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Kelud volcano
Stratovolcano 1731 m (5,679 ft)
East Java, Indonesia, -7.93°S / 112.31°E

Kelud webcams / live data
Kelud volcano eruptions:
1500(?), 1548, 1586 ((sub-)Plinian eruption?), 1641 (sub-Plininan eruption?), 1716, 1752, 1756(?), 1771, 1776, 1785, 1811, 1825, 1826, 1835, 1848, 1849(?), 1864, 1901, 1919, 1920, 1951, 1966, 1967, 1990, Oct-Nov 2007, 13 Feb 2014
Typical eruption style:
Explosive. Lava domes, pyroclastic flows. Presence of extensive crater lake at low elevation, generating destructive lahars.
Last earthquakes nearby

Kelut volcano (East Java, Indonesia): eruption update - ash plume drifting hundreds of km into the Indian Ocean

Friday Feb 14, 2014 07:33 AM | BY: T

The eruption column with intense volcanic lightning (@soranibrahim7, pic.twitter.com/11kGP8V0k4)
The eruption column with intense volcanic lightning (@soranibrahim7, pic.twitter.com/11kGP8V0k4)
Kelut's eruption plume on MTSAT (infrared channel) (CIMSS)
Kelut's eruption plume on MTSAT (infrared channel) (CIMSS)
Estimated extent and prediciton of the ash plume (VAAC Darwin)
Estimated extent and prediciton of the ash plume (VAAC Darwin)
SO2 plume from Kelut's eruption (ESA)
SO2 plume from Kelut's eruption (ESA)
Seismic activity during the days preceding the eruption on 13 Feb
Seismic activity during the days preceding the eruption on 13 Feb
The ash plume from last night's major eruption (possibly sub-plinian or even plinian in size) of Kelut is drifting rapidly to the west above the Indian Ocean. It is estimated to be as high as 55,000 ft (16 km) and extends several hundred kilometers in both N-S and W-E directions.
An important warning for aircraft using routes in this part of SE Asia was issued by VAAC Darwin. The eruption plume is well visible on satellite data.
According to VSI, the eruption started at 21:15 local time, following a rapid build-up in seismic activity during the same day. Monitoring staff were forced to evacuate their observation post as the eruption began to increase and a heavy rain of gravel-sized lapilli set in.
It is still unclear how large exactly the eruption was and what type exactly is was. An important question is whether fresh magma was involved (which seems rather likely) or whether it was phreatic (no new magma involved) and simply the result of a brutal release of pressure that had accumulated beneath the 2007 lava dome. In the first scenario, there would be a significant amount of fresh, viscous magma that has come to explosion. In this case, the eruption might still continue for a while, possibly with new violent explosions, until the portion of the new gas-rich magma that is able to erupt has been vented. It could then end with the emplacement of a new lava dome at the end of the eruption, corresponding to the last, relatively degassed magma that is able to reach the surface.
In the other case (no fresh magma involved) the eruption is likely to remain a single, short-lived event. Samples of the ash should help get a picture about the origin of the eruption.
Kelut is notorious among Indonesia's volcanoes for its violent, and often deadly explosive eruptions. One of the worst disasters occurred during the 1919 eruption, when the then very large crater lake drained and produced extensive mud-flows (lahars) that killed at least 5160 people. An eruption in 1586 is believed to have caused even more than 10,000 fatalities. The most recent prior explosive eruption in 1991 caused more than 50 deaths due to pyroclastic flows that swept down the flanks of the mountain. In contrast, the 2007 eruption was almost purely effusive and built a new lava dome, replacing the previous lake. This lava dome was with all likelihood completely destroyed during last night's explosion.
VSI raised the alert level to 4 (out of 4) and advises to stay at least 10 km away from the mountain. In particular, any valleys and low-lying areas should be avoided.
There are currently no reports about damage or fatalities.
Eruptive activity continued at least until the morning. Local newspapers reported heavy ash falls in areas up to 200 km distance and that the explosion sound was heard in Yogyakarta (170 km distance). The ash plume forced the closure of several important regional airports, including Yogyakarta, Solo, and Surabaya.
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Links / Sources:
Previous news
The eruption column of Kelut with lightning (photo: @RagaRikardhanu/ Twitter)
Thursday, Feb 13, 2014
It seems that a large eruption started at the volcano at 23:29 local time today. VAAC Darwin reports an ash plume to 45,000 ft (15 km) altitude is drifting 50 nautical miles to the west of the volcano. The alert status was raised to the highest level. ... [more]
Seismic activity at Kelut volcano during the past weeks (VSI)
Tuesday, Feb 11, 2014
VSI raised the alert status to the second highest level 3 (out of 4), "Siaga" (meaning eruption warning). In its latest report, VSI informs that an ongoing slight deformation, suggesting magma intrusion, has been detected since September and that a strong increase in seismic activity started on 7 February. A seismic swarm occurred with hypocenters between 1.5-3.5 km depth beneath the summit area. ... [more]
The new lava dome of Kelut volcano in Nov 2007
Sunday, Feb 02, 2014
The alert level of the volcano was raised today from 1 ("normal") to 2 ("Waspada", "watch") on a scale of 1-4. During the second half of 2014, a strong increase in seismic activity and a 5.5 deg temperature increase of the crater lake water had been detected. ... [more]
Thursday, Nov 15, 2007
CVGHM lowered the Alert Status of Kelut on 8 November from 4 to 3 (on a scale of 1-4), due to a decrease in seismicity and deformation. Temperatures of the crater lake were measured at 75 deg C on 6 Nov, and 150-210 deg C on the surface of the new lava dome. According to a local news article, a volcanologist reported that the lava dome was 250 m in diameter and 120 m above the crater lake surface. On 11 November, a plume rose to an altitude of 3.7 km (12,000 ft) a.s.l. and ashfall was reported in several areas.
CVGHM recommended that evacuees could return to their homes, but should stay clear of the mountain within a 3-km radius was restricted.
[more]
Thursday, Oct 18, 2007

The Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation (CVGHM) raised the altert status of Kelut volcano on 16 October from 3 to 4 (on a scale of 1-4). During 15-28 September, gas discharge from the crater lake increased and spread in a radius of 5 m. Inflation around the summit occurred during 13-16 October. On 16 October, the temperature in the crater lake increased to 37.8 degrees C.

... [more]

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