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Report on Kizimen (Russia) — 22 December-28 December 2010


Smithsonian Institution / US Geological Survey
Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 22 December-28 December 2010
Managing Editor: Sally Sennert.

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2010. Report on Kizimen (Russia) (Sennert, S, ed.). Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 22 December-28 December 2010. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Weekly Report (22 December-28 December 2010)



55.131°N, 160.32°E; summit elev. 2334 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

KVERT reported that during 17-24 December seismic activity at Kizimen was above background levels, and a thermal anomaly over the lava dome was detected in satellite imagery. The number of shallow seismic earthquakes increased from 110 events on 17 December to 304 events on 22 December. Volcanic tremor was detected on 23 December. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange.

During 26-28 December seismicity increased and there were possible small ash explosions and hot avalanches. A thermal anomaly over the lava dome was seen in satellite imagery. The Aviation Color Code was raised to Red. On 27 December seismic analysis indicated that ash plumes possibly rose to altitudes of 3.5-4.5 km (11,500-14,800 ft) a.s.l. Satellite imagery showed ash plumes drifting 140 km W at an altitude of 4 km (13,100 ft) a.s.l. On 28 December, based on a Yelizovo Airport (UHPP) notice, the Tokyo VAAC reported an ash plume drifting W at an altitude of 3.7 km (12,000 ft) a.s.l.

Geological Summary. Kizimen is an isolated, conical stratovolcano that is morphologically similar to St. Helens prior to its 1980 eruption. The summit consists of overlapping lava domes, and blocky lava flows descend the flanks of the volcano, which is the westernmost of a volcanic chain north of Kronotsky volcano. The 2334-m-high edifice was formed during four eruptive cycles beginning about 12,000 years ago and lasting 2000-3500 years. The largest eruptions took place about 10,000 and 8300-8400 years ago, and three periods of long-term lava dome growth have occurred. The latest eruptive cycle began about 3000 years ago with a large explosion and was followed by intermittent lava dome growth lasting about 1000 years. An explosive eruption about 1100 years ago produced a lateral blast and created a 1.0 x 0.7 km wide crater breached to the NE, inside which a small lava dome (the fourth at Kizimen) has grown. Prior to 2010, only a single explosive eruption, during 1927-28, had been recorded in historical time.

Sources: Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC), Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)