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Report on Esmeralda Bank (United States) — June 1982

Esmeralda Bank

Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, vol. 7, no. 6 (June 1982)
Managing Editor: Lindsay McClelland.

Esmeralda Bank (United States) Submarine sulfur emission

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 1982. Report on Esmeralda Bank (United States) (McClelland, L., ed.). Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, 7:6. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.SEAN198206-284210

Esmeralda Bank

United States

15°N, 145.25°E; summit elev. -43 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

In April, "sulfur boil" activity was observed at the submarine volcano Esmeralda Bank from the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service research vessel Townsend Cromwell. The sulfur emission can be seen as an area of strong mixing above the Bank on a 6 April bottom profile. The research vessel's log notes three sources of sulfur emission on 21 April, the strongest near a shoal at 50 m depth, a second S of a ridge just S of the main shoal, and the third in the saddle between these two shallow areas. The next day, the main source remained strongly active and emission continued from the saddle vent, but by 24 April sulfur emission was only barely visible.

Further Reference. Gorshkov, A.P., Gavrilenko, G.M., Seliverstov, N.I., and Scripko, K.A., 1982, Geologic Structure and fumarolic activity of the Esmeralda submarine volcano, in Schmincke, H.-U., Baker, P.E., and Forjaz, V.H. (eds.), Proceedings of the International Symposium on the Activity of Oceanic Volcanoes: Arquipélago, Serie Ciéncias da Natureza (Univ. Azores) no. 3, p. 271-298.

Geological Summary. Esmeralda Bank is a massive submarine volcano with three summit cones oriented along a N-S line. Their summits are from 43 to 140 m beneath the sea surface. The highest, middle peak contains a 3-km-wide caldera open to the west and several parasitic cones. Frequent sulfur boils and water discoloration have been observed, which have variously been attributed to eruptive events or solfataric activity.

Information Contacts: L. Eldredge, Univ. of Guam.