Agung volcano news & activity updates:
Gunung Agung volcano (Bali, Indonesia): airports closed as eruption produces ash column up to 2000 m and nighttime glow
Friday Jun 29, 2018 09:39 AM |
Red lava glow is reflected in the thick smoke emanating from Mount Agung, as seen from Datah village in Karangasem, Bali, on June 29. (Antara/Nyoman Budhiana)
A small plume of mainly white steam along with some ash is rising and growing from Mt Agung’s summit on the morning of 28 June 2018 (webcam image: Magma Indonesia)
Seismograms of VSI's TMKS Mt Agung station from about midnight 28 June to 15h00 on 29 June 2018 (local time), showing the increased tremors starting in the afternoon on 28 June and lasting until early this morning. (Magma Indonesia / VSI)
Mt Agung has started another eruptive phase on Thursday 28 June 2018, producing a tall ash plume which reflected a strong glow during the night. Initially only some flights were cancelled but as the eruption persisted Bali’s international airport in Denpasar is now temporarily closed as well as two regional airports in East Java. Since its catastrophic eruption in 1963 the volcano first showed signs of awakening in mid August 2017, putting the area on alert and increased observation up to now.
Thermal anomalies reflecting Agung volcano’s radiative power recorded over the past year, showing that the current one is by far the largest (note logarithmic scale) (image: MIROVA)
An official of the Volcanology and Geological Disaster Agency, Devy Kamil Syahbana, stated that Agung volcano had been emanating white smoke all morning and started to intermittently spew out volcanic material since 10h30 AM local time, causing volcanic ash to rain in areas west and southwest of the volcano. Infrequent tremors were felt throughout the afternoon and increased as seismicity picked up after 16h00 when the eruption of volcanic gasses and ash became continuous, creating a stable eruption plume some 1500 – 2000 m high above the volcano’s summit. As night fell, a strong red glow was reflected in the thick clouds of white steam, suggesting the presence of fresh lava in the volcano’s summit crater. Although a tall eruption plume was still visible on Friday morning, 29 June 2018, the volcano’s seismogram shows that increased continuous tremors subdued again after 04h30 AM.
The volcano’s alert level remains at number three, moderate, and there is a 4 km exclusion zone around the volcano. Tourists have been urged to stay away from the volcano and locals have been told to prepare their face masks in the case of a full-scale eruption. The current eruption together with the 2 explosions that occurred in mid June ( see our update on these events here) suggest that pressure is building inside Agung volcano. This is also indicated by the high thermal anomaly registered by MIROVA from the latest satellite data, with 820 MW the highest volcanic radiative power measured from Mt Agung since the volcano re-awakened in the second half of 2017.
From 10 August 2017 volcanic earthquakes were registered around Mt Agung which increased in intensity and frequency so that in September 2017 the volcano’s alert level was raised to the highest status, four, and about 122 500 people were evacuated as a 12 km exclusion zone was declared around the volcano. A large scale event was feared when seismicity peaked at the end of September, with 844 volcanic earthquakes on 25 September, but no eruption occurred and seismicity dropped again by the end of October, leading to lowering of the alert level from 4 to 3. A short eruptive phase finally started with a phreatic explosion on 21 November 2017, followed by small magmatic eruption that persisted from 25 to 29 November. So far in 2018, Agung volcano only had a few explosions in mid January and mid June.
Mt Agung had been dormant since its last major eruption in March 1963 created catastrophic pyroclastic flows that took about 1500 lives. In the subsequent months about 400 people were killed by deadly lahars and more pyroclastic flows, placing this event in the top 10 of deadliest volcanic eruptions of the 20th century. Since 1963 the population on Bali has almost doubled and the island has become a very popular tourist destination, rendering Mt Agung one of the potentially most dangerous volcanoes.
Friday, Jun 29, 2018
Thursday, Jun 28, 2018
Thursday, Jun 28, 2018
Wednesday, Jun 27, 2018
Friday, Jun 15, 2018
Hazard map of Agung volcano (Sep 2017)
Hazard map of Agung volcano (PVMBG)