GVP Weekly Volcanic Activity Report for June 8-14, 2011: Calming down in Indonesia and Vanuatu
I write the Eruptions blog on Big Think. I've been mesmerized with volcanoes (and geology) all my life. It helps that part of my family comes from the shadow of Nevado del Ruiz in Colombia, where I could see first hand the deadly effects of volcanic eruptions. Since then, I've taken a bit of a winding path to become a volcanologist. I started as a history major at Williams College, almost went into radio, but ended up migrating to geology, including an undergraduate thesis on Vinalhaven Island, Maine. I followed this up by changing coast to get my Ph.D. from Oregon State University. Then I ran a MC-ICP-MS lab at University of Washington for a spell (and wrote for an indie rock website). I spent three years as a postdoctoral scholar at University of California - Davis studying the inner workings of magmatic systems. I am now an assistant professor at Denison University and have projects in New Zealand, Chile and Oregon.
I am fascinated by volcanoes, their eruptions and how those eruptions interact with the people who live around the volcanoes. I started this blog after getting frustrated with the news reports of volcanic eruptions. Most of them get the information wrong and/or are just sensationalistic. I will try to summarize eruptions as they occur, translate some of the volcanic processes that are happening and comment on the reports themselves.
And no matter what people tell you, I definitely do not have a cat named Tephra. (OK, I do).
You can find out more about my research by visiting my website. If you have any comments, questions or information, feel free to contact me at eruptionsblog at gmail dot com.
In case you missed some of the volcanic activity that wasn't in Chile or Eritrea (I know I did), here is the (slightly late from me) Global Volcanism Program Weekly Volcanic Activity Report. As usual, it is brought to us by the folks at the Smithsonian Institute and the USGS, all compiled by Sally Kuhn Sennert.
Some highlights include:
Indonesia: We had been concerned about activity - especially carbon dioxide emissions - at the Dieng Volcanic Complex. It appears that the CO2 release has gone down over the last few weeks - combining that with a sharp drop in steam emissions and seismicity, the alert status at the Dieng was lowered to Level 2 (of 4). Indonesia also saw some small explosions at the Tengger Caldera (Bromo) over the past week as well.
Vanuatu: Activity was also lower at Yasur, where only small strombolian explosions occurred after a few weeks of heightened activity. The alert status there was also lowered to Level 2 (of 4). You might have missed this NASA MODIS image of the activity in Vanuatu, including Yasur and nearby Ambrym.
Russia: If anything, the Kamchatka Peninsula is like the New York Yankees of volcanic arcs - anything less than a large eruption isn't success. Karymsky, Shiveluch, Kizimen (and more on the KVERT update) keep chugging along, producing plumes that reach 4-6 km (13,000 to 20,000 feet) and seeing domes grow in the summit craters. Almost anywhere else in the world, activity like this would be front page news. In Kamchatka, it is barely a page filler.
Top left: An undated image of Bromo (steaming crater in foreground) and Semeru (background) in the Tengger Caldera, Indonesia
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