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Report on Semisopochnoi (United States) — 31 October-6 November 2018

Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 31 October-6 November 2018
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2018. Report on Semisopochnoi (United States). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 31 October-6 November 2018. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Volcano Profile |  Weekly Report (31 October-6 November 2018)


Semisopochnoi

United States

51.93°N, 179.58°E; summit elev. 1221 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)


AVO reported that two small explosions at Semisopochnoi were detected in seismic and infrasound data on 31 October. Intermittent seismic tremor was recorded on 1 November but later that day the satellite link that transmits seismic data failed. Weather clouds obscured views of the volcano during 31 October-4 November. Nothing was observed in satellite data during 5-6 November. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-color scale) and Volcano Alert Level remained at Watch (the second highest level on a four-level scale).

Geologic Background. Semisopochnoi, the largest subaerial volcano of the western Aleutians, is 20 km wide at sea level and contains an 8-km-wide caldera. It formed as a result of collapse of a low-angle, dominantly basaltic volcano following the eruption of a large volume of dacitic pumice. The high point of the island is 1221-m-high Anvil Peak, a double-peaked late-Pleistocene cone that forms much of the island's northern part. The three-peaked 774-m-high Mount Cerberus volcano was constructed during the Holocene within the caldera. Each of the peaks contains a summit crater; lava flows on the northern flank of Cerberus appear younger than those on the southern side. Other post-caldera volcanoes include the symmetrical 855-m-high Sugarloaf Peak SSE of the caldera and Lakeshore Cone, a small cinder cone at the edge of Fenner Lake in the NE part of the caldera. Most documented historical eruptions have originated from Cerberus, although Coats (1950) considered that both Sugarloaf and Lakeshore Cone within the caldera could have been active during historical time.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)