Puyehue-Cordón Caulle ash makes it to Buenos Aires and Paraguay
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.
The eruption that started Saturday at Puyehue-Cordón Caulle along the Chilean-Argentine border is still going - and still causing problems for people living in the zone where ash and pumice (see below) is falling. The plume itself is spreading to the north and east of the volcano as you can see in an image posted on the NASA Earth Observatory In fact, cities as far afield as Buenos Aires are feeling the effects of the ash, with flight delays and diversions in and out of the major international airport in that city, along with some flights in and out of Paraguay. The ash may even reach Brazil later in the week. These problems may not be short-lived as SERNAGEOMIN geologists say the eruption could last days to weeks. The mayor of Bariloche, one of the cities along the border most hit by the ash, has been telling residents that it is best to stay at home to avoid the ash hazard. The biggest issues for the residents will be keeping water supplies safe from the ash, although the winds are turning in favor of Bariloche for the time being. However, evacuations are continuing in areas near the volcano.
Pumice fall from Puyehue-Cordón Cauile
It appears that the eruption is continuing to wane some (spanish) and SERNAGEOMIN director Enrique Valdivieso says lava flows (spanish) from Puyehue-Cordon Caulle shouldn't be ruled out (although the real hazard is still the heavy ash fall). The number of earthquakes and amount of tremor at the volcano have been in decline as well, but they are still keeping the volcano at Red Level 6 (moderate eruption). The Atlantic posted probably one of the best galleries I've seen for the eruption so far, capturing both the ash plume and the heavy ash fall related to the volcano. Top left: The ash plume from Puyehue-Cordón Caulle spreading across South America on June 7, 2011.
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