Report on Yasur (Vanuatu) — 12 January-18 January 2022
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
12 January-18 January 2022
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2022. Report on Yasur (Vanuatu). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 12 January-18 January 2022. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
19.532°S, 169.447°E; summit elev. 361 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
The Wellington VAAC reported that on 15 January intermittent low-level ash plumes from Yasur rose 1.5 km (5,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SE. Ashfall was reported in nearby villages. A Sentinel satellite image acquired that same day showed a strip of ash deposits in areas to the NW. Continuous, low-level ash plumes were visible in satellite and webcam images on 17 and 18 January rising to 1.5 km a.s.l. and drifting SE and W, respectively.
Geological Summary. Yasur, the best-known and most frequently visited of the Vanuatu volcanoes, has been in more-or-less continuous Strombolian and Vulcanian activity since Captain Cook observed ash eruptions in 1774. This style of activity may have continued for the past 800 years. Located at the SE tip of Tanna Island, this mostly unvegetated pyroclastic cone has a nearly circular, 400-m-wide summit crater. The active cone is largely contained within the small Yenkahe caldera, and is the youngest of a group of Holocene volcanic centers constructed over the down-dropped NE flank of the Pleistocene Tukosmeru volcano. The Yenkahe horst is located within the Siwi ring fracture, a 4-km-wide, horseshoe-shaped caldera associated with eruption of the andesitic Siwi pyroclastic sequence. Active tectonism along the Yenkahe horst accompanying eruptions has raised Port Resolution harbor more than 20 m during the past century.