Report on Mayon (Philippines) — 20 September-26 September 2006
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 20 September-26 September 2006
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2006. Report on Mayon (Philippines). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 20 September-26 September 2006. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
13.257°N, 123.685°E; summit elev. 2462 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
Surface activity at Mayon consisted of incandescent lava fragments rolling down the slopes and glow coming from the summit crater. Moderate white steam emissions continued from the summit. The number of daily volcanic earthquakes was low during 20-24 September, with 1-3 events per day. On the 25th there were 14 earthquakes recorded. There were also 114 tremor episodes that day, also a high for the week ending on 26 September. Sulfur dioxide flux remained above normal, between 1,200 and 2,200 metric tons/day.
Geologic Background. Beautifully symmetrical Mayon, which rises above the Albay Gulf NW of Legazpi City, is the Philippines' most active volcano. The structurally simple edifice has steep upper slopes averaging 35-40 degrees that are capped by a small summit crater. Historical eruptions date back to 1616 and range from Strombolian to basaltic Plinian, with cyclical activity beginning with basaltic eruptions, followed by longer term andesitic lava flows. Eruptions occur predominately from the central conduit and have also produced lava flows that travel far down the flanks. Pyroclastic flows and mudflows have commonly swept down many of the approximately 40 ravines that radiate from the summit and have often devastated populated lowland areas. A violent eruption in 1814 killed more than 1,200 people and devastated several towns.