Activity for the week of 22 July-28 July 2009
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 2300 UTC every Wednesday, notices of volcanic activity posted on these pages 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 on various volcanoes are published monthly in the Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network.
New Activity / Unrest
| Kyushu (Japan)
| 31.593°N, 130.657°E
| Elevation 1117 m
Based on information from JMA, the Tokyo VAAC reported that on 22 July explosions from Sakura-jima produced plumes that rose to altitudes of 1.8-2.4 km (6,000-8,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted E and SE. On 23 July and 27 July pilots observed ash plumes that rose to altitudes of 2.1 and 3 km (7,000 and 10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted E and SW, respectively. Explosions were reported during 24-25 and 28 July.
Source: Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Central Kamchatka (Russia)
| 56.653°N, 161.36°E
| Elevation 3283 m
KVERT reported that during 17-18 and 20-24 July seismic activity from Shiveluch was above background levels. During 17-20 and 22 July, gas-and-steam plumes seen on a video camera rose to an altitude of 3.7 km (12,100 ft) a.s.l. Based on interpretations of seismic data, ash plumes possibly rose to an altitude of 5.2 km (17,000 ft) a.s.l. on 20, 21, and 22 July, and steam-and-gas plumes with some ash content were noted on other days. Analyses of satellite imagery revealed a large daily thermal anomaly over the lava dome, and steam plumes that drifted as far away as 40 km on 18 and 20 July. The Level of Concern Color Code remained at Orange.
Based on analyses of satellite imagery and information from KEMSD, the Tokyo VAAC reported that during 23-24 and 27-28 July eruptions produced plumes that rose to altitudes of 4.6-6.1 km (15,000-20,000 ft) a.s.l. According to news sources, an ash plume rose to an altitude of 7 km (23,000 ft) a.s.l. late on 25 July. Increased seismicity, powerful ash bursts, and avalanches were also reported.
Sources: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT), Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC), RIA Novosti
| Komba Island (Indonesia)
| 7.791°S, 123.585°E
| Elevation 633 m
Based on analyses of satellite imagery, the Darwin VAAC reported that on 23 July an ash plume from Batu Tara rose to an altitude of 2.4 km (8,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted 55 km W. On 27 and 28 July, ash plumes rose to an altitude of 1.5 km (5,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted as far away as 150 km NW.
Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
| 42.833°S, 72.646°W
| Elevation 1122 m
Based on web camera views from the S, SERNAGEOMIN reported that during 16-22 July gas-and-ash plumes rose 1.5 km from Chaitén's growing Domo Nuevo 1 and Domo Nuevo 2 lava-dome complex. Collapses originating from unstable slopes generated block-and-ash flows, particularly in the W area of the complex. The Alert Level remained at Red. Based on web camera views and analyses of satellite imagery, the Buenos Aires VAAC reported that on 28 July an ash plume rose to an altitude of 1.8 km (6,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted NE.
Sources: Servicio Nacional de Geología y Minería (SERNAGEOMIN), Buenos Aires Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Hawaiian Islands (USA)
| 19.421°N, 155.287°W
| Elevation 1222 m
During 22-28 July, HVO reported that lava flowed SE from underneath Kilauea's Thanksgiving Eve Breakout (TEB) and rootless shield complex through a lava tube system, reaching the Waikupanaha ocean entry. Thermal anomalies detected in satellite images and visual observations revealed active surface flows at several locations on the pali. Explosions from the Waikupanaha ocean entry were reported on 22 July. The vent in Halema'uma'u crater continued to produce a diffuse white plume that drifted mainly SW. Small amounts of ash-sized "rock dust" were retrieved from collection bins placed near the plume during the reporting period. The sulfur dioxide emission rate at the summit remained elevated; measurements were 800, 500, and 950 tonnes per day on 22, 24, and 27 July, respectively. The 2003-2007 average rate was 140 tonnes per day; between the 30 June rockfall sequence and 19 July rates were 200-400 tonnes per day.
Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)
Nevado del Huila
| 2.93°N, 76.03°W
| Elevation 5364 m
INGEOMINAS reported that during 22-28 July four pulses of seismic tremor from Nevado del Huila indicated explosions. Gas plumes were seen on a web camera and during a commercial flight. On 23 July, ashfall was reported in an area to the NW. The Alert Level remained at III (Yellow; "changes in the behavior of volcanic activity").
Source: Servicio Geológico Colombiano (SGC)
| 2.005°S, 78.341°W
| Elevation 5286 m
Based on a pilot observation, the Washington VAAC reported that on 23 July a possible ash plume from Sangay rose to an altitude of 7.9 km (26,000 ft) a.s.l. The plume was not identified in satellite imagery.
Source: Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Matua Island (Russia)
| 48.092°N, 153.2°E
| Elevation 1496 m
Based on analyses of satellite imagery, SVERT reported that on 22 July a gas-and-steam plume from Sarychev Peak drifted 35 km N. Cloud cover prevented observations during 23-26 July. On 27 July, a steam-and-gas plume possibly containing some ash rose to an altitude of 3.7 km (12,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted 55 km NW.
Sources: Sakhalin Volcanic Eruption Response Team (SVERT), Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Ryukyu Islands (Japan)
| 29.638°N, 129.714°E
| Elevation 796 m
Based on information from JMA, the Tokyo VAAC reported explosions from Suwanose-jima during 23-24 July. Details of possible resultant ash plumes were not reported.
Source: Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
News Feeds and Google Placemarks
The RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed is identical to the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report minus some features including the header information (latitude and longitude and summit elevation), the Geologic Summary, and a link to the volcano's page from the Global Volcanism Program. Each volcano report includes a link from the volcano's name back to the more complete information in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report on the Smithsonian website.
The CAP (Common Alerting Protocol) feeds are XML files specifically formatted for disaster management. They are similar in content to the RSS feed, but contain no active links.
A Google Earth network link for the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report can be loaded into the free Google Earth software, and in turn will load placemarks for volcanoes in the current weekly report. Placemark balloons include the volcano name, report date, report text, sources, and links back to the GVP volcano page for that volcano and to the complete Weekly Report for that week.
Criteria & Disclaimers
The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report does not necessarily include all volcanic activity that occurred on Earth during the week. More than a dozen volcanoes globally have displayed more-or-less continuous eruptive activity for decades or longer, and such routine activity is typically not reported here. Moreover, Earth's sea-floor volcanism is seldom reported even though in theory it represents the single most prolific source of erupted material. The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report summarizes volcanic activity that meets one or more of the following criteria:
- A volcano observatory raises or lowers the alert level at the volcano.
- A volcanic ash advisory has been released by a volcanic ash advisory center (VAAC) stating that an ash cloud has been produced from the volcano.
- A verifiable news report of new activity or a change in activity at the volcano has been issued.
- Observers have reported a significant change in volcanic activity. Such activity can include, but is not restricted to, pyroclastic flows, lahars, lava flows, dome collapse, or increased unrest.
Volcanoes are included in the "New Activity/Unrest" section of the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report if the activity occurs after at least 3 months of quiescence. Once a volcano is included in the "New Activity/Unrest" section, updates will remain in that section unless the activity continues for more than 1 month without escalating, after which time updates will be listed in the "Continuing Activity" section. Volcanoes are also included in the "New Activity/Unrest" section if the volcano is undergoing a period of relatively high unrest, or increasing unrest. This is commonly equal to Alert Level Orange on a scale of Green, Yellow, Orange, Red, where Red is the highest alert. Or alert level 3 on a scale of 1-4 or 1-5.
It is important to note that volcanic activity meeting one or more of these criteria may occur during the week, but may not be included in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report because we did not receive a report.
1. The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report is intended to provide timely information about global volcanism on a weekly basis. Consequently, the report is generated rapidly by summarizing volcanic reports from various sources, with little time for fact checking. The accuracy of the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report is dependent upon the quality of the volcanic activity reports we receive. Reports published in the Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network are monthly, and more carefully reviewed, although all of the volcanoes discussed in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report are not necessarily reported in the Bulletin. Because of our emphasis on rapid reporting on the web we have avoided diacritical marks. Reports are updated on the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report web page as they are received, therefore information may be included regarding events that occurred before the current report period.
2. Rapidly developing events lead to coverage that is often fragmentary. Volcanoes, their eruptions, and their plumes and associated atmospheric effects are complex phenomena that may require months to years of data analysis in order to create a comprehensive summary and interpretation of events.
3. Preliminary accounts sometimes contain exaggerations and "false alarms," and accordingly, this report may include some events ultimately found to be erroneous or misleading.
4. Many news agencies do not archive the articles they post on the Internet, and therefore the links to some sources may not be active. To obtain information about the cited articles that are no longer available on the Internet contact the source.
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RSS and CAP Feeds
An RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed for the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report first made available on 5 March 2008 can be utilized with the aid of various free downloadable readers. The report content of the news feed is identical to the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report minus some features including the header information (latitude and longitude and summit elevation), the Geologic Summary, and a link to the volcano's page from the Global Volcanism Program. Each volcano report includes a link from the volcano's name back to the more complete information in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report on the Smithsonian website. On 12 March 2009, GeoRSS tags were added so that the latitude and longitude for each volcano could be included with the feed.
At the end of each individual report is a list of the sources used. We would like to emphasize that the World Organization of Volcano Observatories (WOVO) website (http://www.wovo.org/) lists the regional volcano observatories that have the most authoritative data for many of these events.
CAP (Common Alerting Protocol) feeds are XML files specifically formatted for disaster management.
Google Earth Placemarks
A Google Earth network link for the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report was first made available on 1 April 2009. This file can be loaded into the free Google Earth software, and in turn will load placemarks for volcanoes in the current weekly report. Placemark balloons include the volcano name, report date, report text, sources, and links back to the GVP volcano page for that volcano and to the complete Weekly Report for that week.