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  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 4.12°S
  • 152.2°E

  • 200 m
    656 ft

  • 252150
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit

  • Volcano

The Global Volcanism Program has no activity reports for Tavui.

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

The Global Volcanism Program has no Bulletin Reports available for Tavui.

Basic Data

Volcano Number

Last Known Eruption



5150 BCE

200 m / 656 ft


Volcano Types


Rock Types

Basalt / Picro-Basalt

Tectonic Setting

Subduction zone
Continental crust (> 25 km)


Within 5 km
Within 10 km
Within 30 km
Within 100 km

Geological Summary

The spectacular mostly submarine Tavui caldera lies off the NE tip of the Gazelle Peninsula north of Rabaul caldera. The caldera was first discovered during a bathymetric cruise in 1985. The SW wall of the roughly 10 x 12 km wide caldera cuts the NE end of the peninsula and extends from Tavui Point at the northern tip of the peninsula SE to Laweo Point. The 7100-year-old Raluan Ignimbrite, initially thought to have originated from Rabaul, is now thought to have been produced by an eruption of Tavui. A basaltic scoria layer immediately underlies the rhyolitic ignimbrite, and the introduction of basaltic magma was considered to have triggered the rhyolitic eruption. The lack of a major low-velocity region detectable beneath the caldera during a seismic tomography survey suggests that it is not currently active.


The following references have all been used during the compilation of data for this volcano, it is not a comprehensive bibliography.

Finlayson D M, Gudmundsson O, Itikarai I, Nishimura Y, Shimamura H, 2003. Rabaul volcano, Papua New Guinea: seismic tomographic imaging of an active caldera. J Volc Geotherm Res, 124: 153-171.

Nairn I A, McKee C O, Talai B, Wood C P, 1995. Geology and eruptive history of the Rabaul Caldera area, Papua New Guinea. J Volc Geotherm Res, 69: 255-284.

Tiffin D L, Taylor B D, Tufar W, Itikarai I, 1990. A Seabeam and Sampling Survey of Newly Discovered Tavui Caldera near Rabaul, Papua New Guinea. South Pacific Applied Geoscience Comm (SOPAC) Cruise Rpt 132, 17 p.

Wood C P, Nairn I A, McKee C O, Talai B, 1995. Petrology of the Rabaul Caldera area, Papua New Guinea. J Volc Geotherm Res, 69: 285-302.

Eruptive History

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

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
5150 BCE ± 2000 years Unknown Confirmed 5 Thermoluminescence Raluan Ignimbrite

The Global Volcanism Program has no synonyms or subfeatures listed for Tavui.

Photo Gallery

The mostly submarine Tavui caldera at the NE end of New Britain lies off the tip of the Gazelle Peninsula. The SW wall of the roughly 10 x 12 km wide caldera, its margins crudely shown on this image, cuts the NE tip of the peninsula. Tavui caldera, much less known than its prominent neighbor to the south, Rabaul caldera, was first discovered during a bathymetric cruise in 1985. Light ash-covered areas from the 1994 Rabaul eruption can be seen at the western and NE margins of Rabaul caldera in this 1999 NASA Space Shuttle image.

NASA Space Shuttle image STS103-733-52, 1999 (http://eol.jsc.nasa.gov/).

Smithsonian Sample Collections Database

There are no samples for Tavui in the Smithsonian's NMNH Department of Mineral Sciences Rock and Ore collection.

Affiliated Sites

Large Eruptions of Tavui 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).
MODVOLC - HIGP MODIS Thermal Alert System Using infrared satellite Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data, scientists at the Hawai'i Institute of Geophysics and Planetology, University of Hawai'i, developed an automated system called MODVOLC to map thermal hot-spots in near real time. For each MODIS image, the algorithm automatically scans each 1 km pixel within it to check for high-temperature hot-spots. When one is found the date, time, location, and intensity are recorded. MODIS looks at every square km of the Earth every 48 hours, once during the day and once during the night, and the presence of two MODIS sensors in space allows at least four hot-spot observations every two days. Each day updated global maps are compiled to display the locations of all hot spots detected in the previous 24 hours. There is a drop-down list with volcano names which allow users to 'zoom-in' and examine the distribution of hot-spots at a variety of spatial scales.
MIROVA Middle InfraRed Observation of Volcanic Activity (MIROVA) is a near real time volcanic hot-spot detection system based on the analysis of MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) data. In particular, MIROVA uses the Middle InfraRed Radiation (MIR), measured over target volcanoes, in order to detect, locate and measure the heat radiation sourced from volcanic activity.