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Report on Karymsky (Russia) — July 2006


Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network, vol. 31, no. 7 (July 2006)
Managing Editor: Richard Wunderman.

Karymsky (Russia) Ash plumes reaching 5 km; ongoing eruptions through at least mid-2006

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2006. Report on Karymsky (Russia) (Wunderman, R., ed.). Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network, 31:7. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.BGVN200607-300130



54.049°N, 159.443°E; summit elev. 1513 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

During April, May and June 2006, intermittent eruptive activity at Karymsky continued. Pilots had previously reported ash emissions from Karymsky rising to 3-5 km altitude during January to April 2006, during which time Karymsky remained at Concern Color Code Orange (BGVN 31:04). The same color code stayed in effect through August 2006.

Based on interpretations of April-June 2006 seismic data, ash plumes rose to altitudes of between 3 and 8 km. Satellite imagery showed a large thermal anomaly at the volcano's crater from January to August 2006, and numerous ash plumes and deposits extended 10-200 km SE and E of the volcano.

During 10-16 June 2006, 400-600 shallow earthquakes occurred daily. Ash plumes up to 5 km altitude traveling SE were observed by pilots. On 19 June, the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA's Terra satellite captured a false-color image of an ash plume from Karymsky (figure 12). During 21-27 June 200-700 shallow earthquakes occurred daily; during 23-30 June, 100-350 shallow earthquakes occurred daily.

Figure (see Caption) Figure 12. Karymsky had been erupting several times a day for about a week prior to emitting this ash plume on 19 June 2006. The ASTER instrument on NASA's Terra satellite captured this false-color image. Red indicates vegetation, which is lush around the volcano but very sparse on its slopes. The water of Karymskoye Lake appears in blue. The volcano's barren sides are dark gray, and the volcanic plume and nearby haze appear in white or gray. Image courtesy of NASA; created by Jesse Allen, Earth Observatory, using expedited ASTER data provided the NASA/GSFC/MITI/ERSDAC/JAROS and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team.

According to the Tokyo VAAC, the Kamchatkan Experimental and Methodical Seismological Department (KEMSD) reported that during July 2006 ash plumes reached altitudes between 3 and 7 km. Approximately 100-350 shallow earthquakes occurred daily during 29 June to 3 July, and increased to 1,000 per day during 4-5 July.

Activity at Karymsky continued during 8-14 July, with 250-1000 shallow earthquakes occurring daily. Based on interpretations of seismic data, ash plumes reached altitudes of 5 km.

During August 2006, 100-300 shallow earthquakes occurred daily. Based on interpretations of seismic data, ash plumes reached altitudes of 3-3.7 km.

Geological Summary. Karymsky, the most active volcano of Kamchatka's eastern volcanic zone, is a symmetrical stratovolcano constructed within a 5-km-wide caldera that formed during the early Holocene. The caldera cuts the south side of the Pleistocene Dvor volcano and is located outside the north margin of the large mid-Pleistocene Polovinka caldera, which contains the smaller Akademia Nauk and Odnoboky calderas. Most seismicity preceding Karymsky eruptions originated beneath Akademia Nauk caldera, located immediately south. The caldera enclosing Karymsky formed about 7600-7700 radiocarbon years ago; construction of the stratovolcano began about 2000 years later. The latest eruptive period began about 500 years ago, following a 2300-year quiescence. Much of the cone is mantled by lava flows less than 200 years old. Historical eruptions have been vulcanian or vulcanian-strombolian with moderate explosive activity and occasional lava flows from the summit crater.

Information Contacts: Olga Girina, Kamchatka Volcanic Eruptions Response Team (KVERT), a cooperative program of the Institute of Volcanic Geology and Geochemistry, Far East Division, Russian Academy of Sciences, Piip Ave. 9, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, 683006, Russia, the Kamchatka Experimental and Methodical Seismological Department (KEMSD), GS RAS (Russia), and the Alaska Volcano Observatory (USA); Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO), a cooperative program of the U.S. Geological Survey, 4200 University Drive, Anchorage, AK 99508-4667, USA (URL: http://www.avo.alaska.edu/), the Geophysical Institute, University of Alaska, PO Box 757320, Fairbanks, AK 99775-7320, USA, and the Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, 794 University Ave., Suite 200, Fairbanks, AK 99709, USA; Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC) (URL: https://ds.data.jma.go.jp/svd/vaac/data/).