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Report on Esmeralda Bank (United States) — August 1987


Esmeralda Bank

Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, vol. 12, no. 8 (August 1987)
Managing Editor: Lindsay McClelland.

Esmeralda Bank (United States) Bubbling and discolored water

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 1987. Report on Esmeralda Bank (United States) (McClelland, L., ed.). Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, 12:8. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.SEAN198708-284210



Esmeralda Bank

United States

15°N, 145.25°E; summit elev. -43 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)


On 26 May, the pilot of a charter aircraft observed a heavy "boil" on the ocean surface over Esmeralda, feeding an elongate zone of discolored water. The pilot reported that he had not seen activity at Esmeralda in many years. On 4 June, L.G. Eldredge and the same pilot flew over Esmeralda, but saw no water movement or discoloration.

Geological Summary. Esmeralda Bank is a massive submarine volcano with three summit cones oriented along a N-S line. Their summits are from 43 to 140 m beneath the sea surface. The highest, middle peak contains a 3-km-wide caldera open to the west and several parasitic cones. Frequent sulfur boils and water discoloration have been observed, which have variously been attributed to eruptive events or solfataric activity.

Information Contacts: L. Eldredge, University of Guam.