, Paramushir Island (Russia) | San Cristobal, Sierra de los Marrabios.

Ongoing activity: Aira, Kyushu (Japan) | Bezymianny, Central Kamchatka (Russia) | Dukono, Halmahera | Great Sitkin, Andreanof Islands (USA) | Karymsky, Eastern Kamchatka (Russia) | Kilauea, Hawaiian Islands (USA) | Krakatau, Sunda Strait | Lewotolok, Lembata Island | Merapi, Central Java | Ontakesan, Honshu (Japan) | Pavlof, Alaska Peninsula, Alaska | Ruang, Sangihe Islands | Ruapehu, North Island (New Zealand) | Semeru, Eastern Java | Semisopochnoi, Aleutian Islands (USA) | Sheveluch, Central Kamchatka (Russia) | Suwanosejima, Ryukyu Islands (Japan) | Whakaari/White Island, North Island (New Zealand).

New activity/unrest

Bulusan, Luzon (Philippines)

12.769°N, 124.056°E | Summit elev. 1535 m

PHIVOLCS reported that unrest continued at Bulusan during 22-28 June. Emissions rose 100-400 m above the summit and drifted NW and W; cloudy weather prevented views of the volcano on 26 June. Sulfur dioxide emissions were 559-751 tonnes per day during 22-26 June. The seismic network recorded 7-65 daily volcanic earthquakes. A small-volume lahar was detected during a thunderstorm, beginning at 1904 on 26 June and lasting for 54 minutes based on seismic and infrasound data. Narrow, channel-confined lahar deposits were seen later along the Calang Creek on the SW flank, in the Cogon barangay. The Alert Level remained at 1 (on a scale of 0-5) and PHIVOLCS reminded the public not to enter the 4-km-radius Permanent Danger Zone (PDZ) nor the 2 km Extended Danger Zone (EDZ) on the SE flank.

Geological summary: Luzon’s southernmost volcano, Bulusan, was constructed along the rim of the 11-km-diameter dacitic-to-rhyolitic Irosin caldera, which was formed about 36,000 years ago. It lies at the SE end of the Bicol volcanic arc occupying the peninsula of the same name that forms the elongated SE tip of Luzon. A broad, flat moat is located below the topographically prominent SW rim of Irosin caldera; the NE rim is buried by the andesitic complex. Bulusan is flanked by several other large intracaldera lava domes and cones, including the prominent Mount Jormajan lava dome on the SW flank and Sharp Peak to the NE. The summit is unvegetated and contains a 300-m-wide, 50-m-deep crater. Three small craters are located on the SE flank. Many moderate explosive eruptions have been recorded since the mid-19th century.

Chikurachki, Paramushir Island (Russia)

50.324°N, 155.461°E | Summit elev. 1781 m

KVERT reported that a thermal anomaly over Chikurachki was identified on 21 June and an explosive eruption occurred on 24 June. Explosions recorded during 0730-2100 on 24 June (local time) produced ash plumes that rose to 4.5 km (14,800 ft) a.s.l. A 14 x 30 km ash cloud was visible in satellite images at 0850 drifting 25 km SE, prompting KVERT to raise the Aviation Color Code to Orange (the second highest level on a four-color scale). A VONA issued at 1445 on 25 June (local time) stated that only gas-and-steam emissions were rising from the volcano and that the Aviation Color Code was lowered to Yellow. The ash cloud from the explosive phase had drifted about 790 km SE. Satellite images on 26 June indicated no additional explosions; gas-and-steam emissions persisted. At 1624 (local time) the Aviation Color Code was lowered to Green.

Geological summary: Chikurachki, the highest volcano on Paramushir Island in the northern Kuriles, is a relatively small cone constructed on a high Pleistocene edifice. Oxidized basaltic-to-andesitic scoria deposits covering the upper part of the young cone give it a distinctive red color. Frequent basaltic Plinian eruptions have occurred during the Holocene. Lava flows have reached the sea and formed capes on the NW coast; several young lava flows are also present on the E flank beneath a scoria deposit. The Tatarinov group of six volcanic centers is located immediately to the south, and the Lomonosov cinder cone group, the source of an early Holocene lava flow that reached the saddle between it and Fuss Peak to the west, lies at the southern end of the N-S-trending Chikurachki-Tatarinov complex. In contrast to the frequently active Chikurachki, the Tatarinov centers are extensively modified by erosion and have a more complex structure. Tephrochronology gives evidence of an eruption around 1690 CE from Tatarinov, although its southern cone contains a sulfur-encrusted crater with fumaroles that were active along the margin of a crater lake until 1959.

Ebeko, Paramushir Island (Russia)

50.686°N, 156.014°E | Summit elev. 1103 m

KVERT reported that moderate activity at Ebeko continued according to volcanologists in Severo-Kurilsk (Paramushir Island), about 7 km E. Explosions generated ash plumes that rose up to 2.5 km (8,200 ft) a.s.l. and drifted S, SE, and NE during 18 and 22-23 June. A thermal anomaly over the volcano was identified in satellite images on 22 June. At 1510 local time on 24 June an ash plume was observed drifting 5 km SE at an altitude of 2.5 km (8,200 ft) a.s.l., prompting KVERT to raise the Aviation Color Code to Orange (the second highest level on a four-color scale).

Geological summary: The flat-topped summit of the central cone of Ebeko volcano, one of the most active in the Kuril Islands, occupies the northern end of Paramushir Island. Three summit craters located along a SSW-NNE line form Ebeko volcano proper, at the northern end of a complex of five volcanic cones. Blocky lava flows extend west from Ebeko and SE from the neighboring Nezametnyi cone. The eastern part of the southern crater contains strong solfataras and a large boiling spring. The central crater is filled by a lake about 20 m deep whose shores are lined with steaming solfataras; the northern crater lies across a narrow, low barrier from the central crater and contains a small, cold crescentic lake. Historical activity, recorded since the late-18th century, has been restricted to small-to-moderate explosive eruptions from the summit craters. Intense fumarolic activity occurs in the summit craters, on the outer flanks of the cone, and in lateral explosion craters.

San Cristobal, Sierra de los Marrabios

12.702°N, 87.004°W | Summit elev. 1745 m

According to a news article, INETER reported that at 0751 on 26 June a moderate explosion at San Cristóbal produced a gas-and-ash plume that rose 1.5 km above the crater rim and drifted WSW. A minor amount of ash fell in the communities of La Grecias 3 and Las Grecias 4 (12 km WSW), and the city of El Viejo (18 km WSW). RSAM data spiked during the explosion and then returned to normal levels afterwards.

Geological summary: The San Cristóbal volcanic complex, consisting of five principal volcanic edifices, forms the NW end of the Marrabios Range. The symmetrical 1745-m-high youngest cone, named San Cristóbal (also known as El Viejo), is Nicaragua’s highest volcano and is capped by a 500 x 600 m wide crater. El Chonco, with several flank lava domes, is located 4 km W of San Cristóbal; it and the eroded Moyotepe volcano, 4 km NE of San Cristóbal, are of Pleistocene age. Volcán Casita, containing an elongated summit crater, lies immediately east of San Cristóbal and was the site of a catastrophic landslide and lahar in 1998. The Plio-Pleistocene La Pelona caldera is located at the eastern end of the complex. Historical eruptions from San Cristóbal, consisting of small-to-moderate explosive activity, have been reported since the 16th century. Some other 16th-century eruptions attributed to Casita volcano are uncertain and may pertain to other Marrabios Range volcanoes.

Ongoing activity

Aira, Kyushu (Japan)

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

JMA reported that nighttime incandescence at Minamidake Crater (at Aira Caldera’s Sakurajima volcano) was visible during 20-27 June. At 1221 on 27 June an eruptive event produced an ash plume that rose 1.5 km above the crater rim. 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.

Bezymianny, Central Kamchatka (Russia)

55.972°N, 160.595°E | Summit elev. 2882 m

KVERT reported that a thermal anomaly over Bezymianny was identified in satellite images during 17-26 June. The Alert Level was lowered to Yellow (the second lowest level on a four-color scale) on 26 June. Dates are based on UTC times; specific events are in local time where noted.

Geological summary: Prior to its noted 1955-56 eruption, Bezymianny had been considered extinct. The modern volcano, much smaller in size than its massive neighbors Kamen and Kliuchevskoi, was formed about 4700 years ago over a late-Pleistocene lava-dome complex and an ancestral edifice built about 11,000-7000 years ago. Three periods of intensified activity have occurred during the past 3000 years. The latest period, which was preceded by a 1000-year quiescence, began with the dramatic 1955-56 eruption. This eruption, similar to that of St. Helens in 1980, produced a large horseshoe-shaped crater that was formed by collapse of the summit and an associated lateral blast. Subsequent episodic but ongoing lava-dome growth, accompanied by intermittent explosive activity and pyroclastic flows, has largely filled the 1956 crater.

Dukono, Halmahera

1.693°N, 127.894°E | Summit elev. 1229 m

Based on satellite and wind model data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 22-25 and 27 June ash plumes from Dukono rose to 2.1 km (7,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted N, NW, and W. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale of 1-4), and the public was warned to remain outside of the 2-km exclusion zone.

Geological summary: Reports from this remote volcano in northernmost Halmahera are rare, but Dukono has been one of Indonesia’s most active volcanoes. More-or-less continuous explosive eruptions, sometimes accompanied by lava flows, occurred from 1933 until at least the mid-1990s, when routine observations were curtailed. During a major eruption in 1550, a lava flow filled in the strait between Halmahera and the north-flank cone of Gunung Mamuya. This complex volcano presents a broad, low profile with multiple summit peaks and overlapping craters. Malupang Wariang, 1 km SW of the summit crater complex, contains a 700 x 570 m crater that has also been active during historical time.

Great Sitkin, Andreanof Islands (USA)

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

AVO reported that the eruption at Great Sitkin continued during 21-28 June. Elevated surface temperatures were identified in satellite images during 26-27 June; weather clouds obscured satellite and webcam views on the other days. Seismicity was low. 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.

Karymsky, Eastern Kamchatka (Russia)

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

KVERT reported that a thermal anomaly over Karymsky was identified in satellite images during 17 and 19-23 June. 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 continued to effuse from a vent in the lower W wall of Kilauea’s Halema`uma`u Crater during 22-28 June, entering the lava lake and flowing onto the crater floor. The lake remained active all week, and nearly continuous breakouts occurred along the margins. 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.

Krakatau, Sunda Strait

6.102°S, 105.423°E | Summit elev. 155 m

PVMBG reported that at 1712 on 25 June an eruptive event at Anak Krakatau produced a dense black ash plume that rose 400 m above the summit and slowly drifted SW. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-4), and the public was warned to stay at least 5 km away from the crater.

Geological summary: The renowned volcano Krakatau (frequently misstated as Krakatoa) lies in the Sunda Strait between Java and Sumatra. Collapse of the ancestral edifice, perhaps in 416 or 535 CE, formed a 7-km-wide caldera. Remnants of that volcano are preserved in Verlaten and Lang Islands; subsequently Rakata, Danan, and Perbuwatan volcanoes were formed, coalescing to create the pre-1883 Krakatau Island. Caldera collapse during the catastrophic 1883 eruption destroyed Danan and Perbuwatan, and left only a remnant of Rakata. This eruption caused more than 36,000 fatalities, most as a result of tsunamis that swept the adjacent coastlines of Sumatra and Java. Pyroclastic surges traveled 40 km across the Sunda Strait and reached the Sumatra coast. After a quiescence of less than a half century, the post-collapse cone of Anak Krakatau (Child of Krakatau) was constructed within the 1883 caldera at a point between the former cones of Danan and Perbuwatan. Anak Krakatau has been the site of frequent eruptions since 1927.

Lewotolok, Lembata Island

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

PVMBG reported that the eruption at Lewotolok continued during 22-28 June. An eruptive event was recorded at 2235 on 24 June by the seismic network, though the event was not visually observed. 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, and 3.5 and 4 km away from the crater on the SE flank and E and NE flanks, respectively.

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

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

BPPTKG reported that the eruption at Merapi continued during 17-23 June. The heights and morphologies of the SW lava dome and the central lava dome were unchanged from the previous week, and seismicity remained at high levels. As many as 70 lava avalanches traveled down the Bebeng drainage on the SW flank, reaching a maximum distance of 1.8 km. Seismicity remained high. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-4), and the public was warned to stay 3-7 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.

Ontakesan, Honshu (Japan)

35.893°N, 137.48°E | Summit elev. 3067 m

Inflation and increased seismicity were detected at Ontakesan in February, causing JMA to raise the Alert Level. Inflation ceased in late February and deformation rates had stabilized. Seismicity continued to fluctuate, but decreased in mid-March and volcanic tremor ceased on 19 March. No changes in emissions were observed on 4 June. JMA lowered the Alert Level for Ontakesan to 1 (on a scale of 1-5) on 23 June.

Geological summary: The massive Ontakesan stratovolcano, the second highest volcano in Japan, lies at the southern end of the Northern Japan Alps. Ascending this volcano is one of the major objects of religious pilgrimage in central Japan. It is constructed within a largely buried 4 x 5 km caldera and occupies the southern end of the Norikura volcanic zone, which extends northward to Yakedake volcano. The older volcanic complex consisted of at least four major stratovolcanoes constructed from about 680,000 to about 420,000 years ago, after which Ontakesan was inactive for more than 300,000 years. The broad, elongated summit of the younger edifice is cut by a series of small explosion craters along a NNE-trending line. Several phreatic eruptions post-date the roughly 7300-year-old Akahoya tephra from Kikai caldera. The first historical eruption took place in 1979 from fissures near the summit. A non-eruptive landslide in 1984 produced a debris avalanche and lahar that swept down valleys south and east of the volcano. Very minor phreatic activity caused a dusting of ash near the summit in 1991 and 2007. A significant phreatic explosion in September 2014, when a large number of hikers were at or near the summit, resulted in many fatalities.

Pavlof, Alaska Peninsula, Alaska

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

AVO reported that the eruption at a vent on Pavlof’s upper E flank was ongoing during 21-28 June, and seismic tremor persisted. Daily elevated surface temperatures identified in satellite images were consistent with the continuing effusion of short (615 m or less) lava flows. 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.

Ruang, Sangihe Islands

2.3°N, 125.37°E | Summit elev. 725 m

An increased number of deep volcanic earthquakes at Ruang in April prompted PVMBG to raise the Alert Level to 2 (on a scale of 1-4). A total of 232 deep volcanic earthquakes were recorded by the seismic network during 1 April-22 June, with just over half of them occurring in early to mid-April. No data was recorded from 18 April through 11 May due to technical difficulties. The network recorded 6-20 events during 11-31 May and just 1-2 events during 1-21 June. PVMBG lowered the Alert Level to 1 on 23 June.

Geological summary: Ruang volcano, not to be confused with the better known Raung volcano on Java, is the southernmost volcano in the Sangihe Island arc, north of Sulawesi Island. The 4 x 5 km island volcano rises to 725 m across a narrow strait SW of the larger Tagulandang Island. The summit contains a crater partially filled by a lava dome initially emplaced in 1904. Explosive eruptions recorded since 1808 have often been accompanied by lava dome formation and pyroclastic flows that have damaged inhabited areas.

Ruapehu, North Island (New Zealand)

39.28°S, 175.57°E | Summit elev. 2797 m

On 28 June GeoNet reported that it had been 10 days since the last notable tremor at Ruapehu and the level remained weak. Lake water temperatures declined to 21 degrees Celsius on 14 June from a high of 40 degrees Celsius recorded in early May; temperatures had increased to 25 degrees Celsius during the previous two weeks. Gas emissions continued to fluctuate based on data collected during overflights and were about 10% less on 23 June than on 13 May, though the sulfur dioxide rate during 24-25 June was comparable to those recorded in mid-May, based on gas measuring equipment recently installed at the volcano. The emission, water temperature and seismic data together indicated continuing moderate levels of unrest. The Volcanic Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale from 0-5) and the Aviation Color Code remained at Yellow.

Geological summary: Ruapehu, one of New Zealand’s most active volcanoes, is a complex stratovolcano constructed during at least four cone-building episodes dating back to about 200,000 years ago. The dominantly andesitic 110 km3 volcanic massif is elongated in a NNE-SSW direction and surrounded by another 100 km3 ring plain of volcaniclastic debris, including the NW-flank Murimoto debris-avalanche deposit. A series of subplinian eruptions took place between about 22,600 and 10,000 years ago, but pyroclastic flows have been infrequent. The broad summait area and flank contain at least six vents active during the Holocene. Frequent mild-to-moderate explosive eruptions have been recorded from the Te Wai a-Moe (Crater Lake) vent, and tephra characteristics suggest that the crater lake may have formed as recently as 3,000 years ago. Lahars resulting from phreatic eruptions at the summit crater lake are a hazard to a ski area on the upper flanks and lower river valleys.

Semeru, Eastern Java

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

PVMBG reported that the eruption at Semeru continued during 22-28 June. Weather clouds prevented visual observations on most days; at 0628 on 24 June an eruptive event produced an ash plume that rose 700 m and drifted SW. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-4). The public was warned to stay at least 5 km away from the summit, and 500 m from Kobokan drainages within 17 km of the summit, along with other drainages originating on Semeru, including the Bang, Kembar, and Sat, due to lahar, avalanche, and pyroclastic flow hazards.

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.

Semisopochnoi, Aleutian Islands (USA)

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

AVO reported that low-level eruptive activity at Semisopochnoi’s North Cerberus cone continued during 21-27 June. Periods of low-amplitude tremor and a few small low-frequency earthquakes were recorded by the seismic network. Weather clouds often prevented satellite and webcam views; sulfur dioxide emissions were detected in satellite images during 23-24 June and a robust steam plume was visible in webcam images during 25-26 June. 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 17-23 June and the eruption characterized by explosions, hot avalanches, and lava-dome extrusion continued. Webcam images recorded explosions on 19 and 21 June that sent ash plumes to 7 and 5 km (23,000 and 16,400 ft) a.s.l., respectively. The ash plumes were visible in satellite images drifting 255 km ENE and 70 km SW during 19-20 and 21 June. 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 the eruption at Suwanosejima’s Ontake Crater continued during 20-27 June. Emissions rose as high as 2 km above the crater rim and material was ejected as far as 200 m from the vent. 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.

Whakaari/White Island, North Island (New Zealand)

37.52°S, 177.18°E | Summit elev. 294 m

On 28 June GeoNet reported that activity at Whakaari/White Island had remained at a low level. Observations during an overflight the week before showed that fumaroles active on the crater floor did not contain ash. Gas emission rates had decreased compared to the last observations from mid-May, and the temperature of fumarolic emissions was low at 170 degrees Celsius on 22 June. Visual observations and data collected during the flight, coupled with data from automatically collected monitoring instruments, indicated almost no changes at the volcano in the previous few weeks. The Volcanic Alert Level remained at 1 and the Aviation Color Code remained at Green.

Geological summary: The uninhabited Whakaari/White Island is the 2 x 2.4 km emergent summit of a 16 x 18 km submarine volcano in the Bay of Plenty about 50 km offshore of North Island. The island consists of two overlapping andesitic-to-dacitic stratovolcanoes. The SE side of the crater is open at sea level, with the recent activity centered about 1 km from the shore close to the rear crater wall. Volckner Rocks, sea stacks that are remnants of a lava dome, lie 5 km NW. Descriptions of volcanism since 1826 have included intermittent moderate phreatic, phreatomagmatic, and Strombolian eruptions; activity there also forms a prominent part of Maori legends. The formation of many new vents during the 19th and 20th centuries caused rapid changes in crater floor topography. Collapse of the crater wall in 1914 produced a debris avalanche that buried buildings and workers at a sulfur-mining project. Explosive activity in December 2019 took place while tourists were present, resulting in many fatalities. The official government name Whakaari/White Island is a combination of the full Maori name of Te Puia o Whakaari (“The Dramatic Volcano”) and White Island (referencing the constant steam plume) given by Captain James Cook in 1769.

Reference:

Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report – June 22 – 28, 2022 – Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert

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