Report on Nyamulagira (DR Congo) — 31 January-6 February 2001
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
31 January-6 February 2001
Managing Editor: Gari Mayberry
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2001. Report on Nyamulagira (DR Congo). In: Mayberry, G (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 31 January-6 February 2001. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
1.408°S, 29.2°E; summit elev. 3058 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
According to a preliminary report from USAID/OFDA, Nyamuragira began erupting at 0032 on 6 February. Observations made during a flight over the volcano revealed that there were active lava flows. The lava appeared to be flowing from two fissures; one to the W towards the town of Kitchanga, and another to the S in the direction of the town of Mugunga (Sake) and Nyiragongo volcano. Smoke was observed near the volcano and the sound of thunder was heard. Cloudy conditions prevented clear observations of the volcano.
Geological Summary. Africa's most active volcano, Nyamulagira (also known as Nyamuragira), is a massive high-potassium basaltic shield about 25 km N of Lake Kivu and 15 km NE of the steep-sided Nyiragongo volcano. The summit is truncated by a small 2 x 2.3 km caldera that has walls up to about 100 m high. Documented eruptions have occurred within the summit caldera, as well as from the numerous flank fissures and cinder cones. A lava lake in the summit crater, active since at least 1921, drained in 1938, at the time of a major flank eruption. Recent lava flows extend down the flanks more than 30 km from the summit as far as Lake Kivu; extensive lava flows from this volcano have covered 1,500 km2 of the western branch of the East African Rift.