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Report on Marapi (Indonesia) — December 1987


Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, vol. 12, no. 12 (December 1987)
Managing Editor: Lindsay McClelland.

Marapi (Indonesia) Many small explosions; light ashfall over W part of island

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 1987. Report on Marapi (Indonesia) (McClelland, L., ed.). Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, 12:12. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.SEAN198712-261140



0.38°S, 100.474°E; summit elev. 2885 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

At least 17 small explosions were recorded during December. One of the largest, on 7 December at 0648, sent a plume from the summit area's Verbeek Crater to ~900 m height. Additional larger explosions occurred on 24 December at 0625 (plume to 1,000 m) and on 27 December at 0007 (plume not visible). Other plumes from December explosions reached 700-1,000 m above the crater. Light ashfall was reported from a wide area of W Sumatra.

Geological Summary. Gunung Marapi, not to be confused with the better-known Merapi volcano on Java, is Sumatra's most active volcano. This massive complex stratovolcano rises 2,000 m above the Bukittinggi Plain in the Padang Highlands. A broad summit contains multiple partially overlapping summit craters constructed within the small 1.4-km-wide Bancah caldera. The summit craters are located along an ENE-WSW line, with volcanism migrating to the west. More than 50 eruptions, typically consisting of small-to-moderate explosive activity, have been recorded since the end of the 18th century; no lava flows outside the summit craters have been reported in historical time.

Information Contacts: VSI.