Report on Reventador (Ecuador) — 13 April-19 April 2022
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
13 April-19 April 2022
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2022. Report on Reventador (Ecuador). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 13 April-19 April 2022. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
0.077°S, 77.656°W; summit elev. 3562 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
IG staff observed high levels of activity at Reventador during a field visit from 4 to 7 April, and noted sporadic emissions with moderate ash content. They viewed the volcano with a thermal camera and saw an active lava flow on the upper NNE flank, producing rock avalanches as it advanced. The flow was 1.7-2 km long and effused from a vent about 200 m below the summit on the NNE flank. Two inactive and cooling flows were located adjacent to the active flow. Activity continued to be high during 12-19 April, though cloudy weather conditions frequently prevented visual observations. Steam, gas, and ash plumes, often observed multiple times a day with the webcam or reported by the Washington VAAC, rose as high as 1 km above the summit crater and drifted W and NW. Crater incandescence was visible most nights and early mornings; incandescent material was visible descending the flanks during 13-14 April.
Geological Summary. Volcán El Reventador is the most frequently active of a chain of Ecuadorian volcanoes in the Cordillera Real, well east of the principal volcanic axis. The forested, dominantly andesitic stratovolcano has 4-km-wide avalanche scarp open to the E formed by edifice collapse. A young, unvegetated, cone rises from the amphitheater floor about 1,300 m to a height comparable to the rim. It has been the source of numerous lava flows as well as explosive eruptions visible from Quito, about 90 km ESE. Frequent lahars in this region of heavy rainfall have constructed a debris plain on the eastern floor of the scarp. The largest recorded eruption took place in 2002, producing a 17-km-high eruption column, pyroclastic flows that traveled up to 8 km, and lava flows from summit and flank vents.