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Copahue volcano
stratovolcano 2997 m / 9,833 ft
Chile/Argentina, -37.85°S / -71.17°W
Current status: minor activity or eruption warning (3 out of 5)
Copahue webcams / live data
Copahue volcano videos
Copahue volcano books
Copahue volcano eruptions:
2015-16, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2001(?), 2000, 1992, 1961, 1937, 1867(?), 1759(?), 1750
Typical eruption style:
explosive
Last earthquakes nearby
Latest satellite images

Copahue volcano news & activity updates

Copahue volcano raised to red alert - more explosions and incandescence evidence presence of fresh magma

Sunday Dec 23, 2012 06:55 AM | BY: T

Terra/MODIS image of the Copahue eruption, taken at 14:45 UT on December 22, 2012 (NASA earth observatory)
Terra/MODIS image of the Copahue eruption, taken at 14:45 UT on December 22, 2012 (NASA earth observatory)
At 21:43 local time Saturday, a strong harmonic tremor signal occurred with the same dominant frequency 1.36 Hz and an intermediate intensity (2x stronger than the one during earlier records). Immediately after this episode that lasted about 5 minutes there were 2 explosions with loud noises heard.
The camera installed around the volcano, allowed to observe glow reflected in the clouds, and an area of ​​it in the active crater. The raise in tremor and the explosions also correlated with an increase of the gas column.
The eruptions of Copahue during recorded history are mostly small to moderate in size. One likely scenario are frequent phreatic or phreatomagmatic (generated by interaction of magma and water) explosions. Under these conditions, the main danger is from the fallout of pyroclastic material (ash fall and ballistic impacts in proximal areas). Larger explosions could generate pyroclastic surges and lahars.
Hazards:
The proximal hazard area (15km radius) that can be affected by lava and / or lahars do not include populated areas. In more vigorous eruptions with lower probability of occurrence, pyroclastic flows could reach distances of up to 25 km. The area likely to be affected by ashfall with thicknesses greater than 1 cm is located primarily to the east of the volcano.

Conclusion
Changes in the characteristics of the seismic signal and observation of glow in the crater, indicating the presence of a magma body near the surface, which could generate lava flows down the slopes of the volcano and / or present strombolian activity. The intensity of seismic signals suggest that the eruption in progress is small and has characteristics of an open conduit. However, it cannot be ruled out that the activity evolves into a major eruption. Special attention is recommended in a 15km radius around the active crater and on the banks of the rivers draining away from the volcano because of the possibility of occurrence of lahars.
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Links / Sources:
Previous news
Saturday, Dec 22, 2012
According to SERNAGEOMIN, the eruption is most likely a small phreatic event. This is a abbreviated translation of the latest press release: ... [more]
An initial ash plume from Copahue spreading to the ENE, image from NOAA
Saturday, Dec 22, 2012
A Satellite image taken on 14:00 on 22 November shows a large ash plume drifting 110 KM SE from Copahue volcano. Ash fall has been reported in Loncopue village in Argentina, 50 KM SE of the volcano. The volcano's last confirmed eruption was in 2000, although one report stated eruptions in 2001 as well. ... [more]
Friday, Sep 28, 2012
Intense steaming can be observed from the El Agrio crater lake as the following recent video shows: ... [more]

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