The ongoing eruption at Koryaksky (along with 5 other volcanoes in Kamchatka!)
For the first time in sixty years, six volcanoes are erupting out in Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula.
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.
Koryaksky (Koryak) in Russia
Yesterday in the USGS/SI update, I mentioned the current eruption going on at Koryaksky (a.k.a. Koryak). Today, the NASA Earth Observatory has some images of the plume from the Russian volcano heading out to the east over the Peninsula. The plume itself looks fairly diffuse and mostly whitish steam rather than laden with grey/brown ash. The last significant eruption from Koryaksky was a VEI 3 eruption in 1956-57 that produced ash fall and pyroclastic flows from the volcano.
One thing that is noted on the EO page is this snippet:
MODIS captured this plume days after reports of simultaneous activity at six Kamchatka volcanoes. Vostok Media described the simultaneous activity as rare, stating it was the first time that all six volcanoes showed concurrent unrest in 60 years.
Apparently it has been sixty years since six different volcanoes on the Kamchatka Peninsula were "erupting simultaneously". Right now, Shiveluch, Koryaksky, Bezymianny, Kliuchevskoi, Karymsky and Gorely (which was news to me) are all actively producing plumes and/or erupting. Throw in Sarychev Peak in the Kuril Islands, and you have a busy time in the far western Pacific arcs. Remember, the volcanoes might be located in a fairly remote and unpopulated area of Russia, but many flights from North America to the Far East/Asia come up over Kamchatka and the Kuril Islands, so any eruption can pose a serious threat to aviation.
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