Report on Sabancaya (Peru) — 6 March-12 March 2019
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 6 March-12 March 2019
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2019. Report on Sabancaya (Peru). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 6 March-12 March 2019. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
15.787°S, 71.857°W; summit elev. 5960 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
Instituto Geofísico del Perú (IGP) and Instituto Geológico Minero y Metalúrgico (INGEMMET) reported that an average of 15 explosions per day occurred at Sabancaya during 4-10 March. Long-period seismic events were recorded, and hybrid earthquakes were infrequent and of low magnitude. Gas-and-ash plumes rose as high as 2.8 km above the crater rim and drifted 20 km SW, W, and NW. MIROVA detected four thermal anomalies, and on 3 March the sulfur-dioxide gas flux was high at 3,360 tons per day. The report noted that the public should not approach the crater within a 12-km radius.
Geologic Background. Sabancaya, located in the saddle NE of Ampato and SE of Hualca Hualca volcanoes, is the youngest of these volcanic centers and the only one to have erupted in historical time. The oldest of the three, Nevado Hualca Hualca, is of probable late-Pliocene to early Pleistocene age. The name Sabancaya (meaning "tongue of fire" in the Quechua language) first appeared in records in 1595 CE, suggesting activity prior to that date. Holocene activity has consisted of Plinian eruptions followed by emission of voluminous andesitic and dacitic lava flows, which form an extensive apron around the volcano on all sides but the south. Records of historical eruptions date back to 1750.