Sierra Nevada

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  • Chile-Argentina
  • South America
  • Complex
  • Unknown - Evidence Credible
  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 26.48°S
  • 68.58°W

  • 6173 m
    20247 ft

  • 355123
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit

  • Volcano

The Global Volcanism Program has no activity reports for Sierra Nevada.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Weekly Reports available for Sierra Nevada.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Bulletin Reports available for Sierra Nevada.

Basic Data

Volcano Number

Last Known Eruption



Unknown - Evidence Credible

6173 m / 20247 ft


Volcano Types


Rock Types

No Data (checked)

Tectonic Setting

Subduction zone
Continental crust (> 25 km)


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

Geological Summary

The Sierra Nevada volcanic complex, located in one of the most inaccessible parts of the Central Andes, covers an area of about 225 sq km astride the Chile-Argentina border. The complex is of partial Holocene age and includes at least 12 volcanic vents with associated lava flows (de Silva and Francis, 1991). Craters up to 400 m in diameter and large andesitic lava flows that extend up to 7 km with well-developed flow ridges are present. The oldest part of the complex, at its eastern end in Argentina, includes two stratovolcanoes, one with a 1-km-wide summit crater.


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

de Silva S L, Francis P W, 1991. Volcanoes of the Central Andes. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 216 p.

Gonzalez-Ferran O, 1995. Volcanes de Chile. Santiago: Instituto Geografico Militar, 635 p.

Pichler H, Zeil W, 1971. The Cenozoic rhyolite-andesite association of the Chilean Andes. Bull Volc, 35: 424-452.

The Global Volcanism Program is not aware of any Holocene eruptions from Sierra Nevada. If this volcano has had large eruptions (VEI >= 4) prior to 10,000 years ago, information might be found on the Sierra Nevada page in the LaMEVE (Large Magnitude Explosive Volcanic Eruptions) database, a part of the Volcano Global Risk Identification and Analysis Project (VOGRIPA).

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.


Nevada de Lagunas Bravas, Sierra | Bravas, Lagunas


Feature Name Feature Type Elevation Latitude Longitude
Cumbre del Laudo Stratovolcano 6120 m 26° 30' 0" S 68° 31' 0" W

Photo Gallery

The large snow-covered massif near the center of this NASA Space Shuttle image (with north to the upper left) is the Sierra Nevada volcanic complex. The complex covers an area of about 225 sq km astride the Chile-Argentina border and includes at least a dozen volcanic vents with associated lava flows. Two large Pleistocene calderas lie south of Sierra Nevada, the 22-km-wide Wheelright caldera (part of which is visible at the lower left) and Escondida at the bottom center, with a lake on its caldera floor.

NASA Space Shuttle image STS100-710-48, 2001 (

Smithsonian Sample Collections Database

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

Affiliated Sites

Large Eruptions of Sierra Nevada 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.