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Report on Iliamna (United States) — 14 March-20 March 2012

Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 14 March-20 March 2012
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2012. Report on Iliamna (United States). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 14 March-20 March 2012. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Volcano Profile |  Weekly Report (14 March-20 March 2012)


Iliamna

United States

60.032°N, 153.09°W; summit elev. 3053 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)


AVO reported that during 9-20 March seismicity at Iliamna was above background levels. Satellite images acquired during 9-16 March showed a plume drifting 56 km downwind that was likely water vapor. The report noted that long-lived fumaroles at the summit of Iliamna frequently produced visible plumes, but the current plume appeared to be more robust than usual. Scientists aboard an overflight on 17 March observed vigorous and plentiful fumaroles at the summit, consistent with the elevated gas emissions. Gas measurements indicated that the volcano was emitting elevated levels of sulfur dioxide and carbon dioxide. The Alert Level remained at Advisory and the Aviation Color Code remained at Yellow.

Geologic Background. Iliamna is a prominentglacier-covered stratovolcano in Lake Clark National Park on the western side of Cook Inlet, about 225 km SW of Anchorage. Its flat-topped summit is flanked on the south, along a 5-km-long ridge, by the prominent North and South Twin Peaks, satellitic lava dome complexes. The Johnson Glacier dome complex lies on the NE flank. Steep headwalls on the S and E flanks expose an inaccessible cross-section of the volcano. Major glaciers radiate from the summit, and valleys below the summit contain debris-avalanche and lahar deposits. Only a few major Holocene explosive eruptions have occurred from the deeply dissected volcano, which lacks a distinct crater. Most of the reports of historical eruptions may represent plumes from vigorous fumaroles E and SE of the summit, which are often mistaken for eruption columns (Miller et al., 1998). Eruptions producing pyroclastic flows have been dated at as recent as about 300 and 140 years ago, and elevated seismicity accompanying dike emplacement beneath the volcano was recorded in 1996.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)