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Satellite images of Popocatepetl volcano (c)Google Earth View
Satellite images of Popocatepetl volcano (c)Google Earth View
Popocatépetl volcano
Stratovolcano 5426 m / 17,802 ft
Central Mexico, 19.02°N / -98.62°W
Current status: erupting (4 out of 5)
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Popocatépetl volcano eruptions:
1345-47, 1354, 1363(?), 1488, 1504, 1509(?), 1512, 1518, 1519-23(?), 1528, 1530, 1539-40, 1542, 1548, 1571, 1580, 1590, 1592-94, 1642, 1663-65, 1666-67, 1697, 1720, 1802-04, 1827(?), 1834(?), 1852(?), 1919-22, 1923-24, 1925-27(?), 1933, 1942-43, 1947, 1994-95, 1996-2003, 2004-ongoing
Typical eruption style:
Dominantly explosive, construction of lava domes. Plinian eruptions at intervals of several centuries or few thousands of years, vulcanian and strombolian activity in intermittent phases.
Last earthquakes nearby
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Popocatepetl volcano news & eruption update

Popocatépetl volcano (Central Mexico) activity update: frequent but small explosions, strong steaming, crater glow

Tuesday Sep 18, 2012 10:05 AM | BY: T

Popo with glow from the summit seen early on 17 Aug (CENAPRED)
Popo with glow from the summit seen early on 17 Aug (CENAPRED)
Between 16-17 Sep, the frequency of small explosions peaked with 120 events, i.e. on average 5 per hour and has decreased to 60 during the past 24 hours as stated in the recent CENAPRED report this morning local time. The larger of the explosions produced small ash plumes. Constant glow above the crater is visible at night (s. image).
Episodes of harmonic tremor and an M1.6 earthquake at 22:23 lasat night local time were reported as well.
Previous news
Explosion from Popo yesterday
Monday, Sep 17, 2012
A further increase of Popocatépetl's activity can be observed. CENAPRED in its latest report yesterday evening reported 79 weak to moderate explosions during 24 hours, i.e. 3 time more than the day before. Some of them produced ash plumes rising a few 100 m such as the explosions at 12:14 h and 14:02 h local time on 15 Sep. No ash fall was reported from nearby villages. ... [more]
Eruption from Popo early on 15 Sep (CENPARED)
Sunday, Sep 16, 2012
A slight increase of activity can be noted at Popocatépetl volcano. In the latest report from 15 Sep, CENPRED reported 28 explosions during the past 24 hours, i.e. the frequency has more than doubled when compared to last week. ... [more]
Popo with glow from the summit seen early on 14 Sep (CENAPRED)
Friday, Sep 14, 2012
Weak steam and sometimes ash explosions continue about every 2-3 hours. Otherwise, a strong steam plume is being emitted and satellite imagery show that there is still a lot of SO2 production from the volcano. At night, glow from the crater is visible, suggesting that the lava dome continues to grow slowly. [more]
SO2 plume from Popocatépetl on 11 Sep 2012 (NOAA)
Wednesday, Sep 12, 2012
A strong SO2 plume could be seen on NOAA's satellite image yesterday. The activity remains stable and at low levels. CENAPRED reports steaming and about 10 small explosions per day. [more]
Current seismogram from Popocatépetl
Tuesday, Sep 11, 2012
10 weak explosions were registered during the past 24 hours, but it was not possible to see whether they contained ash. The largest were at 20:01h, 20:42h yesterday and this morning at 10:39h local time. CENAPRED also recorded weak tremor pulses and some small quakes are visible on the current seismogram. [more]

Background:

Volcán Popocatépetl, whose name is the Aztec word for smoking mountain, towers to 5426 m 70 km SE of Mexico City to form North America's 2nd-highest volcano.  The glacier-clad stratovolcano contains a steep-walled, 250-450 m deep crater.  The generally symmetrical volcano is modified by the sharp-peaked Ventorrillo on the NW, a remnant of an earlier volcano. 
At least three previous major cones were destroyed by gravitational failure during the Pleistocene, producing massive debris-avalanche deposits covering broad areas south of the volcano.  The modern volcano was constructed to the south of the late-Pleistocene to Holocene El Fraile cone.  Three major plinian eruptions, the most recent of which took place about 800 AD, have occurred from Popocatépetl since the mid Holocene, accompanied by pyroclastic flows and voluminous lahars that swept basins below the volcano.  Frequent historical eruptions, first recorded in Aztec codices, have occurred since precolumbian time.


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Source: GVP, Smithsonian Institution - Popocatepetl information


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