The 2012–2016 White Island (Whakaari) eruption sequence encompassed six small explosive events that included one steam driven and five explosive phreato-magmatic eruptions. More enigmatic, a dome was observed at the back of the vent and crater lake in November 2012. Its emplacement date could not be easily determined due to persistent steam from the evaporating crater lake and because of the very low levels of discrete volcanic earthquakes associated with its growth. During this period, seismicity also included persistent tremor with dominant frequencies in the 2–5 Hz range. Detailed assessment of the tremor reveals a very slow evolution of the spectral peaks from low to higher frequencies. These gliding spectral lines evolved over a three-month time period beginning in late September 2012 and persisting until early January 2013, when the tremor stabilised. As part of the dome emplacement episode, the crater lake progressively dried, leaving isolated pools which then promoted persistent mud/sulphur eruption activity starting in mid-January 2013. We interpret the emplacement of the dome as a non-explosive process where the hot, mostly degassed, magma intruded slowly through the hydrothermal system in late September 2012 and cooled in a relatively quiet state. The tremor evolution might reflect the slow contraction of subsurface resonant cavities, which increased the pitch of the peak resonant frequency through time. Alternatively, spectral evolution might reflect a ‘comb function’ due to clockwork beating of the slowly cooling dome, although direct evidence of clockwork beats is not seen in the waveform data. Finally, it might represent frothing of the hydrothermal system ahead of the slowly propagating magma.

‘Silent’ Dome Emplacement into a Wet Volcano: Observations from an Effusive Eruption at White Island (Whakaari), New Zealand in Late 2012

Carniel R.
Ultimo
Conceptualization
2020-01-01

Abstract

The 2012–2016 White Island (Whakaari) eruption sequence encompassed six small explosive events that included one steam driven and five explosive phreato-magmatic eruptions. More enigmatic, a dome was observed at the back of the vent and crater lake in November 2012. Its emplacement date could not be easily determined due to persistent steam from the evaporating crater lake and because of the very low levels of discrete volcanic earthquakes associated with its growth. During this period, seismicity also included persistent tremor with dominant frequencies in the 2–5 Hz range. Detailed assessment of the tremor reveals a very slow evolution of the spectral peaks from low to higher frequencies. These gliding spectral lines evolved over a three-month time period beginning in late September 2012 and persisting until early January 2013, when the tremor stabilised. As part of the dome emplacement episode, the crater lake progressively dried, leaving isolated pools which then promoted persistent mud/sulphur eruption activity starting in mid-January 2013. We interpret the emplacement of the dome as a non-explosive process where the hot, mostly degassed, magma intruded slowly through the hydrothermal system in late September 2012 and cooled in a relatively quiet state. The tremor evolution might reflect the slow contraction of subsurface resonant cavities, which increased the pitch of the peak resonant frequency through time. Alternatively, spectral evolution might reflect a ‘comb function’ due to clockwork beating of the slowly cooling dome, although direct evidence of clockwork beats is not seen in the waveform data. Finally, it might represent frothing of the hydrothermal system ahead of the slowly propagating magma.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11390/1192541
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