Little Sitkin

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  • United States
  • Alaska
  • Stratovolcano
  • 1830 CE
  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 51.95°N
  • 178.543°E

  • 1174 m
    3851 ft

  • 311050
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

  • Volcano
    Number

9 January-15 January 2013

On 9 January, AVO reported that unrest at Little Sitkin had decreased over the past several months, reaching background levels. The Volcano Alert Level was lowered to Normal and the Aviation Color Code was lowered to Green.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)

Index of Weekly Reports


2013: January
2012: August | September | October

Weekly Reports


9 January-15 January 2013

On 9 January, AVO reported that unrest at Little Sitkin had decreased over the past several months, reaching background levels. The Volcano Alert Level was lowered to Normal and the Aviation Color Code was lowered to Green.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)


17 October-23 October 2012

AVO reported that during 17-23 October seismic activity at Little Sitkin remained elevated and satellite views were mostly obscured by clouds. AVO noted that there were no other reports of unusual activity. The Aviation Color Code remained at Yellow and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Advisory.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)


19 September-25 September 2012

AVO reported that during 19-24 September seismic activity at Little Sitkin remained elevated and satellite views were mostly obscured by clouds. On 21 September AVO noted that the frequency of earthquakes had declined during the previous week. The Aviation Color Code remained at Yellow and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Advisory.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)


12 September-18 September 2012

AVO reported that during 11-18 September seismic activity at Little Sitkin remained elevated and satellite views were obscured by clouds. Two earthquake swarms were detected on 11 and 13 September. The Aviation Color Code remained at Yellow and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Advisory.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)


5 September-11 September 2012

AVO reported that during 5-11 September seismic activity at Little Sitkin was much lower than the peak of activity during 29-30 August, but continued to remain elevated. Satellite views were obscured by clouds during 5 and 8-11 September. The Aviation Color Code remained at Yellow and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Advisory.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)


29 August-4 September 2012

AVO reported that at approximately 1915 on 29 August a swarm of high-frequency earthquakes was detected at Little Sitkin. The anomalous seismic activity continued through the night, prompting AVO to raise the Aviation Color Code to Yellow and the Volcano Alert Level to Advisory. The rate of anomalous seismicity varied during 30-31 August; the two most active periods were during the morning of 30 August and at about 0400 on 31 August. The rate of earthquakes started to decline at around 0600 on 31 August, but remained elevated through 3 September. Little Sitkin is monitored by a four-station seismic network as well as satellite imagery.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)


The Global Volcanism Program has no Bulletin Reports available for Little Sitkin.

Diamond-shaped Little Sitkin Island is bounded by steep cliffs on the east, north, and NE sides. Little Sitkin volcano contains two nested calderas. The older, nearly circular Pleistocene caldera is 4.8 km wide, may have once contained a caldera lake, and was partially filled by a younger cone formed mostly of andesitic and dacitic lava flows. The elliptical younger caldera is 2.7 x 4 km wide; it lies within the eastern part of the older caldera and shares its eastern and southern rim. The younger caldera partially destroyed the lava cone within the first caldera and is of possible early Holocene age. Young-looking dacitic lava flows, erupted in 1828 (Kay, in Wood and Kienle 1990), issued from the central cone within the younger caldera and from a vent on the west flank outside the older caldera. Fumarolic areas are found near the western coast, along the NW margin of the older caldera, and from the summit crater down the southern flank for a 1 km distance.

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

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
1828 1830 Confirmed   Historical Observations Summit and west flank
1776 Unknown Confirmed 1 Historical Observations

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
Little Sitchin | Sitchin | Sitignak (?) | Malyi Sitkin
Snow-covered Little Sitkin volcano rises beyond Williwaw Cove on the NW side of the island. The sharp-topped unnamed peak at the left is part of the Williwaw Cove Formation, consisting of Tertiary to Quaternary lava flows. Two nested calderas lie between this peak and historically active Little Sitkin; the younger of these may be of early Holocene age. The older Pleistocene caldera, whose low rim lies just beyond the thin cloud bank in the center, may have once contained a caldera lake.

Photo by Steve Ebbert, 2000 (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service).

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.

Coats R R, 1950. Volcanic activity in the Aleutian Arc. U S Geol Surv Bull, 974-B: 35-47.

Henning R A, Rosenthal C H, Olds B, Reading E (eds), 1976. Alaska's volcanoes, northern link in the ring of fire. Alaska Geog, 4: 1-88.

IAVCEI, 1973-80. Post-Miocene Volcanoes of the World. IAVCEI Data Sheets, Rome: Internatl Assoc Volc Chemistry Earth's Interior..

Miller T P, McGimsey R G, Richter D H, Riehle J R, Nye C J, Yount M E, Dumoulin J A, 1998. Catalogue of the historically active volcanoes of Alaska. U S Geol Surv Open-File Rpt, 98-582: 1-104.

Motyka R J, Liss S A, Nye C J, Moorman M A, 1993. Geothermal resources of the Aleutian arc. Alaska Div Geol Geophys Surv, Prof Rpt, no 114, 17 p and 4 map sheets.

Myers J D, 1994. The Geology, Geochemistry and Petrology of the recent Magmatic Phase of the Central and Western Aleutian Arc. Unpublished manuscript, unpaginated.

Smith R L, Shaw H R, Luedke R G, Russell S L, 1978. Comprehensive tables giving physical data and thermal energy estimates for young igneous systems of the United States. U S Geol Surv Open-File Rpt, 78-925: 1-25.

Snyder G L, 1959. Geology of Little Sitkin Island, Alaska. U S Geol Surv Bull, 1028-H: 169-210.

Wood C A, Kienle J (eds), 1990. Volcanoes of North America. Cambridge, England: Cambridge Univ Press, 354 p.

Volcano Types

Stratovolcano
Caldera(s)

Tectonic Setting

Subduction zone
Intermediate crust (15-25 km)

Rock Types

Major
Andesite / Basaltic Andesite
Dacite

Population

Within 5 km
Within 10 km
Within 30 km
Within 100 km
0
0
0
0

Affiliated Databases

Large Eruptions of Little Sitkin 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.