El Misti volcano, Peru: earthquake swarms as signs of gradual reawakening
Wednesday Aug 29, 2012 12:05 PM | BY: T
El Misti volcano is showing signs of unrest, according to a recent article in the Peruvian press. Geologists from the Geophysical Institute of Peru (IGP) detected a higher number than usual of small earthquakes under the volcano located 17 km outside the city of Arequipa.
The current seismic swarm the strongest in more than 5 years. Engineer Orlando Macedo told El Comercio that 224 earthquakes were registered at El Misti during the past week. The swarm contained 143 volcano tectonic earthquakes, caused by fracturing of rocks inside the volcano due to sudden changes in pressure and temperature.
Despite this recent increase in activity, which indicates that the volcano is slowly reawakening and "no longer dormant", no eruption is likely imminent. For an eruption to happen, Macedo said, El Misti would have to experience even more and continued earthquake swarms as well as volcanic tremor, signs of magma movements.
The volcano last erupted sometime between 1450 and 1470 and is one of the country's largest and most active.
Links / Sources: