Report on Colima (Mexico) — 23 November-29 November 2016
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
23 November-29 November 2016
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2016. Report on Colima (Mexico). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 23 November-29 November 2016. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
19.514°N, 103.62°W; summit elev. 3850 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
Based on satellite, webcam, and wind data, the Washington VAAC reported that on 26 November an ash plume from Colima rose to an altitude of 4.9 km (16,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted 75 km W. The next day a gas plume with possible ash content rose to an altitude of 5.5 (18,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted almost 20 km N. On 28 November an ash plume rose to an altitude of 5.2 km (17,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted 13 km NE.
Geological Summary. The Colima complex is the most prominent volcanic center of the western Mexican Volcanic Belt. It consists of two southward-younging volcanoes, Nevado de Colima (the high point of the complex) on the north and the historically active Volcán de Colima at the south. A group of late-Pleistocene cinder cones is located on the floor of the Colima graben west and east of the complex. Volcán de Colima (also known as Volcán Fuego) is a youthful stratovolcano constructed within a 5-km-wide scarp, breached to the south, that has been the source of large debris avalanches. Major slope failures have occurred repeatedly from both the Nevado and Colima cones, producing thick debris-avalanche deposits on three sides of the complex. Frequent recorded eruptions date back to the 16th century. Occasional major explosive eruptions have destroyed the summit (most recently in 1913) and left a deep, steep-sided crater that was slowly refilled and then overtopped by lava dome growth.