Report on Poas (Costa Rica) — 28 June-4 July 2017
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 28 June-4 July 2017
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2017. Report on Poas (Costa Rica). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 28 June-4 July 2017. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
10.2°N, 84.233°W; summit elev. 2708 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
OVSICORI-UNA reported low-to-moderate-amplitude tremor with occasional periods of high-frequency volcano-tectonic events detected at Poás during 28-29 June. Webcams recorded intense incandescence at night from the bottom of the crater. A sulfur odor was noted in San Rafael de Poás and Vara Blanca. An event at 1115 on 19 June generated a plume that rose 1 km above the vents. An event at 1450 may have generated a plume, but poor visibility did not allow for confirmation. During 1-4 July frequent but small Strombolian activity ejected incandescent material that fell around vent “A” (Boca Roja). Plumes of water vapor, magmatic gases, and particulates rose at most 500 m from the vents.
Geologic Background. The broad, well-vegetated edifice of Poás, one of the most active volcanoes of Costa Rica, contains three craters along a N-S line. The frequently visited multi-hued summit crater lakes of the basaltic-to-dacitic volcano, which is one of Costa Rica's most prominent natural landmarks, are easily accessible by vehicle from the nearby capital city of San José. A N-S-trending fissure cutting the 2708-m-high complex stratovolcano extends to the lower northern flank, where it has produced the Congo stratovolcano and several lake-filled maars. The southernmost of the two summit crater lakes, Botos, is cold and clear and last erupted about 7500 years ago. The more prominent geothermally heated northern lake, Laguna Caliente, is one of the world's most acidic natural lakes, with a pH of near zero. It has been the site of frequent phreatic and phreatomagmatic eruptions since the first historical eruption was reported in 1828. Eruptions often include geyser-like ejections of crater-lake water.