White Island, New-Zealand : recent slight intensification of activity at White Island.

White Island,  New-Zealand :  recent slight intensification of activity at White Island.

On 14 October the GeoNet Data Centre reported a recent slight intensification of activity at White Island. Increased amounts of CO2 emitted from one of the large accessible fumaroles was detected on 1 October along with a temperature increase. SO2 emissions at the volcano also increased. On 8 October volcanic tremor magnitude strengthened and became banded (the signal disappeared and reappeared every few hours), commonly noted during eruptions and periods of unrest.

Two DOAS SO2 gas spectrometers are installed on the island and under favorable conditions measure the sulphur dioxide (SO2) gas output. This has averaged around 300 tons per day this year, ranging from 120 to 750 tons per day during the last month. About once a month we make airborne measurements of sulphur dioxide (SO2), carbon dioxide (CO2) and hydrogen sulphide (H2S) outputs. This year these have averaged about 350 t/day for SO2, 1180 t/day for CO2 and 8.5 t/day for H2S. During our most recent flight on October 7 we measured 525 t/day of SO2, 1800 t/day of CO2 and 10.5 t/day of H2S. Both the SO2 and CO2 show increases.

During visits to the island in October, GeoNet staff have also sampled and measured the lake temperature (54°C) and it remains similar to other recent measurements. However the lake level has risen about 2 metres since June. Since the lake re-established in late 2013 we have measured a rise of about 6m.

The Volcanic Alert Level remained at 1 and the Aviation Colour Code remained Green.

October 22, 2015. White Island,  New-Zealand :

37.52 ° S, 177,18 ° E

Elevation 321 m

Source: geonet.org.nz ( Bradd Scott), GVP.
Photo : Atlasofwonder

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