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22-23 Dec 2018 eruption & tsunami of Krakatoa - updates

Updated: Jul 1, 2022 14:36 GMT - Refresh
On this special page, we will post news about Anak Krakatau's eruption when a large portion of the island collapsed in the evening of 22 Dec 2018 and caused a deadly tsunami on Java's western coast. New reports and material will be added on the top of the page, so reload it from time to time!
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Spectacular aerial video of Anak Krakatoa now with crater lake
Update Sun 13 Jan 2019 14:27
James Reynold visited the island recently and published the following video of the completely reshaped island of Anak Krakatau:
- The crater area has closed to become a lake which showed steaming (no explosions have been recorded since yesterday, as the activity has continued to calm down, perhaps only temporarily).
- The forest on the island is completely destroyed by ash fall and surges, but still visible.

Rakata Island (Krakatoa): beach destroyed by tsunami waves
Update Thu 10 Jan 2019 11:38
View of the beach of Rakata island in Jan 2019, destroyed by tsunami on 22 Dec 2018 (image: Black / VolcanoDiscovery)
View of the beach of Rakata island in Jan 2019, destroyed by tsunami on 22 Dec 2018 (image: Black / VolcanoDiscovery)
The northern coast of Rakata Island, facing Anak Krakatau, was hit by massive waves (up to approx 30 m high) during the catastrophic landslide and tsunami on the evening of 22 Dec.
The entire beach and the slightly higher, up to 50 m wide forested platform behind it, separating it from the cliff, have been washed away and/or collapsed in landslides following the receding wave.
Surviving fishermen who were in the caldera at the time of the event reported seeing massive waves sweeping over the entire, lower island of Sertung (west of Anak Krakatau), estimating them to be about 25 m in height.

Video was taken by a friend and local guide Black from Carita who also confirmed that the forest and beach of Anak Krakatau are gone as well...
Reconstruction of recent events: collapse, tsunami and regrowth of the Anak Krakatau island
Update Thu 03 Jan 2019 09:30
Interpretation of the recent changes on Anak Krakatau by comparing several satellite images (source: Dongeng Geologi)
Interpretation of the recent changes on Anak Krakatau by comparing several satellite images (source: Dongeng Geologi)
The attached image compares several detailed satellite images taken before, immediately after the tsunami on 22 Dec 2018 as well two and five days later, and gives an interpretation of what caused the tsunami (= a collapse of the western lava benches).
Comparing the morphology of the island as seen on the pictures, a plausible reconstruction of events would be as follows:

22 Dec: part of the lava flow terrace that forms the western shores of Anak Krakatau collapse, probably involving a significant underwater volume. This caused the tsunami that hit the Java west coast around 21:30 local time.

23-24 Dec: additional collapses (but involving much less volume each) in combination with violent explosions remove more material from the island, eating away until the whole summit cone is gone (3rd picture).

25 Dec: heavy and very wet water-lava explosions deposit meters of fresh, wet ash and blocks all over the island, along with sea current that wash the muddy material to shores. This way, the crescent-shaped island seen on the 27 Dec (and later) pictures with the open crater bay is formed. Significant land addition has extended the island's eastern shores (compare the satellite overlay image posted earlier).
Radial erosion gullies formed quickly as result of torrents of water carving down the loose material now covering the island. This water is both from a) heavy rains as well as b) ejected liquid and b) condensation of steam from the water-rich explosions.

Source: Teka Teki Gunung Anak Krakatau (Dongeng Geologi)

Krakatoa volcano (Sunda Strait, Indonesia): extraordinary footage showing intense explosions of water with lava

Wed, 2 Jan 2019, 21:56
21:56 PM | BY: T
Surtseyan explosion at Anak Krakatau yesterday (image: Doni Janskulo)
Surtseyan explosion at Anak Krakatau yesterday (image: Doni Janskulo)
Here are some of the most terrifying explosions on Anak Krakatau recently filmed. Our correspondent Doni Janskulo from Kalianda, Lampung, took advantage of very clear views yesterday and managed to take some of the most extraordinary and dramatic footage yet of the explosions on collapsed Anak Krakatau island.
Even though it is from 40 km away, it shows the activity in amazing detail. It takes place at the island of Anak Krakatau, hidden from view now behind Panjang island seen in the foreground. The active vent is now under water and lets sea water interact violently with the rising magma: the result is so-called Surtseyan activity, a type of volcanic eruption that takes place in shallow seas or lakes, named after the island of Surtsey which appeared off the southern coast of Iceland and had this activity in 1963.
In this video, very powerful explosions can be seen generating jets of ash, debris, steam and water to several hundred meters ("rooster tails") radially from the explosion point.
In addition, large surges (horizontally expanding hot clouds of steam mixed with ash) can be seen sometimes engulfing the whole island of Panjang, which is hiding the view of Anak Krakatau itself.
Be sure to watch to the end, at times, the explosions tend to be bigger and bigger throughout the video.

The video was generously granted for display here by local resident and videographer Doni Janskulo, who lost most of his equipment during the 22 Dec 2018 tsunami that devastated Java's west coast.
If you want to support him, subscribe to his youtube channel or embed this video.
Links / Sources:

Krakatoa volcano (Sunda Strait, Indonesia): ash plume reported to 35-40,000 ft altitude

Wed, 2 Jan 2019, 10:22
10:22 AM | BY: T
Krakatoa volcano and a possible steam/ash plume this morning on Himawari-8 satellite image
Krakatoa volcano and a possible steam/ash plume this morning on Himawari-8 satellite image
Recent seismic activity as reported by the volcano observatory
Recent seismic activity as reported by the volcano observatory
Sometimes strong explosive activity seems to continue at the volcano: VAAC Darwin reported an ash plume that rose to 40,000 ft (12 km) altitude this morning as well as "regular, intermittent" emissions of volcanic ash to 35,000 ft (10 km).
Seismic activity is still relatively low, but has picked up again after a phase of near absence at the end of 2018.

Krakatoa volcano (Sunda Strait, Indonesia): fresh aerial image showing the island's dramatic change in shape

Mon, 31 Dec 2018, 15:34
15:34 PM | BY: T
Anak Krakatau island seen 30 Dec 2018 (author unknown / Dongeng Geologi via facebook)
Anak Krakatau island seen 30 Dec 2018 (author unknown / Dongeng Geologi via facebook)
Anak Krakatau island seen 30 Dec 2018 (author unknown / Dongeng Geologi via instagram)
Anak Krakatau island seen 30 Dec 2018 (author unknown / Dongeng Geologi via instagram)
A fresh aerial image from Anak Krakatau has appeared on the very active Volcanoes and Volcanism group on facebook:
it shows in more detail what the 29 Dec satellite image already confirmed: the island of Anak Krakatau has now the shape of a 270 deg almost closed crescent, with a water-filled crater in the center where once the 330 m tall summit cone stood (which collapsed on 22 Dec causing the tsunami).
Although the image is not detailed enough, it seems (and it would be expected so after the violent phreatomagmatic activity following the collapse) that virtually all of the island has been covered and reshaped, smoothed out by fresh pyroclastic deposits. What if any of its flora and fauna has survived needs to be found out yet by visiting it.
Happy New Year to all!

This processed satellite image from 28 Dec below shows the change in morphology even clearer, but includes a significant land gain after the collapse as well, which seems to have build most of the southern "arm" of the crescent. Most of the new land is probably due to accumulated material (tephra) from the intense sursteyan activity in the days after the landslide, building a new large tuff ring around the crater:
Links / Sources:
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