Report on Krakatau (Indonesia) — 10 May-16 May 2023
Smithsonian Institution / US Geological Survey
Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 10 May-16 May 2023
Managing Editor: Sally Sennert.
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2023. Report on Krakatau (Indonesia) (Sennert, S, ed.). Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 10 May-16 May 2023. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
6.1009°S, 105.4233°E; summit elev. 285 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
During 10-13 May PVMBG reported that white-and-gray and white-and-brown ash plumes generally rose as high as 200 m above Anak Krakatau’s summit and drifted SW and NW, though a few Volcano Observatory Notices for Aviation (VONAs) described higher plumes. At 1241 on 11 May a gray ash plume rose 1 km above summit and drifted SW. At 0920 on 12 May a dense gray ash plume rose 2.5 km and drifted SW. At 2320 a dense gray ash plume rose 1.5 km and drifted SW. An accompanying webcam image showed incandescent material being ejected above the vent. At 0710 on 13 May a dense gray ash plume rose 2 km and drifted SW. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-4), and the public was warned to stay at least 5 km away from the crater.
Geological Summary. The renowned Krakatau (frequently mis-named as Krakatoa) volcano lies in the Sunda Strait between Java and Sumatra. Collapse of an older edifice, perhaps in 416 or 535 CE, formed a 7-km-wide caldera. Remnants of that volcano are preserved in Verlaten and Lang Islands; subsequently the Rakata, Danan, and Perbuwatan cones were formed, coalescing to create the pre-1883 Krakatau Island. Caldera collapse during the catastrophic 1883 eruption destroyed Danan and Perbuwatan, and left only a remnant of Rakata. This eruption caused more than 36,000 fatalities, most as a result of tsunamis that swept the adjacent coastlines of Sumatra and Java. Pyroclastic surges traveled 40 km across the Sunda Strait and reached the Sumatra coast. After a quiescence of less than a half century, the post-collapse cone of Anak Krakatau (Child of Krakatau) was constructed within the 1883 caldera at a point between the former Danan and Perbuwatan cones. Anak Krakatau has been the site of frequent eruptions since 1927.