Home Reef volcano grows to 6 hectares (15 acres), Tonga

home reef volcano september 27 2022 esa worldview-3 f

Home Reef volcano re-emerged above sea level on September 9, 2022, prompting authorities in Tonga to issue a Hazard Alert to all marines to sail at least 5 km (3.1 miles) away from the volcano. The volcano is located midway between Metis Shoal and Late Island in the central Tonga islands. It was first reported active in the mid-19th century when an ephemeral island formed.

In 24 hours to 21:00 UTC on October 3, the Tonga Geological Services recorded a total of 16 eruptions, compared to 9 eruptions in the prior 24 hours.1

Volcano activity is progressive, with the last eruption recorded at 13:29 UTC on October 3.

The recent eruptions were dominantly steam with no volcanic ash detected in the last 24 hours.

On September 9, the volcano formed a land area of about 0.40 ha (1 acre) a.s.l. with a diameter of 70 m (230 feet) and an estimated elevation of 10 m (33 feet) a.s.l.2

At 21:40 UTC on September 28, the volcano was measured at 268 m (879 feet) North-South and 283 m (9288 feet) East-West, with an approximate total surface area of 6 hectares (15 acres) and an estimated height of 15 to 18 m (49 – 59 feet) above sea level.

home reef volcano september 27 2022 esa worldview-3 bg

Volcanic plume continues to disperse from the island carried by the ocean currents. The plume causes discoloration of the water and it is thickest within 1 km (0.6 miles) of the volcano and thinner within 2 km (1.2 miles) from the island.

The island has steep headlands on the eastern half and a smoother slope on the western half.

There is no risk to communities in Vava’u and Ha’apai.

All mariners are advised to sail beyond 4 km (2.5 miles) from the volcano until further notice.

home reef hazard map
Home Reef volcano on September 29, 2022
Home Reef volcano on September 29, 2022. Credit: Copernicus EU/Sentinel-2, EO Browser, The Watchers

The video below shows Planet’s high-resolution satellite images compiled to create a movie of Home Reef’s evolution from June to September 2022.

Geological summary

Home Reef, a submarine volcano midway between Metis Shoal and Late Island in the central Tonga islands, was first reported active in the mid-19th century when an ephemeral island formed.

An eruption in 1984 produced a 12 km (39 370 feet) high eruption plume, copious amounts of floating pumice, and an ephemeral island 500 x 1 500 m (1 640 x 4 900 feet) wide, with cliffs 30 – 50 m (98 – 164 feet) high that enclosed a water-filled crater.

Another island-forming eruption in 2006 produced widespread dacitic pumice rafts that reached as far as Australia.3

References:

1 Public notice on Home Reef volcano activity #23 – Volcano Watch Team of the Tonga Geological Services of the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources – October 3, 2022

2 Home Reef volcano re-emerges above sea level, Tonga – The Watchers – September 14, 2022

3 Home Reef – Geological summary – GVP

Featured image: Home Reef volcano eruption on September 9, 2022. Credit: Copernicus EU/Sentinel-2, EO Browser, The Watchers (True Color)

If you value what we do here, create your ad-free account and support our journalism.

Share:

Related articles

Producing content you read on this website takes a lot of time, effort, and hard work. If you value what we do here, select the level of your support and register your account.

Your support makes this project fully self-sustainable and keeps us independent and focused on the content we love to create and share.

All our supporters can browse the website without ads, allowing much faster speeds and a clean interface. Your comments will be instantly approved and you’ll have a direct line of communication with us from within your account dashboard. You can suggest new features and apps and you’ll be able to use them before they go live.

You can choose the level of your support.

Stay kind, vigilant and ready!

$5 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Instant comments
  • Direct communication
  • New features and apps suggestions
  • Early access to new apps and features

$50 /year

$10 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Instant comments
  • Direct communication
  • New features and apps suggestions
  • Early access to new apps and features

$100 /year

$25 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Instant comments
  • Direct communication
  • New features and apps suggestions
  • Early access to new apps and features

$200 /year

You can also support us by sending us a one-off payment using PayPal:

Leave a reply