Report on Ulawun (Papua New Guinea) — 5 December-11 December 2012

Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 5 December-11 December 2012
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2012. Report on Ulawun (Papua New Guinea). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 5 December-11 December 2012. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Volcano Profile |  Weekly Report (5 December-11 December 2012)


Papua New Guinea

5.05°S, 151.33°E; summit elev. 2334 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

RVO reported that dense gray-brown ash plumes continued to rise 200 m from Ulawun during 1-7 December. Ashfall was reported on the NW flanks, in Ubili (10 km NW) and Ulamona (10 km NW). A small landslide scar appeared near the N valley flank vent, reportedly caused by movement of a large boulder and loose material, triggered by a M 6.1 earthquake that occurred near Pomio (55 km SSE) on 19 November.

Geologic Background. The symmetrical basaltic-to-andesitic Ulawun stratovolcano is the highest volcano of the Bismarck arc, and one of Papua New Guinea's most frequently active. The volcano, also known as the Father, rises above the north coast of the island of New Britain across a low saddle NE of Bamus volcano, the South Son. The upper 1000 m is unvegetated. A prominent E-W escarpment on the south may be the result of large-scale slumping. Satellitic cones occupy the NW and E flanks. A steep-walled valley cuts the NW side, and a flank lava-flow complex lies to the south of this valley. Historical eruptions date back to the beginning of the 18th century. Twentieth-century eruptions were mildly explosive until 1967, but after 1970 several larger eruptions produced lava flows and basaltic pyroclastic flows, greatly modifying the summit crater.

Source: Rabaul Volcano Observatory (RVO)