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Two years on at Chaitén 2 May 2010

Posted by admin in Chaitén, Chile, eruptions, volcanoes.
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View of Chaitén caldera and lava dome before the May 2008 eruption, © Eric Manríquez
View of Chaitén caldera and lava dome before the May 2008 eruption (© Eric Manríquez).

The eruption of Chaitén volcano in southern Chile began two years ago today, on 2 May 2008. Since that date eruptive activity at the volcano has continued uninterrupted: the intensity has varied, but the activity has never ceased.

View from May 2009 of the dome complex (courtesy Mr Javier Romero, Vialidad MOP, Puerto Montt)
View from May 2009 of the Chaitén dome complex (courtesy Mr Javier Romero, Vialidad MOP, Puerto Montt).

During the coming week, to mark the second anniversary of Chaitén’s awakening, there’ll be a series of posts here at the Volcanism Blog looking at various aspects – volcanological, social, economic and environmental – of this remarkable and endlessly fascinating eruption.

Secuencia de imagenes del volcan Chaiten correspondientes al mes de Marzo del 2010 (SERNAGEOMIN)
Sequence of images of the Chaitén lava dome during March 2010 (SERNAGEOMIN).

[The first illustration above, showing Chaitén before the eruption, was originally published here in May 2008; the second is from SERNAGEOMIN bulletin no. 91, translated here in May 2009; and the third is from the March 2010 bulletin (PDF) issued by SERNAGEOMIN which we will be reporting here very shortly.]

UPDATE. Family problems of a serious nature mean I’ve been unable to provide the Chaitén coverage promised in this post – please accept my sincere apologies. I will catch up with Chaitén, and with much else, when I am able to do so.

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

The Volcanism Blog


1. Guillermo - 3 May 2010

At the ‘Erupción del Volcán Chaitén’ site of Werner Luis, there is a document with an excellent summary of the eruption process of Chaitén made by the expert Jorge Eduardo Romero Moyano. i recommend it for all those are a bit lost with this intrincated-fascinating-interesting-surprising-devastating eruption.

2. admin - 3 May 2010

Yes, I’ve been working my way through that document, which is certainly very helpful.

Guillermo, do you (or does anyone else) know the background of Jorge Eduardo Romero Moyano? I haven’t been able to find anything out about his profession or affiliations, and he doesn’t give any information about himself in his article.

3. Miguel V. - 3 May 2010

Thanks a lot for your continuing coverage of this event! I’ll wait for your articles

4. Alan Sullivan - 3 May 2010

Glad to see you doing this. I have found information to be very scarce the last few months. It didn’t help that the webcam site was moved without notice. There is never seismic data to be seen any more. SERNAGROMIN’s announcement page went idle for months. Very frustrating. I hope you have been able to gather some info on current dome dimensions and growth.

5. ophrys - 3 May 2010

About Jorge Eduardo Romero Moyano, I found this page (Spanish)


6. Guillermo - 3 May 2010

I had the same problem, but I found this:

He also with other scientists made a serious analysis of the M8.8 quake that hit Chile 27/02 that spreaded the fear (well based) of a 7.5 quake at central Chile, but that’s another story.

7. Guillermo - 3 May 2010

Err, looking his profile looks like it is not a professional (16 years- amateur), but he has several participations in many geo articles.

8. admin - 4 May 2010

Ophrys and Guillermo, thanks for tracking down that information. He looks to be a pretty impressive amateur…

9. Jorge Eduardo Romero Moyano - 19 June 2010

Thank you so much for your commentaries. I’m the author of this article, and really i recived from many people good evaluations,also from the discoverer of this volcano, Mr Oscar Gonzales-Ferran, an enormous volcanologist. If you want more information about my article, send to me your questions to jorge_eduardorm@hotmail.com.

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