Report on Etna (Italy) — 5 June-11 June 2019
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
5 June-11 June 2019
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2019. Report on Etna (Italy). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 5 June-11 June 2019. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
37.748°N, 14.999°E; summit elev. 3357 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
INGV reported that explosions at the fissure segment at 2,850 m elevation on the SE base of Etna’s New Southeast Crater (NSEC) declined in frequency and intensity during 3-4 June; explosions ceased on 5 June. The lava flow from the fissure was active only near the vent on 5 June and by the next day had ceased and began cooling. Sporadic ash emissions rose from Northeast Crater (NEC) and quickly dissipated on 6 June.
The report noted that the NE edge of the NSEC cone had dropped several meters, likely in conjunction with a period of ash emissions on 30 May. In addition, a hot zone high on the SE flank of the cone that was established prior to the recent eruption was extensively covered with colored fumarolic deposits by 6 June.
Geological Summary. Mount Etna, towering above Catania on the island of Sicily, has one of the world's longest documented records of volcanism, dating back to 1500 BCE. Historical lava flows of basaltic composition cover much of the surface of this massive volcano, whose edifice is the highest and most voluminous in Italy. The Mongibello stratovolcano, truncated by several small calderas, was constructed during the late Pleistocene and Holocene over an older shield volcano. The most prominent morphological feature of Etna is the Valle del Bove, a 5 x 10 km caldera open to the east. Two styles of eruptive activity typically occur, sometimes simultaneously. Persistent explosive eruptions, sometimes with minor lava emissions, take place from one or more summit craters. Flank vents, typically with higher effusion rates, are less frequently active and originate from fissures that open progressively downward from near the summit (usually accompanied by Strombolian eruptions at the upper end). Cinder cones are commonly constructed over the vents of lower-flank lava flows. Lava flows extend to the foot of the volcano on all sides and have reached the sea over a broad area on the SE flank.