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The Taapaca volcanic complex, lying west of the main Andean chain, rises NE of the small town of Putre in northern Chile. The elongated volcanic massif, known locally as Nevados de Putre, consists of an initial andesitic stratovolcano and a long-term dacitic lava-dome complex. Taapaca overlies Pleistocene ignimbrite deposits and trends roughly E-W, with activity in general migrating to the SW during four principal periods of activity dating back at least 1.5 million years. At least three major edifice collapse events have produced debris-avalanche deposits, the youngest of which underlies Putre, the principal settlement of the northern Chilean Altiplano. Recent geological studies have shown that explosive activity at Taapaca with dome growth and associated block-and-ash flows and lahars has continued into the late Holocene. The youngest volcanic stage beginning about 9000 years ago produced the 5860-m-high summit lava dome of the Putre Unit at the eastern and southern ends of the complex. The latest documented activity produced an ash layer dated at about 2000 years ago.
Summary of Holocene eruption dates and Volcanic Explosivity Indices (VEI).
|Start Date||Stop Date||Eruption Certainty||VEI||Evidence||Activity Area or Unit|
|0320 BCE ± 50 years||Unknown||Confirmed||Radiocarbon (uncorrected)|
|1580 BCE ± 75 years||Unknown||Confirmed||Radiocarbon (uncorrected)|
|1860 BCE ± 100 years||Unknown||Confirmed||Radiocarbon (uncorrected)|
|2400 BCE ± 75 years||Unknown||Confirmed||Radiocarbon (uncorrected)|
|2950 BCE ± 75 years||Unknown||Confirmed||Radiocarbon (uncorrected)|
|4620 BCE ± 75 years||Unknown||Confirmed||Radiocarbon (uncorrected)|
|5490 BCE ± 50 years||Unknown||Confirmed||Radiocarbon (uncorrected)|
|7900 BCE ± 75 years||Unknown||Confirmed||Radiocarbon (uncorrected)|
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.
|Putre, Nevados de|
|Feature Name||Feature Type||Elevation||Latitude||Longitude|
|Putre, Nevados de||Stratovolcano||18° 6' 0" S||69° 27' 0" W|
|The snow-capped Taapaca (Nevados de Putre) volcanic complex rises to the north above rhyodacitic pyroclastic deposits in the Pampa del Muerto. Taapaca volcano rises NE of the town of Putre in northern Chile. Putre is built on top of debris-avalanche deposits from Taapaca, which consists of a dacitic lava-dome complex. The latest stage of activity during the Holocene produced the 5860-m-high summit lava dome complex (center horizon).
Photo by Oscar González-Ferrán (University of Chile).
|The Taapaca volcanic complex rises to the NE above the town of Putre, just out of view to the left. The elongated volcanic massif consists of an initial andesitic stratovolcano and a long-term dacitic lava-dome complex. The 5860-m-high dome complex on the right horizon is part of the Holocene Putre unit, formed during the latest eruptive stage. The left-hand dome is part of the late-Pleistocene Socapave unit. A pyroclastic apron from Taapaca, including a late-Pleistocene debris-avalanche deposit, forms the foreground.
Photo by Lee Siebert, 2004 (Smithsonian Institution).
|The elongated Taapaca massif rises to the SE above the gentle slopes of block-and-ash flow deposits from the volcano. The steeply dipping lava flow on the left horizon caps hydrothermally altered rocks of a Pleistocene stratovolcano of the Taapaca II complex. The dome complex at the center is of part of the dacitic Pleistocene Taapaca III complex, and the light-colored dome at the right is part of the dacitic Pleistocene-to-Holocene Taapaca IV complex.
Photo by Lee Siebert, 2004 (Smithsonian Institution).
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.
Clavero J E, Sparks R S J, Pringle M S, Polanco E, Gardeweg M C, 2004. Evolution and volcanic hazards of Taapaca Volcanic Complex, Central Andes of Northern Chile. J Geol Soc London, 161: 603-618.
de Silva S L, 1990. . (pers. comm.).
de Silva S L, Francis P W, 1991. Volcanoes of the Central Andes. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 216 p.
Gonzalez-Ferran O, 1972. Distribucion del volcanismo activo de Chile y la reciente erupcion del Volcan Villarrica. Instituto Geog Militar Chile, O/T 3491.
Gonzalez-Ferran O, 1995. Volcanes de Chile. Santiago: Instituto Geografico Militar, 635 p.
Gonzalez-Ferran O, 1974. Arica - Nevados de Payachata. IAVCEI Andean Antarctic Volc Problems Guide Book - Excursion A-1, 3-35.
Moreno H, 1985. . (pers. comm.).
Worner G, Hammerschmidt K, Henjes-Kunst F, Lezaun J, Wilke H, 2000. Geochronology (40Ar/39Ar, K-Ar and He-exposure ages) of Cenozoic magmatic rocks from Northern Chile (18-22° S): implications for magmatism and tectonic evolution of the central Andes. Rev Geol Chile, 27: 205-240.