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Emplacement of the final lava dome of the 2009 eruption of Redoubt Volcano, Alaska

June 1, 2013

After more than 8 months of precursory activity and over 20 explosions in 12 days, Redoubt Volcano, Alaska began to extrude the fourth and final lava dome of the 2009 eruption on April 4. By July 1 the dome had filled the pre-2009 summit crater and ceased to grow. By means of analysis and annotations of time-lapse webcam imagery, oblique-image photogrammetry techniques and capture and analysis of forward-looking infrared (FLIR) images, we tracked the volume, textural, effusive-style and temperature changes in near-real time over the entire growth period of the dome. The first month of growth (April 4–May 4) produced blocky intermediate- to high-silica andesite lava (59–62.3 wt.% SiO2) that initially formed a round dome, expanding by endogenous growth, breaking the surface crust in radial fractures and annealing them with warmer, fresh lava. On or around May 1, more finely fragmented and scoriaceous andesite lava (59.8–62.2 wt.% SiO2) began to appear at the top of the dome coincident with increased seismicity and gas emissions. The more scoriaceous lava spread radially over the dome surface, while the dome continued to expand from endogenous growth and blocky lava was exposed on the margins and south side of the dome. By mid-June the upper scoriaceous lava had covered 36% of the dome surface area. Vesicularity of the upper scoriaceous lava range from 55 to 66%, some of the highest vesicularity measurements recorded from a lava dome.

We suggest that the stability of the final lava dome primarily resulted from sufficient fracturing and clearing of the conduit by preceding explosions that allowed efficient degassing of the magma during effusion. The dome was thus able to grow until it was large enough to exceed the magmastatic pressure in the chamber, effectively shutting off the eruption.

Publication Year 2013
Title Emplacement of the final lava dome of the 2009 eruption of Redoubt Volcano, Alaska
DOI 10.1016/j.jvolgeores.2012.06.014
Authors Katharine F. Bull, Steve W. Anderson, Angela K. Diefenbach, Rick L. Wessels, Sarah M. Henton
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research
Index ID 70193582
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Volcano Science Center