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Report on Langila (Papua New Guinea) — December 1982


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

Langila (Papua New Guinea) Increasingly violent Vulcanian eruptions

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 1982. Report on Langila (Papua New Guinea) (McClelland, L., ed.). Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, 7:12. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.SEAN198212-252010


Papua New Guinea

5.525°S, 148.42°E; summit elev. 1330 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

"Activity increased in December. Crater 2 produced thick white emissions while Crater 3 released white or blue vapours. Seismicity was generally low. Vulcanian explosions of increasing violence occurred from Crater 2 on 1, 14, 16, 25, and 26 December. On these occasions, the development of a dark grey ash-laden column up to 9 km was accompanied by loud rumbling noises and explosion earthquakes, and followed by light ashfalls. On 16 and 26 December harmonic tremor accompanied the subsequent escape of gases and tephra. The large explosion on the 26th at 1400 was accompanied by vivid lightning, ejected incandescent boulders up to 2 km from the crater, and started bush fires on the NW flank of the volcano. Twenty explosion shocks were recorded over the background tremor during a 25-minute period after the eruption, and Crater 2 remained incandescent for 45 minutes."

Geological Summary. Langila, one of the most active volcanoes of New Britain, consists of a group of four small overlapping composite basaltic-andesitic cones on the lower E flank of the extinct Talawe volcano in the Cape Gloucester area of NW New Britain. A rectangular, 2.5-km-long crater is breached widely to the SE; Langila was constructed NE of the breached crater of Talawe. An extensive lava field reaches the coast on the N and NE sides of Langila. Frequent mild-to-moderate explosive eruptions, sometimes accompanied by lava flows, have been recorded since the 19th century from three active craters at the summit. The youngest and smallest crater (no. 3 crater) was formed in 1960 and has a diameter of 150 m.

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