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Continuing high level of activity at Reventador 20 October 2009

Posted by admin in activity reports, Ecuador, Reventador.
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Reventador volcano, 19 October 2009 (Instituto Geofisico, Ecuador)
Reventador, looking towards the eastern flank. Picture taken during the overflight of 19 October 2009 (Instituto Geofísico).

Activity at Reventador volcano ‘remains at a level considered to be high’, reports Ecuador’s Instituto Geofísico in the latest special bulletin, no. 6 of 19 October 2009 (PDF).

Swarms of long-period earthquakes interspersed by explosions have been recorded, with ‘the most energetic period beginning on 17 October at 23:26 (local time) and having a duration of approximately 10 hours’. The constant harmonic tremor signal during this period saturated Reventador’s seismic stations and was also recorded on the monitoring networks at Antisana volcano, which is approximately 50 km to the SSW, and Cayambe volcano, approximately 35 km to the NW.

Incandescence has been observed in the crater area and on the southern flank of the volcano, and local inhabitants have heard constant noises of roaring and explosions. A small grey-coloured eruption column (little ash content) was reported on the morning of 18 October. Thermal anomalies associated with the presence of lava and magmatic gases were registered on 19 October. Satellite ozone monitoring instruments registered a large quantity of sulphur dioxide emitted from the volcano during the end of last week.

On the morning of 19 October, Instituto Geofísico personnel undertook an overflight and were able to confirm that a lava dome is continuing to grow within the summit crater, and observed the presence of lava flows moving on both the south and the north flanks. The southern flow occupies the greater area and apparently divides into two branches. Small emissions columns were observed, without ash content but containing SO2 and of a blue colouring.

The Instituto Geofísico notes that the current activity ‘does not reach the high levels of energy released by the eruption of November 2002’.

For all our Reventador coverage: Reventador « The Volcanism Blog.

El volcán ecuatoriano Reventador mantiene una alta actividad y se redobla la vigilancia – EFE, 19 October 2009
La actividad del Reventador aumentaEl Comercio, 19 October 2009

Global Volcanism Program: Reventador – summary information for Reventador (1502-01=)
Instituto Geofísico – Geophysical Institute of Ecuador

The Volcanism Blog