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Global Volcanism Program | Image GVP-02850

A series of phreatic eruptions beginning 27 March 1980 preceded the major eruption of 18 May. These relatively small steam-driven eruptions ejected ash and gas from the summit, creating a new crater and blanketing the flanks with ash. The material ejected consisted of fragments from the 350-year-old lava dome that formed the summit. Photo by Don Swanson, 1980 (U.S. Geological Survey).

A series of phreatic eruptions beginning 27 March 1980 preceded the major eruption of 18 May. These relatively small steam-driven eruptions ejected ash and gas from the summit, creating a new crater and blanketing the flanks with ash. The material ejected consisted of fragments from the 350-year-old lava dome that formed the summit.

Photo by Don Swanson, 1980 (U.S. Geological Survey).

Keywords: ash plume | ash | phreatic | explosive eruption


St. Helens