Pyroclastic flows generated by gravitational instability of the 1996-97 Lava Dome of Soufriere Hills Volcano, Montserrat

P. D. Cole, E. S. Calder, T. H. Druitt, R. Hoblitt, R. Robertson, R. S. J. Sparks, S. R. Young

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Numerous pyroclastic flows were produced during 1996–97 by collapse of the growing andesitic lava dome at Soufriere Hills Volcano, Montserrat. Measured deposit volumes from these flows range from 0.2 to 9 × 106 m³. Flows range from discrete, single pulse events to sustained large scale dome collapse events. Flows entered the sea on the eastern and southern coasts, depositing large fans of material at the coast. Small runout distance (<1 km) flows had average flow front velocities in the order of 3–10 m/s while flow fronts of the larger runout distance flows (up to 6.5 km) advanced in the order of 15–30 m/s. Many flows were locally highly erosive. Field relations show that development of the fine grained ash cloud surge component was enhanced during the larger sustained events. Periods of elevated pyroclastic flow productivity and sustained dome collapse events are linked to pulses of high magma extrusion rates.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3425-3428
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume25
Issue number18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sep 1998

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