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Reawakening Redoubt?

A new earthquake swarm has started near the summit of Redoubt in Alaska – does this mean an eruption will soon follow?

The steam plume from the new dome on Redoubt, taken in January 2010. Image courtesy of USGS/AVO, taken by Dennis Anderson.

News comes out of Alaska that a small earthquake swarm has begun under Redoubt. This is the second such swarm since the volcano’s 2009 activity ceased. Most of the seismicity appears to be near the summit of the volcano, which would suggest that magma might be moving underneath the new dome that is still steaming.

AVO describes the unrest:

“This morning, at roughly 01:44 AKDT (0944 UTC) a series of small repetitive earthquakes began occurring in the vicinity of the volcano’s summit.”

If new magma is rising, we might expect to see some phreatic explosions, following by ash plumes and/or a collapse of the new dome producing pyroclastic flows. AVO has returned Redoubt to “Yellow” status, meaning the volcano is showing signs of unrest. I’ll post more details when they come.

{Hat tip to Randall Nix for bringing the swarm to my attention.}


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