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Report on Karymsky (Russia) — August 2009


Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network, vol. 34, no. 8 (August 2009)
Managing Editor: Richard Wunderman.

Karymsky (Russia) New 14 August explosion crater formed on S side of upper summit

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2009. Report on Karymsky (Russia) (Wunderman, R., ed.). Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network, 34:8. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.BGVN200908-300130



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

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

This report covers 23 January to 9 September 2009, an interval with both thermal anomalies and ash plumes. A new explosion crater formed on the upper S flank on 14 August 2009. Many thermal anomalies were detected during 21 February to 1 March 2009 (figure 20).

Figure (see Caption) Figure 20. A plot of thermal anomalies registered during 1 February to 4 June 2009. Data provided in lower table. Courtesy of the Kamchatka Branch of the Geophysical Service of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

During March 2009, Karymsky plumes were abundant (table 5). They were extending up to 200 km long on the 12th and 16th-17th. During 25 April and 19 May activity decreased although gas-and-steam emissions continued (figure 21).

Table 5. Summary of plumes observed at Karymsky during 21 February to 4 June 2009. Data compiled from listed sources.

Date(s) Ash Plume Source
21 Feb 2009 150 km NE KEMSD; Tokyo VAAC
04 Mar 2009 120 km SE KEMSD; Tokyo VAAC
05 Mar 2009 75 km ENE; 64 km SE NOAA 16; NOAA 17
06 Mar 2009 160 km E; 115 km E NOAA 17; NOAA 16
07 Mar 2009 115 km SE NOAA 16
08 Mar 2009 50 km SW NOAA 16; NOAA 17
09 Mar 2009 50 km SW; 30 km E NOAA 17
12 Mar 2009 200 km E KEMSD; Tokyo VAAC
13 Mar 2009 130 km E NOAA 17; NOAA 16
16-17 Mar 2009 200 km E KEMSD; Tokyo VAAC
26 Mar 2009 ash deposits to 30 km S KEMSD; Tokyo VAAC
04 Jun 2009 30 km SE KEMSD; Tokyo VAAC
Figure (see Caption) Figure 21. Karymsky as seen on 18 April 2009. View was from the SE. Photo by A. Manevich.

Volcanologists reported from a camp on Karymsky lake that at 1600 on 14 August 2009 they noticed a series of small ash emissions. They saw plumes rising to ~ 2.5 km altitude. As a result of the eruption, a crater formed on the volcano's upper S slope. The new explosion crater was round and deep, with a diameter of 70 m. At the time of the call the crater was still steaming to a height of 200 m above the crater (figure 22).

Figure (see Caption) Figure 22. Explosion crater on the S slope of Karymsky as seen on 18 August 2009 (four days after it formed). Photo by S. Chirkov.

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: Kamchatka Volcanic Eruptions Response Team (KVERT), Far East Division, Russian Academy of Sciences, 9 Piip Blvd., Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, 683006, Russia (URL: http://www.kscnet.ru/ivs/); Kamchatka Branch of the Geophysical Service, Russian Academy of Sciences (KB GS RAS), Piip Ave. 9, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, 683006, Russia (URL: http://www.emsd.ru/~ssl/monitoring/main.htm); Sergei Chirkov and Alexander Manevich, IV&S FED RAS; Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC), Tokyo, Japan (URL: http://ds.data.jma.go.jp/svd/vaac/data/).