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Smithsonian / USGS Weekly Volcanic Activity Report

You are currently viewing Archived reports for the week of 16 September-22 September 2015.


















 Activity for the week of 16 September-22 September 2015

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.

Name Location Activity
Aira Kyushu (Japan) New
Asosan Kyushu (Japan) New
Cotopaxi Ecuador New
Mauna Loa Hawaiian Islands (USA) New
Nevado del Ruiz Colombia New
Piton de la Fournaise Reunion Island (France) New

Batu Tara Komba Island (Indonesia) Ongoing
Cleveland Chuginadak Island (USA) Ongoing
Colima Mexico Ongoing
Dukono Halmahera (Indonesia) Ongoing
Karangetang Siau Island (Indonesia) Ongoing
Karymsky Eastern Kamchatka (Russia) Ongoing
Kilauea Hawaiian Islands (USA) Ongoing
Pacaya Guatemala Ongoing
Popocatepetl Mexico Ongoing
Sheveluch Central Kamchatka (Russia) Ongoing
Shishaldin Fox Islands (USA) Ongoing
Sinabung Indonesia Ongoing
Soufriere Hills Montserrat Ongoing
Ubinas Peru Ongoing


New Activity / Unrest


Volcano index photo  Aira  | Kyushu (Japan)  | 31.593°N, 130.657°E  | Elevation 1117 m

JMA reported that small explosions occasionally occurred at Minamidake Crater at Aira Caldera’s Sakurajima during 14-21 September. On 16 and 18 September an explosion from Showa Crater ejected tephra as far as 800 m, and incandescence from the crater was occasionally visible at night. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a 5-level scale).

Source: Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA)



Volcano index photo  Asosan  | Kyushu (Japan)  | 32.884°N, 131.104°E  | Elevation 1592 m

On 18 September JMA reported that an eruption from Asosan’s Nakadake Crater continued; ash plumes rose 900 m that same day. During an overflight scientists observed that pyroclastic-flow deposits from the 14 September explosion extended down the SE flank as far as 3 km; scientists from Kumamoto University estimated that about [40,000 tons] of ash were ejected that day. On 21 September an off-white plume rose 900 m. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-5).

Source: Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA)



Volcano index photo  Cotopaxi  | Ecuador  | 0.677°S, 78.436°W  | Elevation 5911 m

On 17 September IG reported that during the previous two weeks activity at Cotopaxi had declined, characterized by a decrease in tremor and less intense gas-and-ash emissions. On 10 September, however, the number of volcano-tectonic events increased. They were mostly located 9-12 km below the summit, although some were as shallow as 4 km. During 19-22 September gas emissions with low ash content rose as high as 1.5 km above the crater and drifted W.

Source: Instituto Geofísico-Escuela Politécnica Nacional (IG)



Volcano index photo  Mauna Loa  | Hawaiian Islands (USA)  | 19.475°N, 155.608°W  | Elevation 4170 m

On 18 September HVO reported that for at least the previous year the seismic network at Mauna Loa detected elevated seismicity beneath the summit, upper Southwest Rift Zone, and W flank; the rate of these shallow earthquakes varied but overall had remained above the long-term average. The earthquakes locations were similar to those preceding recent eruptions in 1975 and 1984, although the magnitudes were comparatively low. In addition, ground deformation consistent with recharge of the volcano’s shallow magma storage system was also detected during the previous year. The rate and pattern of the deformation was similar to that measured during a period of inflation 2005, unrest that did not lead to an eruption. However, since the observations indicated that Mauna Loa is no longer at background levels, HVO raised the Aviation Color Code to Yellow and the Volcano Alert Level to Advisory.

Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)



Volcano index photo  Nevado del Ruiz  | Colombia  | 4.892°N, 75.324°W  | Elevation 5279 m

Servicio Geológico Colombiano’s (SGC) Observatorio Vulcanológico y Sismológico de Manizales reported that during 15-21 September seismicity at Nevado del Ruiz was characterized by long-period earthquakes and short-duration volcanic tremor associated with gas-and-ash emissions. Increases in seismicity were detected on 15 and 20 September, SW and N of Arenas Crater, respectively; the earthquakes were located at depths between 2.2 and 6.5 km, and were a maximum local M 2. Water-vapor-and-gas plumes rose 2.5 km above the crater and drifted mainly NW, and were sometimes tinged gray due to the presence of ash. Ashfall was reported in Manizales (30 km NW) and Pereira (40 km WSW). The Alert Level remained at III (Yellow; "changes in the behavior of volcanic activity").

Source: Servicio Geológico Colombiano (SGC)



Volcano index photo  Piton de la Fournaise  | Reunion Island (France)  | 21.244°S, 55.708°E  | Elevation 2632 m

On 14 September OVPDLF reported that during the previous several days seismicity, deformation, and gas emissions at Piton de la Fournaise intensified. Tremor levels fluctuated. The two lava lakes separated by a partition in a single vent remained active. Lava flows emerged from and were active beyond a 50-100 m lava tube; the largest lava flows were not longer than 1.5 km. By 17 September seismic activity, deformation, and gas emissions had stabilized, and only one lava lake was active.

Source: Observatoire Volcanologique du Piton de la Fournaise (OVPF)



Ongoing Activity


Volcano index photo  Batu Tara  | Komba Island (Indonesia)  | 7.791°S, 123.585°E  | Elevation 633 m

Based on a pilot observation, the Darwin VAAC reported that on 15 September an ash plume from Batu Tara drifted 185 km NW at an altitude of 1.5 km (5,000 ft) a.s.l.

Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Cleveland  | Chuginadak Island (USA)  | 52.825°N, 169.944°W  | Elevation 1730 m

AVO reported that during 16-22 September low-level unrest at Cleveland continued. Weakly elevated surface temperatures were detected in one satellite image during 20-21 September. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Watch.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)



Volcano index photo  Colima  | Mexico  | 19.514°N, 103.62°W  | Elevation 3850 m

On 18 September the Washington VAAC reported that the webcam at Colima recorded a short-duration ash plume that rose to an altitude of 5.2 km (17,000 ft) a.s.l. Based on satellite images, the Mexico City MWO, and seismic data, the VAAC noted that during 20-21 September ash plumes rose to altitudes of 5.5-6.7 km (18,000-22,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted km W and WSW.

Source: Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Dukono  | Halmahera (Indonesia)  | 1.693°N, 127.894°E  | Elevation 1229 m

Based on analyses of satellite imagery and wind data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 16-21 September ash plumes from Dukono rose to altitudes of 2.1-2.7 km (7,000-9,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted 65-85 km NE, E, and SE.

Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Karangetang  | Siau Island (Indonesia)  | 2.781°N, 125.407°E  | Elevation 1797 m

Based on observations conducted at the Karangetang Volcano Observation Post in the village of Salili, PVMBG reported during 9-16 September that lava fountains rose as high as 250 m and lava flows traveled as far as 2.5 km. Incandescent avalanches from the fronts of 150-m-long lava flows traveled as far as 2.5 km E down the Batuawang and Kahetang drainages. Seismicity was dominated by multi-phase earthquakes and signals characteristic of avalanches, with rare volcanic earthquakes. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-4); visitors and residents were warned not to approach Karangetang within a 4-km radius.

Based on analyses of satellite imagery and wind data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 16-17 September ash plumes rose to altitudes of 2.4-3 km (6,000-10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted 30-85 km NE, E, and ESE.

Sources: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM), Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Karymsky  | Eastern Kamchatka (Russia)  | 54.049°N, 159.443°E  | Elevation 1513 m

KVERT reported that moderate explosive activity at Karymsky continued during 11-18 September. Satellite images detected a thermal anomaly on the volcano during 14-18 September. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange.

Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)



Volcano index photo  Kilauea  | Hawaiian Islands (USA)  | 19.421°N, 155.287°W  | Elevation 1222 m

HVO reported that seismicity and deformation at Kilauea was at normal levels during 16-22 September. The lava lake rose and fell, circulated, and occasionally spattered in the Overlook vent. Webcams recorded multiple incandescent outgassing vents within Pu'u 'O'o. The June 27th NE-trending lava flow continued to be active within 4-8 km NE of Pu'u 'O'o Crater; smoke plumes from burning vegetation marked the most distal flows.

Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)



Volcano index photo  Pacaya  | Guatemala  | 14.382°N, 90.601°W  | Elevation 2569 m

INSIVUMEH reported that during 17-19 September white-and-blue fumarolic plumes rose from Pacaya's Mackenney cone and drifted W and S. Tremor was detected and incandescence from the crater was visible at night. Weak explosions on 22 September generated an ash plume that rose 900 m above the crater and drifted W. Tremor continued to be recorded.

Source: Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia, e Hidrologia (INSIVUMEH)



Volcano index photo  Popocatepetl  | Mexico  | 19.023°N, 98.622°W  | Elevation 5393 m

CENAPRED reported that during 16-22 September the seismic network at Popocatépetl recorded 15-89 daily emissions consisting of water vapor, gas, and sometimes ash; cloud cover often prevented visual observations. Variable nighttime or morning crater incandescence was observed most days, and 1-13 daily explosions were registered. The Alert Level remained at Yellow, Phase Two.

Source: Centro Nacional de Prevencion de Desastres (CENAPRED)



Volcano index photo  Sheveluch  | Central Kamchatka (Russia)  | 56.653°N, 161.36°E  | Elevation 3283 m

KVERT reported that during 11-18 September lava-dome extrusion onto Sheveluch’s N flank was accompanied by fumarolic activity, dome incandescence, and hot avalanches. Satellite images detected a daily thermal anomaly over the dome. Based on video and satellite data, re-suspended ash from strong winds drifted 185 km SE during 15-16 September. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange.

Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)



Volcano index photo  Shishaldin  | Fox Islands (USA)  | 54.756°N, 163.97°W  | Elevation 2857 m

AVO reported that seismicity at Shishaldin was only slightly above background levels during 16-22 September. No activity was observed in satellite or webcam images during clear periods. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Watch.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)



Volcano index photo  Sinabung  | Indonesia  | 3.17°N, 98.392°E  | Elevation 2460 m

PVMBG reported that during 8-14 September foggy weather sometimes prevented visual observations of Sinabung and the growing lava dome in the summit crater. Lava flows on the flanks were incandescent as far as 2 km ESE. As many as six pyroclastic flows per day were detected, traveling as far as 3.5 km ESE and SE. Ash plumes rose as high as 2.5 km. Seismicity consisted of avalanche signals, low-frequency and hybrid events, tremor, tectonic events, and volcanic earthquakes. Seismicity fluctuated, although it had declined compared to the previous week. Deformation measurements showed deflation. The Alert Level remained at 4 (on a scale of 1-4), indicating that people within 7 km of the volcano on the SSE sector, and within 6 km in the ESE sector, should evacuate. Based on information from PVMBG, the Darwin VAAC reported that on 18 September an ash plume from a pyroclastic flow rose to an altitude of 3.3 km (11,000 ft) a.s.l. On 21 September an ash plume rose to an altitude of 4.3 km (14,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SW. Later that day a pilot observed an ash plume drifting 45 km SW at an altitude of 5.8 km (19,000 ft) a.s.l.

Source: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM)



Volcano index photo  Soufriere Hills  | Montserrat  | 16.72°N, 62.18°W  | Elevation 915 m

Based on satellite image analyses and wind data, the Washington VAAC reported that on 19 September possible re-suspended ash from Soufrière Hills drifted WNW at an altitude of 1 km (3,000 ft) a.s.l.

Source: Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Ubinas  | Peru  | 16.355°S, 70.903°W  | Elevation 5672 m

Instituto Geofísico del Perú (IGP) Observatorio Volcanológico del Sur (OVS) reported that long-period and volcano-tectonic events were at low levels at Ubinas during 15-21 September. Sporadic steam-and-gas plumes rose 600 m. Seismicity (hybrid and long-period events) increased during 20-21 September. An explosion on 21 September at 0914 produced ash plumes that rose 1.7 km and drifted S; ash emission continued until about 0800 the next day. Ashfall was reported in Querapi (4.5 km SE), Ubinas (6.5 km SSE), Tonohaya (7 km SSE), Anascapa (11 km SE), Sacohaya, and San Miguel (10 km SE).

Source: Instituto Geofísico del Perú (IGP)



Weekly Reports Archive

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Chiles-Cerro Negro Katla Pacaya Tara, Batu
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 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

Criteria

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.


Disclaimers

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.

5. USGS Disclaimer Statement for this Website:

Information presented on this website is considered public information and may be distributed or copied. Use of appropriate byline/photo/image credit is requested. We strongly recommend that USGS data be acquired directly from a USGS server and not through other sources that may change the data in some way. While USGS makes every effort to provide accurate and complete information, various data such as names, telephone numbers, etc. may change prior to updating. USGS welcomes suggestions on how to improve our home page and correct errors. USGS provides no warranty, expressed or implied, as to the accuracy, reliability or completeness of furnished data.

Some of the documents on this server may contain live references (or pointers) to information created and maintained by other organizations. Please note that USGS does not control and cannot guarantee the relevance, timeliness, or accuracy of these outside materials.

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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.

 Acronyms and Abbreviations

a.s.l. - above sea level

AVO - Alaska Volcano Observatory

AVHRR - Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer

CENAPRED - Centro Nacionale de Prevencion de Desastres (México)

CONRED - Coordinadora Nacional para la Reducción de Desastres

COSPEC - Correlation Spectrometer

CVGHM (formerly VSI) - Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation

CVO - Cascades Volcano Observatory (USGS)

GMS - Geostationary Meteorological Satellite

GOES - Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite

GVO - Goma Volcano Observatory

GVP - Global Volcanism Program (Smithsonian Institution)

HVO - Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (USGS)

ICE - Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (Costa Rica)

IG - Instituto Geofísico (Ecuador)

IGNS - Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences (New Zealand) - now GNS Science

INETER - Instituto Nicaragüense de Estudios Territoriales (Nicaragua)

INGEMMET - Instituto Geológical Minero y Metalúrgico (Peru)

INGEOMINAS - Instituto Colombiano de Geología y Minería (Colombia)

INGV-CT - Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - Sezione di Catania (Italy)

INSIVUMEH - Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia e Hidrologia (Guatemala)

IRD - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (France)

JMA - Japanese Meteorological Agency

KEMSD - Kamchatkan Experimental and Methodical Seismilogical Department

KVERT - Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team

M - magnitude

METEOSAT - Meteorological Satellite

MEVO - Mount Erebus Volcano Observatory

MODIS - Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer

MVO - Montserrat Volcano Observatory

MWO - Meteorological Watch Office

NEIC - National Earthquake Information Center

NIED - National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention (Japan)

NOAA - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

NOTAM - Notice to Airmen

OVDAS - Observatorio Volcanologico de los Andes del Sur (Chile)

OFDA - Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance

ONEMI - Oficina Nacional de Emergencia - Ministerio del Interior (Chile)

OVPDLF - Observatoire Volcanologique du Piton de la Fournaise (France)

OVSICORI-UNA - Observatorio Vulcanologico y Sismologico de Costa Rica, Universidad Nacional (Costa Rica)

PHIVOLCS - Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Philippines)

RSAM - Real-time Seismic Amplitude Measurement

RVO - Rabaul Volcano Observatory

SERNAGEOMIN - Servicio Nacional de Geologia y Mineria (Chile)

SIGMET - Significant Meteorological Information

SNET - Servicio Nacional de Estudios Territoriales (El Salvador)

SVERT - Sakhalin Volcanic Eruption Response Team (Russia)

USAID - US Agency for International Development

USGS - United States Geological Survey

UTC - Coordinated Universal Time

VAAC - Volcanic Ash Advisory Center

VAFTAD - Volcanic Ash Forecast Transport And Dispersion

VDAP - Volcano Disaster Assistance Program (USGS)

VHP - Volcano Hazards Program (USGS)

VRC - Volcano Research Center (Japan)