Report on Sheveluch (Russia) — 14 December-20 December 2011
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 14 December-20 December 2011
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2011. Report on Sheveluch (Russia). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 14 December-20 December 2011. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
56.653°N, 161.36°E; summit elev. 3283 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
KVERT reported that moderate seismic activity was detected at Shiveluch during 9-16 December. Satellite imagery showed a daily thermal anomaly over the lava dome. Ground-based observers noted that a viscous lava flow continued to effuse in the crater formed during a 2010 eruption. Moderate fumarolic activity at the lava dome was observed during 10-11 and 13-15 December; clouds prevented observations on the other days of the week. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange.
Based on information from Yelizovo Airport (UHPP) and satellite images, the Tokyo VAAC reported that on 19 December an eruption produced a plume that rose to an altitude of 6.1 km (20,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted E. On 20 December an ash plume drifted SE at an altitude of 4.3 km (14,000 ft) a.s.l.
Geologic Background. The high, isolated massif of Sheveluch volcano (also spelled Shiveluch) rises above the lowlands NNE of the Kliuchevskaya volcano group. The 1300 km3 volcano is one of Kamchatka's largest and most active volcanic structures. The summit of roughly 65,000-year-old Stary Shiveluch is truncated by a broad 9-km-wide late-Pleistocene caldera breached to the south. Many lava domes dot its outer flanks. The Molodoy Shiveluch lava dome complex was constructed during the Holocene within the large horseshoe-shaped caldera; Holocene lava dome extrusion also took place on the flanks of Stary Shiveluch. At least 60 large eruptions have occurred during the Holocene, making it the most vigorous andesitic volcano of the Kuril-Kamchatka arc. Widespread tephra layers from these eruptions have provided valuable time markers for dating volcanic events in Kamchatka. Frequent collapses of dome complexes, most recently in 1964, have produced debris avalanches whose deposits cover much of the floor of the breached caldera.