Krakatau volcano (Indonesia): camera survives eruption - spectacular video of lava fountains

Sat, 11 Apr 2020, 10:41
10:41 AM | BY: T
Lava fountain at Anak Krakatau last night
Lava fountain at Anak Krakatau last night
Last night's violent paroxysm at Anak Krakatau ended abruptly around 08:00 morning local time. Fortunately, the webcam on the island survived the eruption although it seems it was hit by a projectile at 02:33 local time, when it suddenly tilted.
The following timelapse video shows the eruption from beginning to end, allowing the chronology and reconstruction of the various phases of the paroxysm:
After dark, at around 20:00 local time, increasingly larger plumes can be seen rising from the new crater of Anak Krakatau, probably emissions of steam and ash generated by the first explosions, likely phreatomagmatic in nature when rising magma pushed its way up to the still partially lake filled crater and leading to explosive interaction between magma and water (phreatomagmatic activity).
Around 22:20, strombolian explosions start, which quickly become stronger and near-continuous.
At around 23:00, the activity dramatically increases: lava bombs are seen landing all over in the vicinity of the webcam (bright traces), but the camera survives... this is the moment probably, the lava fountaining phase started, which also generated a ash/steam plume rising up to 47,000 ft (15 km) altitude.

Activity remains very high during the next hours. At 02:34, the camera suddenly tilts, probably because hit by a projectile that caused it to move, but it remains operational!
Lava fountains can still bee seen bright red despite the camera facing east into the morning sunlight, but activity decreases after around 06:00. Activity then drops very rapidly at around 08:00, when this eruptive phase can be called to have ended although intermittent, smaller steam and ash clouds still continue to rise from the crater.


The eruption seen from the coast (webcam of the volcano observatory near Carita):


The eruption could be a resumption of the pattern of activity during 2018, when the volcano produced violent paroxysms with lava fountains and lava flows at intervals of few weeks. It will be interesting to monitor whether this is the case and how activity will evolve in the coming weeks and months.
As soon as possible again, we hope to be able to travel and visit the island to document the new activity and probably dramatic changes to the morphology of the island and its crater, where likely a new cone is now forming.

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