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Report on Bam (Papua New Guinea) — March 1981


Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, vol. 6, no. 3 (March 1981)
Managing Editor: Lindsay McClelland.

Bam (Papua New Guinea) Discolored water

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 1981. Report on Bam (Papua New Guinea) (McClelland, L., ed.). Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, 6:3. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.SEAN198103-251010


Papua New Guinea

3.613°S, 144.818°E; summit elev. 685 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

During aerial inspections 6 and 19 March, a 1-km-long zone of orange sea discoloration was noted at the S shore of Bam Island.

Geological Summary. The small 2.4 x 1.6 km island of Bam is the summit of a mostly submerged volcano that is one of the more active in Papua New Guinea. Bam is the SE-most of the Schouten Islands, and lies off the coast of New Guinea, about 40 km NNE of the mouth of the Sepik River. A steep-walled summit crater that is 300 m wide and 180 m deep is the source of recent eruptions, which have kept the upper half of the cone sparsely vegetated. A NE-trending landslide scarp extends across the upper part of the andesitic volcano from the SW coast, and a large submarine debris-avalanche deposits lies to the S and SW. The younger summit cone partially buries the eastern side of the collapse scarp. A recent lava platform on the N flank supports the small island's only villages. Historical eruptions, recorded since 1872, have been restricted to small-to-moderate explosive activity from the summit crater.

Information Contacts: Acting Senior Volcanologist, RVO.