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Report on Popocatepetl (Mexico) — 7 June-13 June 2023


Smithsonian Institution / US Geological Survey
Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 7 June-13 June 2023
Managing Editor: Sally Sennert.

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2023. Report on Popocatepetl (Mexico) (Sennert, S, ed.). Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 7 June-13 June 2023. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Weekly Report (7 June-13 June 2023)



19.023°N, 98.622°W; summit elev. 5393 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

CENAPRED reported that there were 35-101 daily steam-and-gas emissions, sometimes containing minor amounts of ash, rising from Popocatépetl during 6-13 June. Daily minor or moderate explosions were recorded during 6-11 June. Periods of low-to-moderate amplitude, high-frequency tremor lasting from 34 minutes to just over six hours were recorded each day. A few volcano-tectonic earthquakes with magnitudes of 1.2-2 were recorded during 6, 8, and 11-12 June. According to the Washington VAAC daily ash plumes rose 5.8-7 km (19,000-23,000 ft) a.s.l., or around as high as 1.6 km above the summit, and drifted generally drifted SE, SSE, S, and SW. Minor ashfall was reported in Hueyapan (16 km SSW), Zacualpan de Amilpas (30 km SSW), Temoac (32 km SSW), Jonacatepec de Leandro Valle (43 km SSW), and Tetela del Volcán (18 km SW), all within the Mexican state of Morelos during 11-12 June, and in Hueyapan, Yecapixtla (30 km SW), Ayala (45 km SW), and Jantetelco during 12-13 June. The Alert Level remained at Yellow, Phase Two (the middle level on a three-color scale) and the public was warned to stay 12 km away from the crater.

Geological Summary. Volcán Popocatépetl, whose name is the Aztec word for smoking mountain, rises 70 km SE of Mexico City to form North America's 2nd-highest volcano. The glacier-clad stratovolcano contains a steep-walled, 400 x 600 m wide crater. The generally symmetrical volcano is modified by the sharp-peaked Ventorrillo on the NW, a remnant of an earlier volcano. At least three previous major cones were destroyed by gravitational failure during the Pleistocene, producing massive debris-avalanche deposits covering broad areas to the south. The modern volcano was constructed south of the late-Pleistocene to Holocene El Fraile cone. Three major Plinian eruptions, the most recent of which took place about 800 CE, have occurred since the mid-Holocene, accompanied by pyroclastic flows and voluminous lahars that swept basins below the volcano. Frequent historical eruptions, first recorded in Aztec codices, have occurred since Pre-Columbian time.

Source: Centro Nacional de Prevencion de Desastres (CENAPRED)