When I recently noticed earthquakes listed day after day for the Halmahera region (northeastern part of Indonesia) I got my typical ‘how-come?’ feeling. So I went looking for a reason, and I read that an earthquake swarm had begun in the Jailolo region on Sept. 27, 2017. Although it has diminished by now, there are still quakes coming. Continue Reading
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A volcano erupting in Indonesia is not something that would normally cause too great a flurry, so what is the hype with Gunung Agung? Naturally, people remember well its last eruption which lasted almost a year, was very explosive and, sadly, claimed ~2000 lives. Additionally, this time after official reports about unrest began, there were Continue Reading
Ulawun stratovolcano is a very steep and 2334 m-high mountain on the central-north coast of New Britain, P.N.G. Bamus stands 2248 m tall beside him, and both have a problem – they’re growing too high. Both Ulawun and Bamus are more than 400 m taller than all other stratovolcanoes in the 1000-km-long Bismarck Volcanic Arc. Given existing faults and scarps of historical events, concerns are that flank failure is in the cards for both volcanoes. Locally the three volcanoes Ulawun, Bamus (to the SW of U.) and Likuruanga (to the NE of U.) are better known as the “Father group”: After myths told by the Nakanai people these three are named Father, South Son and North Son. Continue Reading
A maar is a hole in the ground, of volcanic origin… what else?… caused by interaction with water… That was about all I knew about maars when I prepared for this year’s holiday, in the German Eifel maars area (Vulkaneifel, Rheinland-Pfalz district). I did not expect to find a great lot of evidence for former volcanic activity. Probably all covered by sediments or eroded, mined away or grown over – that’s what I thought. Mind you, it was not the famous Laacher See caldera I visited which had produced a VEI 6 eruption some 13 000 years ago. Continue Reading
Sometimes I browse satellite images on WorldView to see what “my” volcanoes are up to. The other day I noticed a thermal anomaly on “Medvezhia”, Iturup Island, Kuriles. So I went back to look at every day of May and found that a red spot had shown on eight days in May, sometimes two spots, practically on most days the mountain wasn’t covered in thick clouds. Could that be a glowing hot lava dome, degassing, with an eruption to come, or a small one going on already? Continue Reading