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The twin volcanoes Lokon and Empung, rising about 800 m above the plain of Tondano, are among the most active volcanoes of Sulawesi.
Lokon, the higher of the two peaks (whose summits are only 2.2 km apart), has a flat, craterless top. The younger Empung volcano has a 400-m-wide, 150-m-deep crater that erupted last in the 18th century, but all subsequent eruptions have originated from Tompaluan, a 150 x 250 m wide double crater situated in the saddle between the two peaks.
Historical eruptions have primarily produced small-to-moderate ash plumes that have occasionally damaged croplands and houses, but lava-dome growth and pyroclastic flows have also occurred.
Earthquake swarm at Lokon volcano on 8 Mar 2016 (VSI)
A warning was issued for the volcano and its alert level raised to 3 ("siaga" - alert, on a scale of 1-4) last Monday after a seismic swarm was detected to occur under the edifice. ...more
The previous day (7 Mar), PVMBG recorded 25 deep and 138 shallow volcanic quakes, 23 rockfall signals as well as a tremor signal. In addition, deformation (inflation) was measured to occur under the Tompaluan crater. While no to little changes were seen in surface activity (degassing), these geophysical parameters seem to suggest that internal pressure in the hydrothermal system of the volcano has recently increased and the risk of sudden explosions (phreatic or phreatomagmatic) has to be considered elevated at the moment.
Seismic activity at Lokon volcano 1-12 Jan 2016 (VSI)
The volcano remains at significant unrest and moderate to large explosions could occur any time, the latest evaluation report of the volcano observatory states and alert level is being maintained at 3 ("siaga") on a scale of 1-4. ...more
During the past weeks, visual activity consisted in degassing creating a plume of 25-150 m above the Tumpalun crater. Seismic activity has been dominated by frequent shallow volcanic earthquakes (up to 21 per day), sometimes felt nearby. No clear trend has been visible over the past two weeks. [less]
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