Matthew Island

Photo of this volcano
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  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 22.33°S
  • 171.32°E

  • 177 m
    581 ft

  • 258010
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

  • Volcano
    Number

Most Recent Bulletin Report: March 1983 (SEAN 08:03) Cite this Report


White vapor from central crater

A Vanuatu government team arrived at Matthew Island on 10 March at 0700. The only activity noted was emission of wispy, white vapor from the central crater in the island's W (main) edifice.

Further Reference. Maillet, P., Monzier, M., and Lefevre, C., 1987, Petrology of Matthew and Hunter volcanoes, South New Hebrides Island Arc (Southwest Pacific): JVGR, v. 30, p. 1-29.

Information Contacts: A. Macfarlane, Dept. of Geology, Mines, and Rural Water Supplies, Vanuatu.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Weekly Reports available for Matthew Island.

Bulletin Reports - Index


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.

12/1976 (NSEB 01:15) Extensive dust clouds and water discoloration

01/1977 (NSEB 02:01) Additional details from 27 November observation flight

07/1977 (NSEB 02:07) Photograph from 11 February showing the vent

03/1983 (SEAN 08:03) White vapor from central crater




Information is preliminary and subject to change. All times are local (unless otherwise noted)


December 1976 (NSEB 01:15) Cite this Report


Extensive dust clouds and water discoloration

On 27 November, the crew of a RNZAF P3 aircraft noted extensive dust clouds above Matthew Island, and discoloration of the surrounding water. The New Zealand Defense Scientific Establishment is investigating this activity.

Information Contacts: J. Latter, DSIR, Wellington; Defense Scientific Establishment, Auckland; J. Barnes, N.Z. Defense Staff, Washington DC.


January 1977 (NSEB 02:01) Cite this Report


Additional details from 27 November observation flight

The following is additional information obtained by the RNZAF from the crew of the aircraft that flew over Matthew Island on 27 November.

During the overflight, the volcano emitted a gray dust cloud that merged with a layer of stratus clouds (held to about 350 m altitude by a temperature inversion). A strong sulfur odor was present in the area. Muddy gray discolored water was carried SE by the current. Because of poor weather and light conditions, no photographs were taken. More recent information on the activity is not available.

Information Contacts: Defense Scientific Establishment, Auckland; J. Barnes, N.Z. Defense Staff, Washington DC.


July 1977 (NSEB 02:07) Cite this Report


Photograph from 11 February showing the vent

[An RNZAF crew flew over Matthew Island on 11 February and photographed the volcano. The vent was weakly emitting vapor (figure 1).]

Figure 1. Photograph taken from the N on 11 February 1977, showing the vent and about 2/3 of Matthew Island. Photograph taken by the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF).

Information Contacts: I. Nairn, NZGS, Rotorua.


March 1983 (SEAN 08:03) Cite this Report


White vapor from central crater

A Vanuatu government team arrived at Matthew Island on 10 March at 0700. The only activity noted was emission of wispy, white vapor from the central crater in the island's W (main) edifice.

Further Reference. Maillet, P., Monzier, M., and Lefevre, C., 1987, Petrology of Matthew and Hunter volcanoes, South New Hebrides Island Arc (Southwest Pacific): JVGR, v. 30, p. 1-29.

Information Contacts: A. Macfarlane, Dept. of Geology, Mines, and Rural Water Supplies, Vanuatu.

Basic Data

Volcano Number

Last Known Eruption

Elevation

Latitude
Longitude
258010

1956 CE

177 m / 581 ft

22.33°S
171.32°E

Volcano Types

Stratovolcano

Rock Types

Major
Andesite / Basaltic Andesite
Dacite

Tectonic Setting

Subduction zone
Crustal thickness unknown

Population

Within 5 km
Within 10 km
Within 30 km
Within 100 km
1
1
1
1

Geological Summary

Isolated Matthew Island is composed of two low andesitic-to-dacitic cones separated by a narrow isthmus. Matthew Island was discovered in 1788 by a ship captain, who named the island after the owner of his vessel. Only the triangular eastern portion of the small, 0.6 x 1.2 km wide island was present prior to the 1940s, when construction of the larger western segment began; it consists primarily of lava flows. The 177-m-high western cone contains a crater that is breached to the NW and is filled by a lava flow whose terminus forms the NW coast.

References

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

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

Maillet P, Monzier M, Lefevre C, 1986. Petrology of Matthew and Hunter volcanoes, south New Hebrides island arc (southwest Pacific). J Volc Geotherm Res, 30: 1-27.

Monzier M, Danyushevsky L V, Crawford A J, Bellon H, Cotton J, 1993. High-Mg andesites from the southern termination of the New Hebrides island arc (SW Pacific). J Volc Geotherm Res, 57: 193-217.

Eruptive History


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


Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
[ 1976 Nov 27 ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain 1  
[ 1966 Aug ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    
1956 ± 2 years Unknown Confirmed 0 Historical Observations West-Matthew
1954 Oct (?) Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations West-Matthew (October 1954, not 1953)
1949 (in or before) Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations West-Matthew
[ 1828 Jan ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    

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

Matheu | Mathew

Cones

Feature Name Feature Type Elevation Latitude Longitude
East-Matthew Cone 142 m
West-Matthew Cone 177 m

Photo Gallery


On November 27, 1976, a "dust cloud," water discoloration, and sulfur odor were reported from Matthew Island. It was later noted that no noticeable eruptive event or change in island morphology had occurred since 1958. This February 1977 photo shows the steaming crater of Matthew Island volcano.

Photo by Royal New Zealand Air Force, 1977.
Isolated Matthew Island is composed of two low cones separated by a narrow isthmus. Matthew Island was discovered in 1788 by a ship captain, who named the island after the owner of his vessel. Only the triangular eastern portion of the small, 0.6 x 1.2 km wide island was present prior to the 1940's, when construction of the larger western segment (part of which is seen in the photo) began. The 177-m-high western cone consists primarily of lava flows and contains a crater that is breached to the NW.

Photo by Royal New Zealand Air Force, 1977.

Smithsonian Sample Collections Database


A listing of samples from the Smithsonian collections will be available soon.

Affiliated Sites

Large Eruptions of Matthew Island 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.