Akan volcano

Updated: Aug 10, 2022 17:41 GMT - Refresh
caldera 1499 m / 4,918 ft
Hokkaido (Japan), 43.38°N / 144.01°E
Current status: normal or dormant (1 out of 5)
Last update: 13 Dec 2021 (Smithsonian / USGS Weekly Volcanic Activity Report)

Akan volcano (阿寒岳, Akan-dake) is one of Hokkaido's most active volcanoes. Akan consists of a large 24 x 13 km diameter caldera and a group of younger partly Holocene andesite cones. The highest point of the complex is the Mount Meakan (1499 m) stratovolcano.
The frequent historic eruptions occurred all from the Me-Akan group, east of Lake Akan. Me-Akan volcano (雌阿寒岳 Meakan-dake) consists of 9 overlapping cones. Its summit has 3 craters.
Me-Akan has had at least 17 small phreatic eruptions since the beginning of the 19th century and from geologic studies it is known that there were at least 4 major magmatic eruptions with pyroclastic flows have occurred in prehistoric time during the past 10,000 years.

Lake Akan is part of the Akan National Park. It is known for a rare green algae (marimo) which can grow to about the size of a soccer ball. The only town around the lake is the resort of Akankohan known for its hot springs and the "bokke", bubbling mud pools found at the lakeshore.

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Typical eruption style: explosive
Akan volcano eruptions: 2008, 2006, 1988, 1966, 1965, 1964, 1962, 1960, 1959, 1958, 1957, 1956, 1955, 1954, 1951(?)-52, 1927 (?), 1808 (?), 1800
Lastest nearby earthquakes: No recent earthquakes

Background

The Akan caldera is located immediately SW of Kutcharo caldera and has an elonogated, irregular shape due to several caldera-forming explosive eruptions between the early and mid Pleistocene.
Growth of 3 post-caldera stratovolcanoes, 3 at the SW end of the caldera and the other at the NE side, has reduced the size of the caldera lake. The conical O-Akan volcano was frequently active during the Holocene. The 1-km-wide Nakamachineshiri crater of Me-Akan volcano was formed during a major pumice-and-scoria eruption about 13,500 years ago.

Akan Photos

View over the crater of Mt Ontake volcano on Suwanose-jima; Nakano-jima island in the background to the NE. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View over the crater of Mt Ontake volcano on Suwanose-jima; Nakano-jima island in the background to the NE. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View of Mt Ontake stratovolcano of Nakano-jima volcano, Suwanose-jima's neighbor to the northeast. A gas plume can be seen rising from the summit crater, suggesting the volcano is active. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View of Mt Ontake stratovolcano of Nakano-jima volcano, Suwanose-jima's neighbor to the northeast. A gas plume can be seen rising from the summit crater, suggesting the v...
 


2008 eruption
Tremor was recorded on 17 November 2008. A small ash eruption occurred on 18 November, and was later detected by a fresh deposit of ash on snow in up to 400 m distance from the Ponmachineshiri crater. Another ash eruption occurred on 28 November, producing a small ash plume reaching 2 km altitude.
(Source: Smithsonian / GVP monthly reports)

2006 eruption
A small eruption occurred from a vent on the NE flank of Meakan on 21 March 2006. Ashfall was observed 10 km SE of the volcano.

1998 eruption
A small ash eruption occurred from Meakan volcano on 9 November 1998.

1996 eruption
A small phreatic eruption occurred on 21 November 1996.

See also: Sentinel hub | Landsat 8 | NASA FIRMS
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