Volcanic Activity Report
Earth Changes News
The alert-level system for all volcanoes monitored by the USGS was changed on 1 October from a numerical system to a descriptive system. In the new system, alert-level Normal indicates background conditions and is equivalent to aviation color-code Green. The previous alert levels of Volcanic Unrest (Alert Level 1), Volcano Advisory (Alert Level 2) and Volcano Alert (Alert Level 3) have changed to "Advisory," "Watch," and "Warning," respectively. There is a subtle change to the aviation color-code definitions in that there is no longer an ash-plume threshold given for either Orange or Red. Watch; Aviation color code ORANGE." The alert-level "Watch" is used for two different situations: (1) heightened or escalating unrest indicating a higher potential that an eruption is likely, but still not certain; or (2) an eruption that poses only limited hazard.
ABBREVIATED COLOR CODE KEY :
GREEN volcano is dormant; normal seismicity and fumarolic activity occurring = Normal
YELLOW volcano is restless; eruption may occur
ORANGE volcano is in eruption or eruption may occur at any time
RED significant eruption is occurring or explosive eruption expected at any time
Kamchatkan and Northern Kuriles Volcanic Activity
Kamchatka Volcanic Eruption Response Team
Volcanoes of the Kurile Islands Activity
Preparing for Natural Disasters and Weather Emergencies
Natural disasters are the effect of natural hazards, such as avalanches, blizzards, floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, and wildfires. These unexpected events lead to financial, environmental loss, as well as loss of animal and human life. Natural disasters can occur due to an individual's lack of preparedness, which leaves them vulnerable to uncontrollable forces. A natural hazard distinctly means a natural phenomena that has not resulted in significant damage or loss of life. Some key points of preparedness involve securing one's home, developing an evacuation plan, and storing enough food and water to survive long periods of tumultuous activity.
Bali's Mount Agung Volcano Erupts; About 100,000 Ordered to Evacuate, Airport Closed
Officials expanded evacuation orders Monday as an Indonesian volcano continued to erupt, spewing ash nearly 10,000 feet into the atmosphere.
Bali's Ngurah Rai International Airport was forced to close as a result of the eruptions, stranding tens of thousands of travelers. Mount Agung's eruptions could be heard as far as 7.5 miles away.
The agency raised the volcano's alert to the highest level early Monday and expanded the danger zone to 6 miles in places from the previous 4.7 miles. It said a larger eruption is possible. Mudflows of volcanic debris and water known as a lahar were seen rushing down the mountain.
Spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho told a news conference in Jakarta that the extension of the danger zone affects 22 villages and about 90,000 to 100,000 people. He said about 40,000 people have evacuated but others have not left because they feel safe or don't want to abandon their livestock.
Nov. 18, 2017 - A new ice-cauldron has formed this week within the Öræfajökull volcano caldera, prompting the Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO) to raise the aviation color code for the volcano to yellow. The last eruptive episode of this volcano started in August 1727 and ended in May 1727. The cauldron is about 1 km (0.62 miles) in diameter and 21 to 25 meters deep and it reflects a recent increase in geothermal activity within the caldera. The office has also registered an increase in the seismic activity in the last few months, but it has been low for the past days.
This is the first time in documented history that such ice cauldrons has formed in Öræfajökull volcano. It is now believed that the ice cauldron has been emptying itself all week resulting in smell of sulphur in Kvíá glacier river.
Sunday, October 01, 2017 by: Lance D Johnson
(Natural News) As the global warming parade eagerly waits in anticipation for Earth’s temperatures to rise, a group of scientists warn that one of the world’s largest super volcanoes could erupt, setting off a chain of events that would actually cause wide scale cooling of the Earth’s climate. Centuries ago, the volcanic caldera known as Campi Flegrei erupted just west of Naples, sending tons of ash into the atmosphere. This ash, rich in sulfur dioxide, blocked solar radiation, causing global temperatures to fall. The caldera is active today. Pressure is building as the super volcano nears eruption. Read full article here.
Matua Island (Russia)
Chuginadak Island (USA)
Paramushir Island (Russia)
Hawaiian Islands (USA)
Central Kamchatka (Russia)
Ryukyu Islands (Japan)
NASA may accidentally set off the Yellowstone supervolcano in a risky effort to prevent it from blowing
Monday, August 21, 2017 by: Jhoanna Robinson
(Natural News) Scientists at National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) may have come up with an unconventional plan to save the United States from the supposed explosion of the allegedly newly active volcano at the Yellowstone National Park.
Lying underneath the Yellowstone National Park is a huge magma chamber called a caldera, which is responsible for making geysers and hot springs hot. It erupts every 600,000 years and is home to scenic spots such as 10,000 hot springs, mud pots, and geysers, including the cone geyser called Old Faithful.
NASA Advisory Council on Planetary Defense former member Brian Wilcox shared a recent report regarding the recently-active caldera, noting, “I was a member of the NASA Advisory Council on Planetary Defense which studied ways for NASA to defend the planet from asteroids and comets. I came to the conclusion during that study that the supervolcano threat is substantially greater than the asteoid or comet threat.”
Read the full article...they want to drill and inject water!!!
USGS Says California Needs Close Monitoring Of 8 Active Volcanoes
August 13th, 2017
California could be even closer to a major natural disaster than ever before. With eight active volcanoes and a high state population, the United States Geological Survey says that the Golden State is in desperate need of very close monitoring. Read foll article with map here.
Young Volcanos in California & Nevada
Very High Threat Potential:
Lassen, Long Valley, Mount Shasta
High Threat Potential:
Clear Lake, Medicine Lake, Mon-Inyo Chain, Salton Buttes
Keep updated on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/agungvolcanobali/
Mount Agung in Bali - Possible Eruption
As of Oct. 3, 2017 Agung has NOT erupted. There is activity on the mountain.
Evacuees numbering over 100,000 are still living in tents, though some from outside the exclusion zone who voluntarily self-evacuated have been asked to return home, due to strain on resources.
Warning level of possible volcanic eruption remains at level IV (4), the highest warning level Airspace aviation level is Orange, the second highest.
On-going high number of tremors and quakes suggest the movement of magma inside the volcano, with magnitude of earthquakes continuing to increase, and being felt not just in the area around the volcano, but as far away as Denpasar and the popular beach area of Kuta, near the airport. The strongest quake, located close to the volcano, clocked in at 4.3M (on 27th September).
From satellite images new steam emissions and thermal area can be seen from the crater, while from monitoring stations around the volcano are observing white steam clouds, sometimes rising up to 200m above the summit. After a quake on the 26th, a larger white steam cloud rose up to 500m above the summit.
A fissure vent has been spotted at the volcano’s crater, with the head of the Volcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation Center (PVMBG), Gede Suantika, confirming that there is a fissure vent, or crack at the crater of Agung. He said the fracturing is an indicator that the volcano will likely soon eruption.
Typical eruption style: Highly explosive. Agung volcano eruptions: 1808, 1821(?), 1843, 1963-64 (large Plinian eruption on March 16, 1963)
Ol Doinyo Lengai
Hornitos on crater floor seen from E rim, July 2004. Dark lava flow is only hours old.
'Mountain of God' Volcano Preparing to Erupt
The East African peak looms over a modern city as well as three major sites featuring signs of early humans.
This active volcano in the northeastern Tanzania area, known as the “Mountain of God”, has been rumbling and is showing signs of an imminent eruption.
Ol Doinyo Lengal is a 7,650 foot peak that belches out lava rich with a type of rock called carbonatite. The last eruption was on September 4, 2007 when it belched out a plume of ash that extended at least 11 miles downwind. Burn scars on the north and west flanks were visible from space.
Tracking devices were installed in 2016 and on January 17,02017 showed that parts of the volcano were lifting upward.
“There are increasedash emissions, earthquakes, uplift at small volcanic cones, and an every widening crack at the top of the volcano on the west side. These are all signs of volcanic deformation that will likely lead to an eruption sooner rather than later. Imminent in our case means in one second, in a few weeks, a couple of months, or a year or more.: stated Dr. Sarah Stamps, a geophysicist at Virginia tech.
Sierra Nevada Earthquake Swarm
Long Valley Caldera
Earthquakes in the Mammoth Lakes / Long Valley, CA area have reached 471 quakes in the range of 0.1 + in the last 7 days (July 6 – 13, 2017)
Long Valley Caldera rattled by more than 1059 earthquakes in latest seismic swarm
The USGS California Volcanic Observatory states that these quakes do not seem to be the result of magma movement below the surface, so there's no concern that the swarm is a precursor to a volcanic eruption.The quakes are occurring beneath the Long Valley Caldera, about a 20-mile wide depression in the earth next to Mammoth Mountain. The USGS reports that this is the latest of several earthquake swarms this year under the caldera, which is slowly rising. Despite the several felt earthquakes, this is still rather modest activity compared with the much more energetic swarms occurring in the 1980s and 1990s. We do not see any evidence for anomalous ground deformation associated with the swarm at this time. Part of the Long Valley Caldera, known as the "resurgent dome," has been uplifting at a rate of about an inch per year since late 2011, and this remains unchanged. Caldera uplift has occurred sporadically for the last few decades. The uplift rate observed since 2011 is small compared to rates observed in the 1980s and 1990s.
HAWAIIAN VOLCANO OBSERVATORY DAILY UPDATE
U.S. Geological Survey
Momday, Oct. 2, 2017
KILAUEA VOLCANO (VNUM #332010)
19°25'16" N 155°17'13" W, Summit Elevation 4091 ft (1247 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: WATCH
Current Aviation Color Code: ORANGE
Activity Summary: Activity continues at the summit and from the Pu?u ???? vent on the East Rift Zone. There has been a marked drop in seismic tremor on the East Rift Zone over the weekend. Webcam images and NPS reports suggest that by late yesterday afternoon the ocean entry at Kamokuna was waxing and waning. This morning, surface flow activity persists on the upper portion of the flow field and on the pali, with minor breakouts still scattered in areas of the coastal plain. These lava flows pose no threat to nearby communities at this time. Typical rates of ground deformation, seismicity, gas release and lava lake activity continue at the summit of the volcano.
MAUNA LOA VOLCANO (VNUM #332020)
19°28'30" N 155°36'29" W, Summit Elevation 13681 ft (4170 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: ADVISORY
Current Aviation Color Code: YELLOW
Activity Summary: Mauna Loa Volcano is not erupting. Rates of deformation and seismicity have not changed significantly in the past week, and continue to be above long-term background levels.
Observations: Small-magnitude earthquakes continue to occur beneath the volcano. During the past week, these were primarily beneath the caldera and upper Southwest Rift Zone, at depths less than 5 km (3 miles).
Background: Re-inflation of Mauna Loa's shallow magma storage reservoirs started immediately following the most recent eruption in 1984, then turned to deflation for almost a decade. In mid-2002, inflation started again, just after a brief swarm of deep long-period (LP) earthquakes. A more intense swarm of several thousand deep Long Period (LP) earthquakes occurred in late 2004, immediately preceding a dramatic increase in inflation rate. Inflation slowed again in 2006, ceased altogether in late 2009, and resumed slowly in late 2010.
Rising gradually to more than 4 km above sea level, Mauna Loa is the largest active volcano on our planet and is among Earth's most active volcanoes, having erupted 33 times since its first well-documented historical eruption in 1843. Its most recent eruption was in 1984. Fore more information on Mauna Loa, see the USGS Fact sheet available at http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2012/3104/fs2012-3104.pdf.. Its long submarine flanks descend to the sea floor an additional 5 km, and the sea floor in turn is depressed by Mauna Loa's great mass another 8 km. This makes the volcano's summit about 17 km (56,000 ft) above its base! The enormous volcano covers half of the Island of Hawai`i and by itself amounts to about 85 percent of all the other Hawaiian Islands combined.
See Bottom of Page for Map of Volcano Locations
BOGOSLOF VOLCANO (VNUM #311300)
53°55'38" N 168°2'4" W, Summit Elevation 492 ft (150 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: ADVISORY
Current Aviation Color Code: YELLOW
Low-level unrest at Bogoslof Volcano continues. Nothing significant was observed in partly cloudy satellite images over the past 24 hours. Nothing noteworthy was detected in seismic or infrasound data from sensors located on neighboring islands.
Volcanic explosions producing high-altitude (>15,000 ft asl) volcanic clouds remain possible with little or no warning. Some previous explosions have been preceded by an increase in earthquake activity that allowed for short-term forecasts of imminent significant explosive activity. Although we are able to detect energetic explosive activity in real-time, there can be a lag of tens of minutes until we can characterize the magnitude of the event and the altitude of the volcanic cloud. With existing data sources, AVO may not detect low-level unrest, including minor explosive activity. Such low-level periods of unrest and possible explosions could pose hazards near the volcano.
CLEVELAND VOLCANO (VNUM #311240)
52°49'20" N 169°56'42" W, Summit Elevation 5676 ft (1730 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: WATCH
Current Aviation Color Code: ORANGE
Unrest at Cleveland volcano continues. Nothing significant was observed in partly cloudy satellite images over the past day. A few small earthquakes were recorded at the volcano during the last 24 hours. No other activity was detected by seismic or infrasound sensors.
Lava effusion is typically confined to the summit crater at Cleveland, with the last significant lava flow (that extended to the ocean) occurring in 2001. The lava domes that have been erupted since 2001 have all been destroyed by explosive activity within weeks to months after lava effusion. These explosions typically produce relatively small volcanic ash clouds that dissipate within hours; however, more significant ash emissions have occurred.
Cleveland volcano is monitored with a limited real-time seismic network, which inhibits AVO's ability to detect precursory unrest that may lead to an explosive eruption. Rapid detection of an ash-producing eruption may be possible using a combination of seismic, infrasound, lightning, and satellite data.
YELLOWSTONE VOLCANO OBSERVATORY MONTHLY UPDATE
U.S. Geological Survey
YELLOWSTONE VOLCANO (VNUM #325010)
44°25'48" N 110°40'12" W, Summit Elevation 9203 ft (2805 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: NORMAL
Current Aviation Color Code: GREEN
During July 2017, the University of Utah Seismograph Stations, responsible for the operation and analysis of the Yellowstone Seismic Network, reports 528 earthquakes were located in the Yellowstone National Park (YNP) region. The largest event was a minor earthquake of magnitude 3.6 on July 18, at 02:31 PM MDT, located about nine miles north northeast of West Yellowstone, MT. The earthquake was reported felt in the town of West Yellowstone, MT. This earthquake is part of a continued energetic sequence of earthquakes in the same area that began on June 12.
July seismicity in Yellowstone was marked by the ongoing seismicity ~six miles north of West Yellowstone, MT where an energetic swarm added an additional 475 earthquakes in July to the 1028 earthquakes in June. The swarm includes the largest event of the month on July 18 (magnitude 3.6). Swarm activity for July consists of two earthquakes in the magnitude 3 range and 40 earthquakes in the magnitude 2 range. Including the events from last month beginning on June 12, total swarm seismicity includes one earthquake of magnitude 4.4, seven in the magnitude 3 range, and 112 earthquakes in the magnitude 2 range.
Earthquake sequences like these are common and account for roughly 50% of the total seismicity in the Yellowstone region.
Yellowstone earthquake activity is currently at elevated levels compared with typical background activity. To view the daily seismic graphs, click here.
October 3, 2017
The earthquake list for June 12th to Oct. 3, 2017 = 2683. Range of mag of 0.1 to no limit max:
1.3 mag quake at 13 km N of West Yellowstone, Montana on Oct. 2, 2017 at a depth of 11.2 km.
The largest quake of 3.2 mag occurring on 08-15-17 at 14km NNE of West Yellowstone at a depth of 8.6km.
Yellowstone Caldera - The Yellowstone Caldera is the volcanic caldera in Yellowstone National Park in the United States. The caldera is located in the northwest corner of Wyoming, in which the vast majority of the park is contained. The major features of the caldera measure about 55 kilometers (34 mi) by 72 kilometers (45 mi) as determined by geological field work conducted by Bob Christiansen of the United States Geological Survey in the 1960s and 1970s. After a BBC television science program coined the term supervolcano in 2000, it has often been referred to as the Yellowstone Supervolcano. Yellowstone, like Hawaii, is believed to lie on top of an area called a hotspot where light, hot, molten mantle rock rises towards the surface. While the Yellowstone hotspot is now under the Yellowstone Plateau, it previously helped create the eastern Snake River Plain (to the west of Yellowstone) through a series of huge volcanic eruptions. Although the hotspot's apparent motion is to the east-northeast, the North American Plate is really moving west-southwest over the stationary hotspot deep underneath.
Over the past 17 million years or so, this hotspot has generated a succession of violent eruptions and less violent floods of basaltic lava. Together these eruptions have helped create the eastern part of the Snake River Plain from a once-mountainous region. At least a dozen or so of these eruptions were so massive that they are classified as supereruptions. Volcanic eruptions sometimes empty their stores of magma so swiftly that they cause the overlying land to collapse into the emptied magma chamber, forming a geographic depression called a caldera. Calderas formed from explosive supereruptions can be as wide and deep as mid- to large-sized lakes and can be responsible for destroying broad swaths of mountain ranges.
The oldest identified caldera remnant straddles the border near McDermitt, Nevada-Oregon. Progressively younger caldera remnants, most grouped in several overlapping volcanic fields, extend from the Nevada-Oregon border through the eastern Snake River Plain and terminate in the Yellowstone Plateau. One such caldera, the Bruneau-Jarbidge caldera in southern Idaho, was formed between 10 and 12 million years ago, and the event dropped ash to the depth of a foot 1,000 miles (1,600 km) away in northeastern Nebraska and killed a large herd of rhinoceroses, camels, and other animals at Ashfall Fossil Beds State Historical Park. Within the past 17 million years, 142 or more caldera-forming eruptions have occurred from the Yellowstone hotspot . The loosely defined term 'supervolcano' has been used to describe volcanic fields that produce exceptionally large volcanic eruptions. Thus defined, the Yellowstone Supervolcano is the volcanic field which produced the latest three supereruptions from the Yellowstone hotspot. The three super eruptions occurred 2.1 million, 1.3 million, and 640,000 years ago; forming the Island Park Caldera, the Henry's Fork Caldera, and Yellowstone calderas, respectively. The Island Park Caldera supereruption (2.1 million years ago), which produced the Huckleberry Ridge Tuff, was the largest and produced 2,500 times as much ash as the 1980 Mount St. Helens eruption. The next biggest supereruption formed the Yellowstone Caldera (630,000 years ago) and produced the Lava Creek Tuff. The Henry's Fork Caldera (1.2 million years ago) produced the smaller Mesa Falls Tuff but is the only caldera from the SRP-Y hotspot that is plainly visible today.
Non-explosive eruptions of lava and less-violent explosive eruptions have occurred in and near the Yellowstone caldera since the last supereruption. The most recent lava flow occurred about 70,000 years ago, while the largest violent eruption excavated the West Thumb of Lake Yellowstone around 150,000 years ago. Smaller steam explosions occur as well; an explosion 13,800 years ago left a 5 kilometer diameter crater at Mary Bay on the edge of Yellowstone Lake (located in the center of the caldera). Currently, volcanic activity is exhibited via numerous geothermal vents scattered throughout the region, including the famous Old Faithful Geyser, plus recorded ground swelling indicating ongoing inflation of the underlying magma chamber.
The volcanic eruptions, as well as the continuing geothermal activity, are a result of a great cove of magma located below the caldera's surface. The magma in this cove contains gases that are kept dissolved only by the immense pressure that the magma is under. If the pressure is released to a sufficient degree by some geological shift, then some of the gases bubble out and cause the magma to expand. This can cause a runaway reaction. If the expansion results in further relief of pressure, for example, by blowing crust material off the top of the chamber, the result is a very big gas explosion.
Posted on March 31, 2014: A 4.8 magnitude quake rocked Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming near the border with Montana, the US Geological Survey said. There were several aftershocks with a magnitude over 3. The earthquake occurred 37 kilometers northeast of West Yellowstone, Montana at 6:34 am local time (1234 GMT) Sunday. The quake was centered almost in the middle of Yellowstone National Park, near the Norris Geyser Basin, said Peter Cervelli, a spokesman for the USGS Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, NBC News reported. He added that any damage from the temblor would likely be minor, noting there are not many visitors in the park at the moment. There were no immediate reports of damage. According to USGS there were four aftershocks recorded with a magnitude from 3.1 to 3.3. The USGS said that more are expected. The secondary shockwaves are usually less violent than the main quake but can be strong enough to do additional damage to weakened structures, the USGS said.
Cervalli stated that the quake is not expected to trigger any volcanic activity. Yellowstone National park, North America's largest volcanic field, is the home to a caldera, sometimes referred to as the Yellowstone Supervolcano. Due to the volcanic and tectonic nature of the region, the caldera experiences 1 to 20 earthquakes every day, according to Yellowstone observatory. However they are very weak often measuring much less than magnitude 3. The quake on Sunday was the most powerful to hit the park since 1985. In the fall of 1985 in the northwest rim of the caldera during a three-month period of increased earthquake activity over 3000 events of magnitude 0 to 4.9 were recorded by seismologists. Geologists are closely monitoring the rise of the Yellowstone Plateau. The upward movement of the Yellowstone caldera floor between 2004 and 2008 was almost 3 inches (about 7 cm) each year, according to a University of Utah scientists report in the journal Science in November 2008. That was more than three times greater than ever observed since such measurements began in 1923. "Our best evidence is that the crustal magma chamber is filling with molten rock," said seismologist Robert B. Smith, lead author of the study and professor of geophysics at the University of Utah. "But we have no idea how long this process goes on before there either is an eruption or the inflow of molten rock stops and the caldera deflates again," he added. RT
Earthquake swarm under Mammoth Mountain
February 06, 2014 An earthquake swarm under Mammoth Mountain (Mono County, CA), which started slowly on February 3, 2014 intensified in the early hours of February 5 with many small-magnitude earthquakes occurring in rapid succession, a phenomenon known as "spasmodic bursts." The largest earthquake over the ~ 4 hours of heightened activity, a magnitude 3.0, occurred shortly after 1am local time. The swarm is emanating from depths of about 5 km (~ 3 miles) below the surface. Most earthquakes in the swarm are too small to be felt, but the magnitude 3.0 earthquake was felt by a few people in the town of Mammoth Lakes. Presently, earthquake activity beneath the mountain remains above background levels. Earthquake swarms, including spasmodic bursts, occur periodically beneath Mammoth Mountain. The current swarm is notable, however, because it includes the largest magnitude event (M3.0) observed in ~15 years. View chart here This area is Southwest of the Long Valley Caldera
The 16 x 32 km (20 x 10 mi) Long Valley caldera east of the central Sierra Nevada Range formed as a result of the voluminous Bishop Tuff eruption (considered a "super eruption) about 760,000 years ago. Resurgent doming in the central part of the caldera occurred shortly afterwards, and the last eruptions inside the caldera occurred about 50,000 years ago. During early resurgent doming the caldera was filled with a large lake that left lake-shore traces (strandlines) on the caldera walls and the resurgent dome island; the lake eventually drained through the Owens River Gorge. The caldera remains thermally active, with many hot springs and fumaroles, and has had significant deformation, seismicity, and other unrest in recent years.
UPDATED Feb. 5 *** INDICATIONS OF SEVERE EARTHQUAKE / ERUPTION AT YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK
February 2, 2014 -- (TRN) -- A seismometer inside a borehole at Yellowstone National Park has begun reporting staggering underground activity near the southwest corner of Yellowstone Lake, possibly signaling the beginning of an eruption of the Super Volcano at the Yellowstone National Park. TRN has obtained the image of the Seismograph report and now YOU can see it for yourself! This could be very nasty. . Yellowstone lake is pretty much the center of what is the Yellowstone Caldera; the mouth of a massive Super Volcano, located beneath the park.
The activity began around 12:00 Noon, Mountain Standard Time (MST) on February 1, and was detected by a seismometer in Borehole B944 then continued, non-stop, all day yesterday getting worse and worse as the hours wore on. The activity is continuing right now at 6:06 EST AM as this news article is being produced.
Sept. 6, 2013 The world's largest volcano lies hidden beneath the Pacific Ocean about 1,000 miles (1,600 km) east of Japan, researchers announced this week in the journal Nature Geoscience. Called the Tamu Massif, the enormous rounded mound dwarfs the previous record holder, Hawaii's Mauna Loa, said William Sager, lead study author and a geologist at the University of Houston. Mauna Loa, the Earth's largest active volcano, covers only 2,000 square miles, less than two per cent of the size of the Tamu Massif. Measuring 400 miles (650 km) wide and about 2.5 miles (4 km) tall, Tamu is a monster roughly about the size of Arizona. It erupted for a few million years during the early Cretaceous period, about 144 million years ago, the researchers report. The volume of Tamu Massif is about 600,000 cubic miles (2.5 million cubic km), bigger than the British Isles or New Mexico. Its top lies about 6,500 feet (1,980 meters) below the ocean surface today. "The slopes are very shallow," said Sager. "If you were standing on this thing, you would have a difficult time telling which way was downhill." Only 25 percent smaller than Olympus Mons on Mars, it may be the second largest volcano in the solar system.
Almost certainly dead
Fortunately, the volcano is almost certainly dead. "As much as we know that anything's dead, this looks dead," Sager said. Until now, geologists thought Tamu Massif was simply part of an oceanic plateau called Shatsky Rise. Oceanic plateaus are the biggest piles of lava on Earth. Their outpourings have been linked to mass extinctions and climate change. Anyone who wants to explain oceanic plateaus must "be able to explain this volcano forming in one spot and deliver this kind of magma supply in a short time," says Sager.
Named after Texas A&M University
Sager, a longtime Texas A&M University professor, named the feature Tamu Massif because Tamu is short for Texas A&M University. Massif is French for "massive" and is a scientific term for a large mountain. The Tamu Massif is located within the Shatsky rise. (ODP)
La Garita Caldera is a large volcanic caldera located in the San Juan volcanic field in the San Juan Mountains in southwestern Colorado, United States, to the west of the town of La Garita, Colorado. The eruption that created the La Garita Caldera was, perhaps, the largest known explosive eruption in all of Earth's history (the Siberian Traps may have been larger but the cause is still being debated). The La Garita Caldera is one of a number of calderas that formed during a massive ignimbrite flare-up in Colorado, Utah and Nevada from 4025 million years ago, and was the site of truly enormous eruptions about 2826 million years ago, during the Oligocene Epoch. The area devastated by the La Garita eruption is thought to have covered a significant portion of what is now Colorado, and ash could have fallen as far as the east coast of North America and the Caribbean. The scale of La Garita volcanism was far beyond anything known in human history. The resulting deposit, known as the Fish Canyon Tuff, has a volume of approximately 1,200 cubic miles (5,000 km3), enough material to fill Lake Michigan (in comparison, the May 18, 1980 eruption of Mt. St. Helens was only 0.25 cubic miles (1.0 km3) in volume). By contrast, the most powerful human-made explosive device ever detonated, the Tsar Bomba or Emperor Bomb, had a yield of 50 megatons, whereas the eruption at La Garita was approximately 105 times more powerful. It is possibly the most energetic event on Earth since the Chicxulub impact, which was 50 times more powerful.
The California Volcano Observatory (CalVO). At Long Valley Caldera, analysis of continuous GPS data over the first half of 2012 showed a modest inflationary pattern within the caldera; ground motion was directed upward and away from the caldera's center, with a maximum uplift rate between 2 and 3 cm/yr. In January of this year at Clear Lake Volcanic Field, a short-lived swarm of low-magnitude earthquakes was detected under the south flank of Mt Konocti. For detailed info, click here
Automated Volcanic-Gas Sniffer Installed at Mammoth Mountain Fumarole
August 12, 2014 In July 2014, USGS Scientists Peter Kelly (Cascades Volcano Observatory) and Stuart Wilkinson (California Volcano Observatory) installed an automated volcanic-gas monitoring station on Mammoth Mountain, located on the SW rim of Long Valley Caldera (CA). The station tracks the temperature and concentrations of carbon dioxide and other gases at a steaming vent high on the north flank of the mountain known as Mammoth Mountain Fumarole. Temperature and gas composition often fluctuate with earthquake activity under the mountain, probably because shaking opens new pathways for heat and gas to flow towards the surface. The new gas monitor will help scientists track these changes in near real-time. The station will be deployed for the summer months and retrieved before deep snow blankets the mountain.
Small Earthquake Swarm
June 27, 2014 - A swarm of small earthquakes (magnitudes less than 2) occurred at a depth of 6-7 km (about 4 miles) beneath Highway 203 in Mammoth Lakes, California midway between the water treatment plant and the Highway 395-203 junction, June 27, 2014. The swarm began at 4:50 AM and continued with sporadic activity through the morning hours. As of 1:50 PM it appears to have largely died away. We detected no ground deformation associated with this activity, and it poses no immediate hazard.
NVEWS: National Volcano Early Warning System
The National Volcano Early Warning System (NVEWS) is a proposed national-scale plan to ensure that volcanoes are monitored at levels commensurate to their threats. The plan was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Volcano Hazards Program (VHP) and its affiliated partners in the Consortium of U.S. Volcano Observatories (CUSVO) (http://www.cusvo.org).
Roughly half of the Nation's 169 young volcanoes are dangerous because of the manner in which they erupt and the communities within their reach. Currently, many of these volcanoes have insufficient monitoring systems (for example, seismometers and continuous GPS [Global Positioning System]), and others have outdated equipment. The NVEWS plan ensures that the most hazardous volcanoes would be properly monitored well in advance of the onset of activity, making it possible for scientists to improve the timeliness and accuracy of hazard forecasts and for citizens to take proper and timely action to reduce risk.
In addition, the NVEWS plan seeks to improve a number of capabilities of the US volcanology community through the following elements: 1) Increased partnerships with local governments and emergency responders, 2) grants to universities and other groups for cooperative research to advance volcano science, monitoring technologies, and mitigation strategies, 3) added staffing and automation to improve 24/7 monitoring of volcanoes, and 4) computer systems to distribute data to scientists, responding agencies, and the public, and to unify the systems currently used to monitor US volcanoes.
More information can be found in the documents listed here
Current Volcano Alert Level: NORMAL
Current Aviation Color Code: GREEN
Yellowstone Map and current information here
ScienceDaily (Dec. 14, 2009) - The most detailed seismic images yet published of the plumbing that feeds the Yellowstone supervolcano shows a plume of hot and molten rock rising at an angle from the northwest at a depth of at least 410 miles, contradicting claims that there is no deep plume, only shallow hot rock moving like slowly boiling soup.
The Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research recently (20 November 2009) published a special volume on the track of the Yellowstone Hot Spot.
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There is a recurring harmonic pattern that occurs that is unlike a regular shake pattern. It is seen at regular intercvals (like it might be man-inducded?).
By Andrea Thompson, LiveScience Staff Writer: 08 November 2007 02:00 pm ET
Yellowstone's ancient volcanic floor has been rising since mid-2004 because a blob of molten rock the size of Los Angeles infiltrated the system 6 miles beneath the surface, scientists say, but there is no risk of an eruption.
Yellowstone National Park is the site of North America's largest volcanic field, which is produced by a hotspot, or gigantic plume of hot, molten rock, that begins at least 400 miles (643 kilometers) beneath Earth's surface and rises to 30 miles (48 kilometers) underground, where it widens to about 300 miles across.
Updates are compiled for the previous month and posted in the first week of the new month.
PERSPECTIVE ON THE ENORMITY OF YELLOWSTONE
To help readers understand the implications of what is taking place, we first show the enormity of Yellowstone National ""PARK" with stats from the US National Park Service:
· Yellowstone was the world's first National Park
· A designated World Heritage Site and designated Biosphere Reserve
· 3,472 square miles or 8,987 square km
· 2,221,766 acres or 898,317 hectares
· 63 air miles north to south (102 km)
· 54 air miles east to west 87 km)
· 96 % in Wyoming
· 3 % in Montana
· 1 % in Idaho
· Highest Point: 11,358 ft / 3,462 m (Eagle Peak)
· Lowest Point: 5,282 ft / 1,610 m (Reese Creek)
· Larger than Rhode Island and Delaware combined
· About one-quarter the size of Switzerland and about 65% the size of Montenegro
· Approximately 5% of park is covered by water; 15% is grassland; and 80% is forest
· Precipitation ranges from 10 inches (26 cm) at the north boundary to 80 inches (205 cm) in the southwest corner
· Temperatures (average) at Mammoth: January: 9° F/-13 C in July: 80° F/27 C
· Records: High: 99°F/37 C, 2002 (Mammoth) Low Temp: -66° F/-54 C (West Entrance, Riverside Station 1933)
The Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research recently (20 November 2009) published a special volume on the track of the Yellowstone Hot Spot
Monday, February 2, 2009 10:52 MST (Monday, February 2, 2009 17:52 UTC)
Seismicity Summary: As of January 8, 2009, the seismic activity has markedly decreased. Beginning Dec 26, 2008, the second largest earthquake swarm of Yellowstone's recorded seismic history occurred beneath the north end of Yellowstone Lake. The swarm continued into Jan. 2009, but subsided rather quickly in activity on January 5. The Lake swarm consisted of 813 well-located earthquakes with magnitudes ranging from -0.8 to 3.9. This sequence contained 19 earthquakes of M>3.0 as well as 141 events of 2<M<2.9. Several of the M>3 swarm events were felt throughout Yellowstone National Park and surrounding area. For the entire month of January, 2009 315 earthquakes were located with 205 of these events associated with the Yellowstone Lake swarm, the largest being M 3.5 on January 2 at 11:32 AM MST. There have not been any reports of damage from the Yellowstone Lake swarm. Note that the largest earthquake swarm recorded in Yellowstone began in the autumn of 1985 on the west side of the caldera and east of West Yellowstone MT. It lasted for ~4 months and contained earthquakes of M>4.
In Jan. 9 to Jan 12, a secondary swarm of 35 earthquakes occurred near the northeast edge of the Yellowstone caldera, about 10 miles (16 km) NNE of the north end of the Yellowstone Lake swarm. This sequence included events with magnitudes of 0.4 to 3.3.
For comparison, Yellowstone commonly experiences 1,000 to 3,000 earthquakes per year and there have been more than 32,000 well-recorded earthquakes in Yellowstone from 1973 to 2009. Earthquakes that are closely spaced in time and area are termed swarms and are a common mode of seismic energy release in the Yellowstone caldera. From 1984 to 2008 there were 80 swarms documented in Yellowstone. The last notable swarm occurred in 2004.
Earthquake activity in the Yellowstone was elevated during the Yellowstone Lake swarm but has returned to relatively normal background levels.
Yellowstone Volcano Observatory partners continue to analyze the seismic and ground deformation data from the Yellowstone Lake swarm and are evaluating any changes to the thermal areas located near the epicenters. If any changes are to be verified, they are quite small.
Ground Deformation Summary: Through January 2009, continuous GPS data show that much of the Yellowstone caldera continued moving upward, though at a lower rate than the past several years. The nearest GPS station to the swarm, at Lake Jct., about 2 km from the swarm has experienced ground uplift over the past 55 months of about ~18 cm (A plot of the vertical and horizontal ground motions at the Lake GPS station can be found at: http://pboweb.unavco.org/shared/scripts/stations/?checkkey=LKWY&sec=timeseries_plots×eries=raw). The WLWY station has undergone ~21 cm of uplift over the same time period. These and all other Yellowstone GPS data are being analyzed for unusual properties that may be associated with the Yellowstone Lake swarm. The general uplift of the Yellowstone caldera is of scientific importance and will continue to be monitored closely by YVO staff.
An article on the current uplift episode at Yellowstone and discussion of long-term ground deformation at Yellowstone and elsewhere can be found at: http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/yvo/publications/2007/upsanddowns.php.
Small Earthquake Swarm on 9 January 2009 near northeast corner of Yellowstone Caldera
A currently modest swarm of earthquakes began in the northeast corner of the Yellowstone Caldera, about 10 miles (16 km) NNE of the north end of the Yellowstone Lake swarm that was active in late December and early January. As of 1930 MST, 10 earthquakes had been located by the University of Utah Seismograph Stations, the largest with M= 3.3 and two other events with M >2.0. Located depths are between 2 and 4 km.
Yellowstone Volcano Observatory staff and collaborators are analyzing the data from this and from the earlier Yellowstone Lake swarm and are checking for any changes to the thermal areas located near the epicenters. We will provide further information as it becomes available.
Yellowstone Lake Earthquake Swarm Summary as of 8 January 2009
Image 1. Yellowstone Lake showing location and times of the recent earthquakes from Dec. 27, 2008 (blue) to Jan. 8, 2009 (red). The M 3.0 and greater earthquakes are shown as stars, the smaller earthquakes are shown as circles. During the swarm, the earthquake locations appear to have moved north.
Yellowstone seismicity increased significantly in December 2008 due to an energetic earthquake swarm that commenced on December 26. This swarm, a sequence of earthquakes clustered in space and time, is occurring beneath the northern part of Yellowstone Lake in Yellowstone National Park. As of this writing, the largest of these earthquakes was a magnitude 3.9 at 10:15 pm MST on Dec. 27. Through 5:00 pm MST on Dec. 31, the sequence had included 12 events of magnitude 3.0 to 3.9 and approximately 20 of magnitude 2.5 to 2.9, with a total of at least 400 events large enough to be located (magnitude ~1 or larger). National Park Service (NPS) employees and visitors have reported feeling the largest of these earthquakes in the area around Yellowstone Lake and at Old Faithful and Grant Village.
The hypocenters of the swarm events cluster along a north-south-trending zone that is about 7 km long. The vast majority of the focal depths are shallower than 5 km. It is not possible to identify a causative fault of other feature without further analysis.
Analysts are currently processing the backlog of seismic data from these events. The current analyst-processed catalog is believed to include all events of magnitude 2.5 and greater through Dec 31 at 5 pm MST, but hundreds of earthquakes remain to be processed. The total of more than 400 locatable events is based on automatically-determined locations and magnitudes for the swarm events.
The December 2008 earthquake sequence is the most intense in this area for some years. No damage has been reported within Yellowstone National Park, nor would any be expected from earthquakes of this size. The swarm is in a region of historical earthquake activity and is close to areas of Yellowstone famous hydrothermal activity. Similar earthquake swarms have occurred in the past in Yellowstone without triggering steam explosions or volcanic activity. Nevertheless, there is some potential for hydrothermal explosions and earthquakes may continue or increase in magnitude. There is a much lower potential for related volcanic activity.
The National Park Service in Yellowstone has been kept fully informed of the ongoing seismic activity via electronic means and by phone contacts with the University of Utah and the U.S. Geological Survey USGS). The Wyoming Office of Homeland Security is reviewing Earthquake Response Plans and monitoring seismic activity.
Earthquakes are a common occurrence in the Yellowstone National Park area, an active volcanic-tectonic area averaging 1,000 to 2,000 earthquakes a year. Yellowstone's 10,000 geysers and hot springs are the result of this geologic activity. A summary of Yellowstone's volcanic history is available on the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory web site (listed below).
The University of Utah operates a seismic network in Yellowstone National Park in conjunction with the National Park Service and the U.S. Geological Survey. These three institutions are partners in the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory. Seismic data from Yellowstone are transmitted to the University in real-time by radio and satellite links from a network of 28 seismographs in the Yellowstone area and are available on the web.
Seismologists continue to monitor and analyze data from this swarm of earthquakes and provide updates to the NPS and USGS and to the public via the following web pages. Information on U.S. earthquake activity including Yellowstone can be viewed at the U.S. Geological Survey web site: http://earthquake.usgs.gov/eqcenter/recenteqsus/.
Information on earthquakes can also be viewed at the University of Utah Seismograph Stations web site: http://www.seis.utah.edu/.
Seismographic recordings from Yellowstone seismograph stations can be viewed online at: http://www.quake.utah.edu/helicorder/heli/yellowstone/index.html.
An article on earthquake swarms at Yellowstone is available at the following: http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/yvo/publications/2004/apr04swarm.php
Geologic information, maps, and monitoring information for Yellowstone can be found on the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory web site at: http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/yvo/.
Ground Deformation Summary:
Through December 2008, continuous GPS data show that much of the Yellowstone caldera continued moving upward, though at a lower rate than the past few years. The maximum measured ground uplift over the past 53 months is ~23 cm at the White Lake GPS station, north of Fishing Bridge. An example can be found at: http://pboweb.unavco.org/shared/scripts/stations/?checkkey=WLWY&sec=timeseries_plots×eries=raw.
The general uplift of the Yellowstone caldera is scientifically important
and will continue to be monitored and studied closely by YVO staff. A discussion
of the current uplift episode at Yellowstone and long-term ground deformation
at Yellowstone and elsewhere can be found at: http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/yvo/publications/2007/upsanddowns.php.
Earthquake Magnitude ranging from barely felt into the 3.6 mag. range have been swarming since Dec. 26, 2008. On Jan. 1, 2009 there have been 241 earthquakes registering in this swarm at 44 degress North, 110 degrees West. For an updated list of this activity, click here.
On Going Activity/Unrest: http://www.volcano.si.edu/reports/usgs/
Current Volcano Alert Level: NORMAL
Current Aviation Color Code: GREEN
Activity Update: All volcanoes in the Cascade Range are at normal levels of background seismicity. These include Mount Baker, Glacier Peak, Mount Rainier, Mount St. Helens, and Mount Adams in Washington State; Mount Hood, Mount Jefferson, Three Sisters, Newberry Volcano, and Crater Lake, in Oregon; and Medicine Lake volcano, Mount Shasta, and Lassen Peak in northern California.
Mount St. Helens has been at Volcano Alert Level NORMAL (Aviation Color Code GREEN) since July 10, 2008.
For a webcam view of the volcano: http://www.fs.fed.us/gpnf/volcanocams/msh/
Mount St. Helens Eruption Highlights 2004 - Present
A Volcano Rekindled: The Renewed Eruption of Mount St. Helens, 2004-2006
Mount St. Helens VolcanoCam
November 22, 2006
The current eruption of Washington State's Mount St. Helens, which began about two years ago, has been marked by a series of weak, shallow earthquakes, or "drumbeats," that occur every couple of minutes, a new study says. The "slip/stick" motion of the rocky "plug" being pushed out of the volcano is causing those rhythmic quakes, according to scientists from the Cascades Volcano Observatory in Vancouver, Washington
of Long Valley Caldera and Mono-Inyo Craters Volcanic Chain, California
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