Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Volcano's lava dome partially collapses - Mount Merapi
AP on Yahoo ^ | 6/12/06 | Robert Kennedy - ap

Posted on 06/12/2006 9:20:11 PM PDT by NormsRevenge

MOUNT MERAPI, Indonesia - Mount Merapi's unstable lava dome has partially collapsed, easing pressure that threatened to make the Indonesian volcano erupt.

However, the mountain remains as the "highest possible alert," volcanologist Antonius Ratdomopurbo said on Monday.

"We should know within two days whether we can lower the (alert) level," Ratdomopurbo said.

The mountain has been venting steam and debris for weeks, but its lava dome swelled after a powerful May 28 earthquake, raising concerns the dome could suddenly collapse, sending scalding gas, rocks and debris hurtling into populated areas.

A huge, superheated cloud, the largest this year, brought down a section of the dome on Friday and created a new crater, relieving pressure on the dome.

"Now that the magma can flow out into the new crater, the dome will become much more stable," Ratdomopurbo said.

But he warned that 250,000 beleaguered villagers near Merapi were not yet in the clear, as a crack in the lava dome's southern foot had widened, threatening to unleash more powerful surges of superheated gas.

He said Friday's explosion reduced the dome's height from 380 feet to 305 feet, while its volume dropped to 116 million cubic feet from 140 million cubic feet.

A pyroclastic flow — a fast-moving burst of blistering gases and rock fragments — is the main concern. One killed more than 60 villagers in 1994.

As the volcano smoldered above them, defiant residents of its lower slopes have returned from refugee camps to tend to their normally lush green fields, now coated with gray ash.

Men in conical bamboo hats slammed hoes into Merapi's dark, fertile soil. An ash-covered woman swept gray soot from foliage before hacking it down to feed her livestock.

"I am unafraid. I believe the hot cloud will not attack us," said Suno Sudaraso, who refused to evacuate during last week's eruption. "My four cows will die if I don't feed them. They are my life."

The 9,700-foot Merapi is notoriously unpredictable, and scientists say they don't know for sure if a major eruption is imminent.

About 1,300 people died when it erupted in 1930.

____

Associated Press writer Niniek Karmini contributed to this report.


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: collapses; indonesia; lavadome; merapi; mount; partially; ringoffire; volcano

Indonesia's Mount Merapi erupts with molten rock and huge clouds of hot gas as seen from Deles village in Klaten, Indonesia, early Monday, June 12, 2006. A massive blast of searing gas has collapsed a portion of Mount Merapi's unstable lava dome, easing pressure that threatened a full-blown eruption, but the volcano still could be deadly. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)


1 posted on 06/12/2006 9:20:13 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: NormsRevenge
cool. Time to dance.


2 posted on 06/12/2006 9:21:29 PM PDT by CJ Wolf
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: NormsRevenge

Indonesia's Mount Merapi erupts with molten rock and huge clouds of hot gas as seen from Deles village in Klaten, Indonesia, early Monday, June 12, 2006. A massive blast of searing gas has collapsed a portion of Mount Merapi's unstable lava dome, easing pressure that threatened a full-blown eruption, but the volcano still could be deadly. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)


3 posted on 06/12/2006 9:21:51 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi - "The Road to Peace in the Middle East runs thru Damascus.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: NormsRevenge

Hot lava flows from the Mount Merapi volcano as seen from Cangkringan village, near the Indonesian city of Yogyakarta, 440 km (273 miles) east of Jakarta, June 12, 2006. REUTERS/Supri (INDONESIA)


4 posted on 06/12/2006 9:23:14 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi - "The Road to Peace in the Middle East runs thru Damascus.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: NormsRevenge

Hot lava flows from the Mount Merapi volcano as seen from Gondang Arum village in the district of Sleman, near the Indonesian city of Yogyakarta, 440 km (273 miles) east of Jakarta, June 11, 2006. (Supri - INDONESIA/Reuters)


Hot lava flows from the Mount Merapi volcano as seen from Deles village near Indonesia's town of Klaten in Central Java June 11, 2006. REUTERS/Arif Ardian (INDONESIA)


5 posted on 06/12/2006 9:26:38 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi - "The Road to Peace in the Middle East runs thru Damascus.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: NormsRevenge

I swear it isn't my fault.


6 posted on 06/12/2006 9:26:58 PM PDT by Darksheare (Anyone ever wonder at the flavor of the sparrows at San Juan Capistrano? Cappucino sparrows?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: NormsRevenge
"I am unafraid. I believe the hot cloud will not attack us," said Suno Sudaraso, who refused to evacuate during last week's eruption. "My four cows will die if I don't feed them. They are my life."

Did it ever occur to these people to move their livestock? I keep hearing this type of report.

On another note, how does this volcano compare to Mt. Pinatubo (sp?)?

7 posted on 06/12/2006 9:27:43 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Darksheare
I swear it isn't my fault.

Pres Bush? That you?

8 posted on 06/12/2006 9:28:00 PM PDT by isthisnickcool (What is it about "illegal" you don't understand?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: isthisnickcool

No, but 'news of the odd/weird' gets blamed on me, like possessed appliances and such.


9 posted on 06/12/2006 9:31:21 PM PDT by Darksheare (Anyone ever wonder at the flavor of the sparrows at San Juan Capistrano? Cappucino sparrows?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: NormsRevenge

There is an extremely dangerous volcano in the Canary Islands which, if the dome collapsed into the Atlantic Ocean, could wipe out every city on the East Coast of America. The mega tsunami it would produce would possibly reach a height of 1000+ feet as it raced across the ocean at more than 600 mph.


10 posted on 06/12/2006 9:34:00 PM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote life support for others.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: metmom

Merapi is a very active volcano, Pinatubo much less so..

but when they go, lives have been lost in the past and may be again sometime in the future,

When?
No one knows for sure.

--

Over the last 10,000 years or so.


Eruptive History Pinatubo
http://www.volcano.si.edu/world/volcano.cfm?vnum=0703-083&volpage=erupt&VErupt=Y&VSources=Y&VRep=Y&VWeekly=Y

Eruptive History Merapi
http://www.volcano.si.edu/world/volcano.cfm?vnum=0603-25=&volpage=erupt&VErupt=Y&VSources=Y&VRep=Y&VWeekly=Y


11 posted on 06/12/2006 9:36:32 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi - "The Road to Peace in the Middle East runs thru Damascus.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: NormsRevenge

12 posted on 06/12/2006 9:39:25 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi - "The Road to Peace in the Middle East runs thru Damascus.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: MHGinTN
I think you're referring to La Palma in the Canary Islands.


13 posted on 06/12/2006 9:43:33 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi - "The Road to Peace in the Middle East runs thru Damascus.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: MHGinTN
There is an extremely dangerous volcano in the Canary Islands which, if the dome collapsed into the Atlantic Ocean, could wipe out every city on the East Coast of America. The mega tsunami it would produce would possibly reach a height of 1000+ feet as it raced across the ocean at more than 600 mph.

This has largely been debunked by the majority of the Tsunami research community...not like you'd hear about that from the MSM.

14 posted on 06/12/2006 9:51:37 PM PDT by Strategerist
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: NormsRevenge

That's the one ... I think it's on the southern end of its Island.


15 posted on 06/12/2006 9:52:22 PM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote life support for others.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: Strategerist

Actually, it has been strengthened of late by the major collapse that happened in Alaska back in the 50's, I think, which produced a wave several hundred feet high in an islet and out to the ocean. Swiss researchers are doing experiments to understand the 'collapse' phenomenon better.


16 posted on 06/12/2006 9:58:25 PM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote life support for others.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: metmom
On another note, how does this volcano compare to Mt. Pinatubo (sp?)?

They're completely different, really.

Merapi erupts very often in small eruptions. It's never had an eruption that affected much beyond a few miles of itself or that has affected world climate or anything.

Pinatubo completely blows up every 500-1000 years or so.

The largest known eruption of Merapi in the last 10,000 years was only about 1/1000th the size of the Pinatubo eruption in 1991.

The danger of Merapi is the incredibly dense population on and around it; Java is one of the most densely populated areas on earth. Thus you have thousands of people exposed to small pyroclastic flows and such that on most volcanoes wouldn't even get mentioned in the news.

17 posted on 06/12/2006 9:58:57 PM PDT by Strategerist
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: MHGinTN
Actually, it has been strengthened of late by the major collapse that happened in Alaska back in the 50's, I think, which produced a wave several hundred feet high in an islet and out to the ocean. Swiss researchers are doing experiments to understand the 'collapse' phenomenon better.

Nope. It hasn't. I suspect you don't read the Journal of Tsunami research.

The Lituya Bay eruption has very little to do with what (basically one guy) was claiming about La Palma (and frankly I think the frenzied media attention went to his head.)

Landslide Tsunami have difficulty propagating great distances - unlike earthquake tsunami. It's one thing to project a big local tsunami, another to project a teletsunami.

If you're only getting your science info from the MSM, you're not getting good info. They only want to report the exciting and the dangerous. You have to read scientific journals directly.

18 posted on 06/12/2006 10:04:53 PM PDT by Strategerist
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Strategerist; NormsRevenge

I picked up a couple volcano videos for the kids, at Marshall's of all places, and it turned out one of them was a documentary about the USGS and how it followed the whole eruption of the volcano from when there were first reports of it becoming active until it blew. There was some really impressive footage of the days just before and the actual eruption itself, mostly taken by soldiers at the military base there. The immensity of the whole thing is mind boggling. Fascinating video.


19 posted on 06/12/2006 10:05:08 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: NormsRevenge

Cool map, BTW,


20 posted on 06/12/2006 10:05:39 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: metmom

There's a book called "Volcano Cowboys" about the USGS and Mt. St. Helens, Pinatubo, and I think Nevado del Ruiz in Columbia, and about their prediction attempts, etc.

They had the easiest time at Pinatubo because it was easy to get the Air Force leadership to understand the science involved, because of their educational background.


21 posted on 06/12/2006 10:08:01 PM PDT by Strategerist
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: MHGinTN

http://www.drgeorgepc.com/TsunamiMegaEvaluation.html

A good article about the collapse megatsunami threat....

There are some serious problems with the modeling of the La Palma waves...and this guy isn't the only guy that has pointed this out...

But the media (And crappy cable science documentaries) consistently ignore the doubters and present a sensationalized one-sided story.


22 posted on 06/12/2006 10:09:34 PM PDT by Strategerist
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Strategerist

I recall from the video that one of the real concerns they had was if their prediction didn't pan out. The locals who evacuated would not the next time and there would be a tremendous loss of life. The volcano blew just at the end of the warning period, just before people would have been going back to their villages.

Probably, the military bases had some impact because if they were moving out, it would cause the locals to think twice. It's been a long time since I've watched it; I'll have to plug it in again. It was so good that a college geology professor friend of mine borrowed it to show his classes.


23 posted on 06/12/2006 10:14:23 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: Strategerist
Since Merapi is steep the danger to the population below is increased. If Merapi's cone collapses and forms a caldera, things might settle down but there'd sure be a big shake locally.

Obviously Merapi isn't a dome volcano, but do you know if it's Andesite or Basaltic?
24 posted on 06/12/2006 10:18:23 PM PDT by BIGLOOK (Keelhauling is a sensible solution to mutiny!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Strategerist

As with most 'good science' the offering of counter theories is useful and generally leads to better understanding. I read the link ... thanks for the alternate view. The Lituya Bay collapse was from an altitude and of a mass capable of transferring a huge amount of energy directly to wave propagation. It appears the La Palma mass isn't arranged so precariously, but I'll keep reading up on it.


25 posted on 06/12/2006 10:39:07 PM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote life support for others.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson