The evolution of volcanic plume morphology in short-lived eruptions

K. N. Chojnicki, Amanda B Clarke, Jeremy C Phillips, R. J. Adrian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
258 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The details of volcanic plume source conditions or internal structure cannot readily be revealed by simple visual images or other existing remote imaging techniques. For example, one predominant observable quantity, the spreading rate in steady or quasi-steady volcanic plumes, is independent of source buoyancy flux. However, observable morphological features of short-duration unsteady plumes appear to be strongly controlled by volcanic source conditions, as inferred from our recent work. Here we present a new technique for using simple morphological evolution to extract the temporal evolution of source conditions of short-lived unsteady eruptions. In particular, using examples from Stromboli (Italy) and Santiaguito (Guatemala) volcanoes, we illustrate simple morphologic indicators of (1) increasing injection rate during the early phase of an eruption; (2) onset of source injection decline and (3) the timing of source injection cessation. Combined, these observations indicate changes in eruption discharge rate and injection duration, and may assist in estimating total mass erupted for a given event. In addition, we show how morphology may provide clues about the vertical mass distribution in these plumes, which may be important for predicting ash dispersal patterns.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)707-710
Number of pages4
JournalGeology
Volume43
Issue number8
Early online date10 Jul 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2015

Keywords

  • explosive eruptions
  • volcanic plume dynamics
  • unsteady eruption dynamics
  • impulsive plumes

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