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Report on Manam (Papua New Guinea) — December 1982


Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, vol. 7, no. 12 (December 1982)
Managing Editor: Lindsay McClelland.

Manam (Papua New Guinea) Light ashfalls; increased seismicity

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 1982. Report on Manam (Papua New Guinea) (McClelland, L., ed.). Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, 7:12. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.SEAN198212-251020


Papua New Guinea

4.08°S, 145.037°E; summit elev. 1807 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

"Both craters displayed a moderate level of activity through December. A moderately thick white to grey plume was released from Main crater while Southern crater produced grey to brown ash-laden emissions. These emissions, accompanied by weak and low rumbling noises, resulted in occasional light ashfalls on coastal parts of the island.

"The level of seismicity increased during the month (number of recorded shocks from 1,500 to 2,000/day; background tremor becoming continuous from 19 December). The average amplitude of the seismic events increased on 13-17 December and again on 27-28 December. Emissions from Main crater increased in volume and pressure, but instead of explosions or crater glow the seismic activity dropped again suddenly (from 2,200 on 28 December) to a low level and tremor stopped."

Further Reference. Scott, B.J., and McKee, C.O., 1984, Deformation, earth tidal influences, and eruptive activity at Manam volcano, Papua New Guinea, 1957-82: Geological Survey of Papua New Guinea Report 84/3.

Geological Summary. The 10-km-wide island of Manam, lying 13 km off the northern coast of mainland Papua New Guinea, is one of the country's most active volcanoes. Four large radial valleys extend from the unvegetated summit of the conical basaltic-andesitic stratovolcano to its lower flanks. These valleys channel lava flows and pyroclastic avalanches that have sometimes reached the coast. Five small satellitic centers are located near the island's shoreline on the northern, southern, and western sides. Two summit craters are present; both are active, although most observed eruptions have originated from the southern crater, concentrating eruptive products during much of the past century into the SE valley. Frequent eruptions, typically of mild-to-moderate scale, have been recorded since 1616. Occasional larger eruptions have produced pyroclastic flows and lava flows that reached flat-lying coastal areas and entered the sea, sometimes impacting populated areas.

Information Contacts: P. de Saint Ours and P. Lowenstein, RVO.