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The 6–8 Aug 2019 eruption of ‘Volcano F’ in the Tofua Arc, Tonga

Brandl, Philipp A; Schmid, Florian; Augustin, Nico; Grevemeyer, Ingo; Arculus, Richard; Devey, C W; Petersen, Sven; Stewart, Margaret; Kopp, Heidrun; Hannington, Mark D

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In August 2019 a large raft of pumice appeared in the territorial waters of Tonga. As in many other cases, this pumice raft was the only surface expression of a major submarine volcanic eruption. Discolored water and reconstruction of the drift path of the pumice raft using satellite imagery points towards ‘Volcano F’ in the Tofua Arc NW of the island of Vava’u as the most likely volcanic source. Here we present imagery from ESA’s Sentinel-2 satellite that captured the start of the...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorBrandl, Philipp A
dc.contributor.authorSchmid, Florian
dc.contributor.authorAugustin, Nico
dc.contributor.authorGrevemeyer, Ingo
dc.contributor.authorArculus, Richard
dc.contributor.authorDevey, C W
dc.contributor.authorPetersen, Sven
dc.contributor.authorStewart, Margaret
dc.contributor.authorKopp, Heidrun
dc.contributor.authorHannington, Mark D
dc.date.accessioned2020-12-08T01:52:12Z
dc.identifier.issn0377-0273
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/216753
dc.description.abstractIn August 2019 a large raft of pumice appeared in the territorial waters of Tonga. As in many other cases, this pumice raft was the only surface expression of a major submarine volcanic eruption. Discolored water and reconstruction of the drift path of the pumice raft using satellite imagery points towards ‘Volcano F’ in the Tofua Arc NW of the island of Vava’u as the most likely volcanic source. Here we present imagery from ESA’s Sentinel-2 satellite that captured the start of the submarine eruption on 6 August 2019 and the waning of the eruption on 8 August, followed by observations of the drifting pumice raft until 14 August. This start time is consistent with T-phase records at the seismic stations on Niue Island and Rarotonga and the signal delay time of 733 s between the two stations is consistent with an origin at or at least near Volcano F. On 8 August, a >136.7 km2 large raft of pumice appears at the sea surface. The modelled minimum raft volume is 8.2–41.0*106 m3, which is equivalent to 2.5–12.3*106 m3 dense rock. The eruption thus corresponds to a volcanic explosivity index (VEI) 2–3 eruption in the submarine environment. Prior to the volcanic eruption, a series of earthquakes close to Volcano F was recorded. The series started on 5 August with a Mb 4.7 event, followed by at least six shallow earthquakes (Mb >3.9) on 6 August. In December 2018 and January 2019, we surveyed the seafloor around Volcano F with multibeam sonar. Combining our data with pre-existing information, we present the first comprehensive bathymetric map of the volcanic edifice and its geologic setting. We show that Volcano F represents a major arc volcanic complex that is situated in an extensional setting. The basal diameter of the volcanic apron is >50 km with a large central, 8.7 x 6 km caldera with a floor at ∼700 m water depth. The top of the post-caldera constructional cone complex had a summit depth of 35 m below sea level in 2004. The volcano shows geochemical differences to the adjacent arc volcanoes on Fonualei and Late islands. The volcano’s pristine volcanic morphology and two documented eruptions (2001 and 2019)indicate a highly active volcanic system that warrants further scientific attention.
dc.description.sponsorshipFunding of this cruise through the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is acknowledged (BMBF 03S0575).
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdf
dc.language.isoen_AU
dc.publisherElsevier
dc.rights© 2019 Elsevier B.V.
dc.sourceJournal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research
dc.titleThe 6–8 Aug 2019 eruption of ‘Volcano F’ in the Tofua Arc, Tonga
dc.typeJournal article
local.description.notesImported from ARIES
local.identifier.citationvolume390
dc.date.issued2020
local.identifier.absfor040314 - Volcanology
local.identifier.ariespublicationu6269649xPUB664
local.publisher.urlhttps://www.elsevier.com/en-au
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationBrandl, Philipp A, GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research
local.contributor.affiliationSchmid, Florian, GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel
local.contributor.affiliationAugustin, Nico, GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel
local.contributor.affiliationGrevemeyer, Ingo, GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel
local.contributor.affiliationArculus, Richard, College of Science, ANU
local.contributor.affiliationDevey, C W, GEOMAR Helmholtz-Zentrum fur Ozeanforschung Kiel
local.contributor.affiliationPetersen, Sven, GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel
local.contributor.affiliationStewart, Margaret, University of Ottawa
local.contributor.affiliationKopp, Heidrun, GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel
local.contributor.affiliationHannington, Mark D, GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel
local.description.embargo2037-12-31
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage1
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage9
local.identifier.doi10.1016/j.jvolgeores.2019.106695
local.identifier.absseo970104 - Expanding Knowledge in the Earth Sciences
dc.date.updated2020-07-19T08:32:30Z
local.identifier.scopusID2-s2.0-85076205821
CollectionsANU Research Publications

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