ALASKA VOLCANO OBSERVATORY WEEKLY UPDATE
U.S. Geological Survey
Friday, March 2, 2018, 2:12 PM AKST (Friday, March 2, 2018, 23:12 UTC)
52°49'20" N 169°56'42" W,
Summit Elevation 5676 ft (1730 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: WATCH
Current Aviation Color Code: ORANGE
Unrest continues at Cleveland Volcano. An explosion was detected in seismic and infrasound data this morning (14:57 UTC 2 Mar). This event generated a small volcanic cloud that drifted to the ENE at an altitude of approximately 15,000 ft asl. Prior to today's explosion, elevated surface temperatures were observed in satellite data several times over the past week (Feb. 28, Mar. 1, and Mar. 2). Other than during today's explosion, little activity has been observed in seismic and infrasound data over the past week.
Future explosive activity is likely, and may occur without warning. Previous explosions have produced hazardous conditions primarily near the summit crater, but occasionally they have been large enough to produce a drifting ash cloud.
Cleveland volcano is monitored with a limited real-time seismic network, which inhibits AVO's ability to detect precursory unrest that may lead to an explosive eruption. Rapid detection of an ash-producing eruption may be possible using a combination of seismic, infrasound, lightning, and satellite data.
Cleveland volcano forms the western portion of Chuginadak Island, a remote and uninhabited island in the east central Aleutians. The volcano is located about 75 km (45 mi) west of the community of Nikolski, and 1500 km (940 mi) southwest of Anchorage. The most recent significant period of eruption began in February, 2001 and produced 3 explosive events that generated ash clouds as high as 39,000 ft above sea level. The 2001 eruption also produced a lava flow and hot avalanche that reached the sea. Since then, Cleveland has been intermittently active producing small lava flows, often followed by explosions that generate small ash clouds generally below 20,000 ft above sea level. These explosions also launch debris onto the slopes of the cone producing hot pyroclastic avalanches and lahars that sometimes reach the coastline.
OTHER ALASKA VOLCANOES
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Michelle Coombs, Scientist-in-Charge, USGS
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Pavel Izbekov, Acting Coordinating Scientist, UAFGI
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The Alaska Volcano Observatory is a cooperative program of the U.S. Geological Survey, the University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute, and the Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys.