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Report on Langila (Papua New Guinea) — September 1990


Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network, vol. 15, no. 9 (September 1990)
Managing Editor: Lindsay McClelland.

Langila (Papua New Guinea) Continued Vulcanian activity

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 1990. Report on Langila (Papua New Guinea) (McClelland, L., ed.). Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network, 15:9. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.BGVN199009-252010


Papua New Guinea

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

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

"Moderate Vulcanian activity involving Crater 3 continued in September. Crater 3 produced frequent mild Vulcanian explosions, with occasional larger ones (6-38/day). The larger explosions, which ejected clouds to as much as 500 m above the crater, generated large-amplitude, impulsive seismic signals, while many of the smaller explosions were almost aseismic. A small pyroclastic avalanche may have been produced on 2 September. Incandescent rocks were observed tumbling down the NW flank at about 0330, accompanied by loud explosions and rumbling sounds. Ashfalls were reported from inhabited areas ([~9] km downwind) on six days. Ejections of incandescent lava fragments were reported 3-5 September, and steady crater glow was observed on 10 September.

"Activity at Crater 2 consisted mainly of weak-moderate emissions of white vapour, with rare ash emissions. The emissions sustained a column 100-200 m high and a plume several kilometers long. Deep rumbling sounds were heard on many days, and weak crater glow was frequently observed.

"An aerial inspection on 3 September revealed that Crater 3 is ~100 m in diameter and its N rim is markedly lower than the S rim. The active vent is in the N part of the crater and has built a small cone of ejecta. Crater 2 is ~150 m across and has a shallow bowl shape. The active vent has formed a funnel-shaped crater in the NE part of Crater 2."

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: I. Itikarai and C. McKee, RVO.