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Savo volcano

stratovolcano 485 m / 1,591 ft
Central Province, Solomon Islands, -9.13°S / 159.82°E
Current status: dormant (1 out of 5) | Reports
Savo volcano books
Typical eruption style: explosive
Savo volcano eruptions: 1865 ± 20 years (?), 1835 ± 5 years - around 1847, 1650 ± 20 years, around 1568 No recent earthquakes
TimeMag. / DepthDistanceLocation
Savo volcano is a forested andesitic to dacitic stratovolcano that forms the 6x7 km wide Savo Island, located 14 km north of Guadalcanal.
The volcano contains a shallow, elliptical 1x1.5 km wide summit crater.
Savo volcano has had dangerous explosive eruptions in the past centuries reflected in local legends. The first historic eruption was in 1568, when Spanish explorers arrived at the island. Oral traditions preserve the memory that pyroclastic flows killed almost all inhabitants, and that the island grew in size (by deposits of pyroclastic flows) on the northern size.
Due to its proximity to the capital Honiara and its frequent explosive eruptions, Savo is probably the most dangerous volcano of the Solomon Islands.
Savo Island is also known for its megapode population.

Background:

Savo volcano contains lava domes of historical age on the crater floor and its NE rim. Older domes occur on the flanks of the volcano. Pyroclastic flows and mudflows that traveled down valleys from the summit crater form large debris fans along the coast.
Savo has a very active and large hydrothermal system with many thermal areas, located in the summit crater, on the S to SE flanks, and offshore. They include areas of steaming ground, fumaroles, small geysers, and hot springs, many of high pH and sulphate-rich. Precipitates around hot springs include sinter, travertine and mixed silica-carbonate, often enriched in gold and tellur.
Well-known thermal areas include: Fisher Voghala (hot sulfurous water), Mbiti Voghala (boiling mud pots and geysers), Pipisala (crater fumarole), the Tanginakula river near Mbokiaka (having both cold and hot waters), Vutusuala (hot springs and heated ground), Reoka, Mbulika and Tavoka (hot springs near Sesepi, heating the Kolika River), Talughau and Toakomata (remote hot springs in the bush).
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Sources:
- Smithsonian / GVP volcano information
- Smith, D.J. (2009) "From Slab to Sinter: The Magmatic-Hydrothermal System of Savo Volcano, Solomon Islands", PhD. thesis, Dept. of Geology, Univ Leicester


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