Report on Kirishimayama (Japan) — 14 March-20 March 2018
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 14 March-20 March 2018
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2018. Report on Kirishimayama (Japan). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 14 March-20 March 2018. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
31.934°N, 130.862°E; summit elev. 1700 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
JMA reported that the eruption at Shinmoedake (Shinmoe peak), a stratovolcano of the Kirishimayama volcano group, continued during 13-19 March. Lava effusion possibly stopped on 9 March, though the lava flow on the NW flank continued to advance. An explosion at 1413 on 15 March generated a gray-white plume that rose 2.1 km above the crater and ejected material 1 km from the crater. A high number of volcanic earthquakes continued to be recorded, in addition to many low-frequency earthquakes with shallow hypocenters. Volcanic tremor was occasionally recorded. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-5).
Geologic Background. Kirishimayama is a large group of more than 20 Quaternary volcanoes located north of Kagoshima Bay. The late-Pleistocene to Holocene dominantly andesitic group consists of stratovolcanoes, pyroclastic cones, maars, and underlying shield volcanoes located over an area of 20 x 30 km. The larger stratovolcanoes are scattered throughout the field, with the centrally located Karakunidake being the highest. Onamiike and Miike, the two largest maars, are located SW of Karakunidake and at its far eastern end, respectively. Holocene eruptions have been concentrated along an E-W line of vents from Miike to Ohachi, and at Shinmoedake to the NE. Frequent small-to-moderate explosive eruptions have been recorded since the 8th century.