Report on Reventador (Ecuador) — 13 April-19 April 2016
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 13 April-19 April 2016
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2016. Report on Reventador (Ecuador). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 13 April-19 April 2016. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
0.077°S, 77.656°W; summit elev. 3562 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
During 13-19 April IG reported a high level of seismic activity including explosions, volcano-tectonic events, long-period earthquakes, harmonic tremor, and signals indicating emissions at Reventador; cloud cover often prevented visual observations. Crater incandescence was observed at night during 12-13 April. On 13 April a pyroclastic flows traveled 1 km down the E flank, and an ash-and-gas plume rose 2 km. On 18 April a steam-and-ash plume rose 2 km and drifted SW. Crater incandescence during 18-19 April was accompanied by blocks rolling1.5 km down the S and SW flanks. Emissions rose 800 m and drifted NE.
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.