Report on Poas (Costa Rica) — July 1981

Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, vol. 6, no. 7 (July 1981)
Managing Editor: Lindsay McClelland.

Poas (Costa Rica) Medium-to-high temperature gases collected

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 1981. Report on Poas (Costa Rica). In: McClelland, L (ed.), Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, 6:7. Smithsonian Institution. http://dx.doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.SEAN198107-345040.

Volcano Profile |  Complete Bulletin |  Download PDF [future] |  Export Citation [future]


Poas

Costa Rica

10.2°N, 84.233°W; summit elev. 2708 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)


Between 14 June and 11 July, personnel from PIRPSEV, CNRS, and the volcano observation section of IPG sampled and analyzed medium-to-high temperature gases from Poás (table 1). Maximum gas temperatures measured were 940°C.

Table 1. Analytical means of 28 gas samples from Poás (dry, HCl excluded).

[Skip text table]
    Gas   Mean Amount

    SO2   55.79%
    CO2   26.06%
    H2    17.90%
    H2S    0.52%
    N2     1.98% in air
    CO     0.24%
    CH4   84.3 ppm
    He    52   ppm
    COS   25.8 ppm

Geologic Background. The broad, well-vegetated edifice of Poás, one of the most active volcanoes of Costa Rica, contains three craters along a N-S line. The frequently visited multi-hued summit crater lakes of the basaltic-to-dacitic volcano, which is one of Costa Rica's most prominent natural landmarks, are easily accessible by vehicle from the nearby capital city of San José. A N-S-trending fissure cutting the 2708-m-high complex stratovolcano extends to the lower northern flank, where it has produced the Congo stratovolcano and several lake-filled maars. The southernmost of the two summit crater lakes, Botos, is cold and clear and last erupted about 7500 years ago. The more prominent geothermally heated northern lake, Laguna Caliente, is one of the world's most acidic natural lakes, with a pH of near zero. It has been the site of frequent phreatic and phreatomagmatic eruptions since the first historical eruption was reported in 1828. Eruptions often include geyser-like ejections of crater-lake water.

Information Contacts: H. Delorme, Univ. de Paris; J.L. Cheminée, IPG, Paris.