Activity for the week of 10 March-16 March 2010
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
| 11.538°N, 85.622°W
| Elevation 1700 m
According to the Washington VAAC, INETER reported an eruption from Concepción on 12 March. A rapidly-dissipating ash cloud was seen on satellite imagery almost 60 km E of the summit.
Source: Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Aeolian Islands (Italy)
| 38.789°N, 15.213°E
| Elevation 924 m
INGV-CT reported strong explosions from Stromboli on 10 March mainly from craters located in the N part of the crater terrace, a flat area in the upper part of Sciara del Fuoco (a depression cutting the NW flank of the volcano). After one of the more powerful explosions, lava flowed over the NW edge of the crater terrace for tens of meters before fragmenting and producing small landslides of hot material that likely reached the sea.
Source: Sezione di Catania - Osservatorio Etneo (INGV)
| Costa Rica
| 10.025°N, 83.767°W
| Elevation 3340 m
OVSICORI-UNA reported that scientists visited Turrialba at night on 7 March. A gas plume, commonly seen drifting with prevailing winds, was seen that night rising 1.5 km above the crater and drifting NW. Noises from the crater were described as sounding like a jet engine and rumblings. A vent, formed in January, emitted gas at temperatures between 300 and 320 degrees Celsius. Small blocks 3-12 cm in diameter and different colors dominated the surface around the vent. Lithics ejected 30-50 m away from the vent measured 170 degrees Celsius. Incandescence seen at night originated from the vent which ejected reddish-colored tephra.
Source: Observatorio Vulcanologico y Sismologico de Costa Rica-Universidad Nacional (OVSICORI-UNA)
| 39.42°S, 71.93°W
| Elevation 2847 m
Based on web camera views, the Buenos Aires VAAC indicated that on 11 March a diffuse gas-and-ash plume from Villarrica drifted near the crater. Ash was not detected on satellite imagery. That same day, SERNAGEOMIN reported that, during an overflight, scientists saw a typical-looking gas plume drifting SW and tephra deposits on the flanks.
Sources: Buenos Aires Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC), Servicio Nacional de Geología y Minería (SERNAGEOMIN)
| 19.532°S, 169.447°E
| Elevation 361 m
On 12 March, Vanuatu Geohazards Observatory reported that thermal anomalies from Yasur were detected in satellite imagery during 8 December 2009-8 March 2010. They also noted an increase in activity since January 2010. Satellite images from 21 January showed significant sulfur dioxide gas emissions. Bombs were ejected sometime during the week of 1 March. Observations on 8 March and analyses of seismic data also indicated increased activity, and all three vents were active. The Vanuatu Volcano Alert Level (VVAL) was raised to 2 (on a scale of 0-4).
Source: Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazards Department (VMGD)
| Kyushu (Japan)
| 31.593°N, 130.657°E
| Elevation 1117 m
Based on information from JMA, the Tokyo VAAC reported that during 10-16 March multiple explosions from Sakura-jima produced plumes that rose to altitudes of 1.2-2.7 km (4,000-9,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted N, NE, E, and SE. Pilots reported that on 11 and 16 March ash plumes rose as high as 2.7 km (9,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SE and NE.
Source: Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Komba Island (Indonesia)
| 7.791°S, 123.585°E
| Elevation 633 m
Based on analyses of satellite imagery, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 10-16 March ash plumes from Batu Tara rose to altitudes of 2.1-2.4 km (7,000-8,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted about 20-150 km N, NW, W, SW, and SSE.
Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
| 42.833°S, 72.646°W
| Elevation 1122 m
Based on web camera views and analyses of satellite imagery, the Buenos Aires VAAC reported that a diffuse ash plume from Chaitén's lava-dome complex, likely mixed with steam and gas, drifted NE on 15 March.
Source: Buenos Aires Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Halmahera (Indonesia)
| 1.693°N, 127.894°E
| Elevation 1229 m
The Darwin VAAC reported that on 13 March an ash plume from Dukono was seen on satellite imagery drifting 75 km E at an altitude of 2.7 km (9,000 ft) a.s.l.
Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
| Eastern Kamchatka (Russia)
| 54.049°N, 159.443°E
| Elevation 1513 m
KVERT reported that during 5-12 March seismic activity from Karymsky was slightly above background levels, possibly indicating weak ash explosions. A weak daily thermal anomaly was detected in satellite imagery. Based on information from KEMSD, the Tokyo VAAC reported that an eruption on 12 March produced a plume that rose to an altitude of 5.8 km (19,000 ft) a.s.l. Ash was not identified on satellite imagery. The Level of Aviation Color Code remained at Yellow.
Sources: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT), Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Hawaiian Islands (USA)
| 19.421°N, 155.287°W
| Elevation 1222 m
During 10-16 March, HVO reported incandescence from an active lava surface about 200 m below a vent in the floor of Kilauea's Halema'uma'u crater. The lava surface circulated and both rose and drained through a pit in the cavity floor towards the end of the reporting period. Lava fountaining from the N edge of the pit was also noted. A plume from the vent drifted mainly SW, dropping small amounts of ash downwind. Measurements on 11 March indicated that the sulfur dioxide emission rate at the summit remained elevated at 600 tonnes per day. The 2003-2007 average rate was 140 tonnes per day.
Lava from beneath the Thanksgiving Eve Breakout (TEB) and rootless shield complex flowed SE through the upper portion of a lava tube system and broke out onto the surface. Thermal anomalies detected by satellite, and visual observations, revealed active lava flows on the pali and on the coastal plain.
Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)
| Central Kamchatka (Russia)
| 56.056°N, 160.642°E
| Elevation 4754 m
KVERT reported that during 5-12 March seismic activity from Kliuchevskoi was above background levels. Strombolian activity ejected material 300 m above the crater. Gas-and-steam plumes rose to altitudes of 5-6.8 km (16,000-22,000 ft) a.s.l. and were occasionally seen on satellite imagery drifting 80 km E. On 4 March new lava flows traveled down the S and NE flanks. A satellite image from 9 March showed that the S-flank lava flow was about 1.3 km long. Phreatic explosions sometimes occurred from the fronts of the lava flows. Satellite imagery also revealed a large daily thermal anomaly at the volcano. The Aviation Color Code level remained at Orange.
Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)
| Matua Island (Russia)
| 48.092°N, 153.2°E
| Elevation 1496 m
SVERT reported that a thermal anomaly on Sarychev Peak was detected by satellite on 9 March.
Source: Sakhalin Volcanic Eruption Response Team (SVERT)
| Central Kamchatka (Russia)
| 56.653°N, 161.36°E
| Elevation 3283 m
KVERT reported that during 5-12 March seismic activity from Shiveluch was above background levels, possibly indicating ash plumes rising to an altitude of 6.4 km (21,000 ft) a.s.l. Gas-and-steam plumes sometimes containing ash were seen daily, rising to altitudes of 2.5-3.5 km (8,200-11,500 ft) a.s.l. and drifting 130 km ESE; an ash plume rose to an altitude of 5.5 km (18,000 ft) a.s.l. on 10 March. Analyses of satellite imagery revealed a large daily thermal anomaly from the lava dome. The Aviation Color Code level remained at Orange.
Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)
| 16.72°N, 62.18°W
| Elevation 915 m
MVO reported that heavy rains during 5-12 March caused vigorous steaming from hot deposits emplaced after part of the Soufrière Hills lava dome collapsed on 11 February. Geysers were visible at Trants near the old Bramble airport, about 5 km NE, along with ash and steam ejections. Lahars descended multiple drainages around the volcano. Cooled lava shed from the dome on 8 and 9 March due to the heavy rains caused a series of pyroclastic flows to travel W down Gages Valley on 9 March, as far as 2 km. Ashfall from the pyroclastic flows was noted in NE Montserrat. There was no evidence of fresh lava extrusion. The Hazard Level remained at 3.
Source: Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO)
| 1.467°S, 78.442°W
| Elevation 5023 m
The IG reported that rains during 9-11 March caused lahars to descend drainages on Tungurahua's NW, W, SW, and S flanks. Lahars caused the road to Baños to close on 10 March and carried blocks up to 50 cm in diameter on 11 March. Fumarolic activity in the crater was seen during 12-15 March when the weather was clearer.
Source: Instituto Geofísico-Escuela Politécnica Nacional (IG)
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.
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