Report on Reventador (Ecuador) — 3 September-9 September 2014
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 3 September-9 September 2014
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2014. Report on Reventador (Ecuador). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 3 September-9 September 2014. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
0.077°S, 77.656°W; summit elev. 3562 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
During 3-9 September IG reported moderate activity including explosions, long-period earthquakes, harmonic tremor, and tremor at Reventador. While cloud cover frequently limited observations, on 5-8 September steam emissions were observed with small quantities of ash. In the morning of 5 September an explosion generated a plume and ejected blocks from the crater that fell ~500 m below the summit on the W flank. A thermal camera detected an explosion on the following day that also included ballistics. Rumbling sounds were heard in the morning of 7 September, and that evening a 1 km plume was observed. The following morning a vapor plume persisted from the summit, and in the afternoon it contained a small amount of ash.
The MODIS sensor onboard the Terra satellite detected thermal anomalies from the region of Reventador’s summit during 4-6 September.
Geologic Background. Reventador is the most frequently active of a chain of Ecuadorian volcanoes in the Cordillera Real, well east of the principal volcanic axis. The forested, dominantly andesitic Volcán El Reventador stratovolcano rises to 3562 m above the jungles of the western Amazon basin. A 4-km-wide caldera widely breached to the east was formed by edifice collapse and is partially filled by a young, unvegetated stratovolcano that rises about 1300 m above the caldera floor to a height comparable to the caldera rim. It has been the source of numerous lava flows as well as explosive eruptions that were visible from Quito in historical time. Frequent lahars in this region of heavy rainfall have constructed a debris plain on the eastern floor of the caldera. The largest historical eruption took place in 2002, producing a 17-km-high eruption column, pyroclastic flows that traveled up to 8 km, and lava flows from summit and flank vents.