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Report on Telica (Nicaragua) — February 1989


Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, vol. 14, no. 2 (February 1989)
Managing Editor: Lindsay McClelland.

Telica (Nicaragua) Incandescence seen at four vents on the crater floor

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 1989. Report on Telica (Nicaragua) (McClelland, L., ed.). Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, 14:2. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.SEAN198902-344040



12.606°N, 86.84°W; summit elev. 1036 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

During fieldwork at the summit crater 9-10 March, incandescence from four closely spaced vents on the crater floor was observed at night. Brightness temperatures were obtained with Minolta Cyclops 33 (bandpass 8-14 µm, 1° field of view) and Cyclops 52 (bandpass 0.8-1.1 µm, 0.33° field of view) infrared thermometers. Temperatures are not corrected for emissivity and atmospheric absorption effects. A brightness temperature of 550°C was measured at night (Cyclops 52) but the hot target filled only a fraction of the field of view.

Geological Summary. Telica, one of Nicaragua's most active volcanoes, has erupted frequently since the beginning of the Spanish era. This volcano group consists of several interlocking cones and vents with a general NW alignment. Sixteenth-century eruptions were reported at symmetrical Santa Clara volcano at the SW end of the group. However, its eroded and breached crater has been covered by forests throughout historical time, and these eruptions may have originated from Telica, whose upper slopes in contrast are unvegetated. The steep-sided cone of Telica is truncated by a 700-m-wide double crater; the southern crater, the source of recent eruptions, is 120 m deep. El Liston, immediately E, has several nested craters. The fumaroles and boiling mudpots of Hervideros de San Jacinto, SE of Telica, form a prominent geothermal area frequented by tourists, and geothermal exploration has occurred nearby.

Information Contacts: C.M.M. Oppenheimer and D.A. Rothery, Open Univ; B. van Vyk de Vries, O. Castellon, and L. Urbina, INETER.