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    Chile's Chaiten Volcano on Red Alert

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    mountaingirl/NM

    Posts : 58
    Join date : 2010-02-17

    Chile's Chaiten Volcano on Red Alert

    Post  mountaingirl/NM on Sat 27 Feb 2010, 6:46 pm



    http://www.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/americas/02/17/chile.volcano/index.html



    February 17, 2010 9:33 a.m. EST

    Santiago, Chile (CNN) -- Chile's Chaiten volcano has been placed under red alert due to an increase in seismic activity for three weeks, the Chilean government said.

    The volcano in southern Chile became active in May 2008 after being dormant for more than 9,000 years.

    Volcanic activity was on the decline in the past few months until picking back up January 21, the Chilean Interior Ministry said in a news release Monday.

    The red alert, which indicates activity is above normal levels and an eruption could be imminent, was enacted in large part to protect tourists in the area, said Carmen Fernandez, director of Chile's National Emergency Office.

    Underground seismic rumblings 1.2 to 5 miles (2 to 8 kilometers) deep in the area around the volcano and constant gas eruptions in the dome indicate "a high grade of instability," the National Emergency Office said.

    CNN Chile's Katherine Miranda contributed to this report.



    Not far from epicenter of of the 8.8 Quake.-MG
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    mountaingirl/NM

    Posts : 58
    Join date : 2010-02-17

    Details on Chaiten Volcano

    Post  mountaingirl/NM on Sat 27 Feb 2010, 6:49 pm



    http://geology.com/volcanoes/chaiten/

    Chaitén: Introduction

    Chaitén is a small volcanic caldera located on the flank of the Michinmahuida volcano in southern Chile. Before 2008, it consisted mainly of a rhyolitic lava dome last active 9,400 years ago. But in May 2008, Chaitén began erupting violently, producing numerous plumes, pyroclastic flows and lahars, and building a new lava dome on the north side of the old one. The eruption has had serious consequences for the nearby town of Chaitén, inundating it with lahars and ash, and ash from the eruption has even disrupted travel and agriculture in surrounding countries.

    Chaitén: Plate Tectonic Setting

    Chaitén sits above the Peru-Chile subduction zone. In this convergent boundary, the Nazca Plate is being subducted under the South American tectonic plate. The southern end of the plate dips at a steep angle, while the northern end may be experiencing flat-slab subduction (in which the oceanic slab slides beneath the continental plate at a very low angle). A low angle of subduction may explain the relative lack of volcanic activity in the northern part of Chile, compared to the extremely active southern volcanic mountains.

    (full details at link)

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