Bam

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  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 3.613°S
  • 144.818°E

  • 685 m
    2247 ft

  • 251010
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

  • Volcano
    Number

Most Recent Bulletin Report: March 1981 (SEAN 06:03)


Discolored water

During aerial inspections 6 and 19 March, a 1-km-long zone of orange sea discoloration was noted at the S shore of Bam Island.

Information Contacts: Acting Senior Volcanologist, RVO.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Weekly Reports available for Bam.

Index of Bulletin Reports


Reports are organized chronologically and indexed below by Month/Year (Publication Volume:Number), and include a one-line summary. Click on the index link or scroll down to read the reports.

03/1981 (SEAN 06:03) Discolored water




Bulletin Reports

All information contained in these reports is preliminary and subject to change.


03/1981 (SEAN 06:03) Discolored water

During aerial inspections 6 and 19 March, a 1-km-long zone of orange sea discoloration was noted at the S shore of Bam Island.

Information Contacts: Acting Senior Volcanologist, RVO.

The small 2.4 x 1.6 km island of Bam is the summit of a mostly submerged volcano that is one of the more active in Papua New Guinea. Bam is the SE-most of the Schouten Islands, and lies off the coast of New Guinea, about 40 km NNE of the mouth of the Sepik River. A steep-walled summit crater that is 300 m wide and 180 m deep is the source of Bam's recent eruptions, which have kept the upper half of the cone sparsely vegetated. A NE-trending landslide scarp extends across the upper part of the andesitic volcano from the SW coast, and a large submarine debris-avalanche deposits lies to the south and SW. The younger summit cone partially buries the eastern side of the collapse scarp. A recent lava platform on the north flank supports the small island's only villages. Historical eruptions, recorded since 1872, have been restricted to small-to-moderate explosive activity from the summit crater.

Summary of Holocene eruption dates and Volcanic Explosivity Indices (VEI).

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
1960 Apr 28 1960 Jul 6 Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1959 Apr 2 1959 Oct 31 Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1958 Sep 5 1958 Sep 10 Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1958 Mar 11 ± 10 days 1958 Apr 19 (?) Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1957 Oct 26 1957 Oct 26 Confirmed 1 Historical Observations
1954 Aug 3 1957 Jan 2 Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1947 Mar 13 ± 75 days Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
[ 1946 Dec 1 ± 30 days ] [ Unknown ] Discredited    
1944 Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
[ 1941 ] [ 1942 ] Discredited    
[ 1936 Jul ] [ 1939 Apr ] Uncertain    
1924 Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
[ 1920 ± 2 years ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    
1913 Unknown Confirmed   Historical Observations
1909 Apr 19 1909 Sep 13 Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1908 Jul 12 Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1907 Nov Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
[ 1897 ] [ 1898 ] Uncertain    
[ 1888 ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    
[ 1885 May 20 ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    
[ 1884 ] [ Unknown ] Discredited    
[ 1883 Mar ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    
1877 Nov 13 Unknown Confirmed 3 Historical Observations
1874 May 20 Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1872 ± 4 years Unknown Confirmed 3 Historical Observations
[ 1868 ] [ Unknown ] Discredited    
[ 1700 Apr ] [ Unknown ] Discredited    
[ 1616 ] [ Unknown ] Discredited    

This compilation of synonyms and subsidiary features may not be comprehensive. Features are organized into four major categories: Cones, Craters, Domes, and Thermal Features. Synonyms of features appear indented below the primary name. In some cases additional feature type, elevation, or location details are provided.


Synonyms

Lesson Island | Biam | Biem
The small 2.4 x 1.6 km island of Bam, seen here from the south, is the summit of a mostly submerged volcano that is one of the more active in Papua New Guinea. A steep-walled summit crater that is 300-m wide and 180-m deep is the source of Bam's recent eruptions, which have kept the upper half of the cone sparsely vegetated . A younger cone (center horizon) formed inside a SE-facing landslide scarp. Historical eruptions, recorded since 1872, involved small-to-moderate explosive activity from the summit crater.

Photo by Wally Johnson, 1970 (Australia Bureau of Mineral Resources).
The small island with the irregular shoreline at the upper left is Blup Blup. This 3.5-km-wide forested island contains lava flows with well-defined flow fronts, and a weak thermal area is located on the west coast. No historical eruptions have occurred, but the volcano may have been active during the Holocene. Blup Blup is part of the Schouten Islands, along with Kadovar volcano (the small circular island to the south, above the prominent sediment plume at the lower left) and Bam volcano (right).

NASA Space Shuttle image STS106-719-49, 2000 (http://eol.jsc.nasa.gov/).

The following references have all been used during the compilation of data for this volcano, it is not a comprehensive bibliography. Discussion of another volcano or eruption (sometimes far from the one that is the subject of the manuscript) may produce a citation that is not at all apparent from the title.

Cooke R J S, Johnson R W, 1978. Volcanoes and volcanology in Papua New Guinea. Geol Surv Papua New Guinea Rpt, 78/2: 1-46.

Cooke R J S, Johnson R W, 1981. Bam volcano: morphology, geology, and reported eruptive history. Geol Surv Papua New Guinea Mem, 10: 13-22.

Fisher N H, 1957. Melanesia. Catalog of Active Volcanoes of the World and Solfatara Fields, Rome: IAVCEI, 5: 1-105.

Hantke G, 1959. Ubersicht uber die Vulkanische Tatigkeit 1954-1956. Bull Volc, 20: 3-36.

Johnson R W, 1987. Large-scale volcanic cone collapse: the 1888 slope failure of Ritter volcano, and other examples from Papua New Guinea. Bull Volc, 49: 669-679.

Johnson R W, Taylor G A M, Davies R A, 1972. Geology and petrology of Quaternary volcanic islands off the north coast of New Guinea. Aust Bur Min Resour Geol Geophys Rec, 1972/21: 1-127.

Lowenstein P L, 1982. Problems of volcanic hazards in Papua New Guinea. Geol Surv Papua New Guinea Rpt, 82/7: 1-62.

Silver E, Day S, Ward S, Hoffmann G, Llanes P, Driscoll N, Appelgate B, Saunders S, 2009. Volcano collapse and tsunami generation in the Bismarck Volcanic Arc, Papua New Guinea. J Volc Geotherm Res, 186: 210-222.

Volcano Types

Stratovolcano

Tectonic Setting

Subduction zone
Continental crust (> 25 km)

Rock Types

Major
Andesite / Basaltic Andesite

Population

Within 5 km
Within 10 km
Within 30 km
Within 100 km
192
192
462
103,203

Affiliated Databases

Large Eruptions of Bam Information about large Quaternary eruptions (VEI >= 4) is cataloged in the Large Magnitude Explosive Volcanic Eruptions (LaMEVE) database of the Volcano Global Risk Identification and Analysis Project (VOGRIPA).
WOVOdat WOVOdat is a database of volcanic unrest; instrumentally and visually recorded changes in seismicity, ground deformation, gas emission, and other parameters from their normal baselines. It is sponsored by the World Organization of Volcano Observatories (WOVO) and presently hosted at the Earth Observatory of Singapore.
EarthChem EarthChem develops and maintains databases, software, and services that support the preservation, discovery, access and analysis of geochemical data, and facilitate their integration with the broad array of other available earth science parameters. EarthChem is operated by a joint team of disciplinary scientists, data scientists, data managers and information technology developers who are part of the NSF-funded data facility Integrated Earth Data Applications (IEDA). IEDA is a collaborative effort of EarthChem and the Marine Geoscience Data System (MGDS).
Smithsonian Collections Search the Smithsonian's NMNH Department of Mineral Sciences collections database. Go to the "Search Rocks and Ores" tab and use the Volcano Name drop-down to find samples.