Report on Colima (Mexico) — 4 January-10 January 2017
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
4 January-10 January 2017
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2017. Report on Colima (Mexico). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 4 January-10 January 2017. 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 webcam and satellite images, the Mexico City MWO, and Colima Towers, the Washington VAAC reported that during 3-10 January ash plumes from Colima rose to altitudes of 4.7-6.7 km (17,000-25,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted E, SE, S, and SW. The Unidad Estatal de Protección Civil de Colima reported that an explosion detected at 1602 on 7 January was slightly stronger than a moderate level, and that winds were drifting SSE.
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.