Undersea Volcano Gave Off Signals Before Eruption In 2011
A team of scientists that last year created waves by correctly forecasting the 2011 eruption of Axial Seamount years in advance now says that the undersea volcano located some 250 miles off the Oregon coast gave off clear signals hours before its impending eruption. The researchers' documentation of inflation of the undersea volcano from gradual magma intrusion over a period of years led to the long-term eruption forecast. But new analyses using data from underwater hydrophones also show an abrupt spike in seismic energy about 2.6 hours before the eruption started, which the scientists say could lead to short-term forecasting of undersea volcanoes in the future. They also say that Axial could erupt again – as soon as 2018 – based on the cyclic pattern of ground deformation measurements from bottom pressure recorders.
Image credit: Bill Chadwick, Oregon State University