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On the fate of pumice rafts formed during the 2012 Havre submarine eruption


Jutzeler, M and Marsh, R and Carey, RJ and White, JDL and Talling, PJ and Karlstrom, L, On the fate of pumice rafts formed during the 2012 Havre submarine eruption, Nature Communications, 5 Article 3660. ISSN 2041-1723 (2014) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Licenced under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0)

DOI: doi:10.1038/ncomms4660


Pumice rafts are floating mobile accumulations of low-density pumice clasts generated by silicic volcanic eruptions. Pumice in rafts can drift for years, become waterlogged and sink, or become stranded on shorelines. Here we show that the pumice raft formed by the impressive, deep submarine eruption of the Havre caldera volcano (Southwest Pacific) in July 2012 can be mapped by satellite imagery augmented by sailing crew observations. Far from coastal interference, the eruption produced a single 4400 km2 raft in 1 day, thus initiating a gigantic, high-precision, natural experiment relevant to both modern and prehistoric oceanic surface dispersal dynamics. Observed raft dispersal can be accurately reproduced by simulating drift and dispersal patterns using currents from an eddy-resolving ocean model hindcast. For future eruptions that produce potentially hazardous pumice rafts, our technique allows real-time forecasts of dispersal routes, in addition to inference of ash/pumice deposit distribution in the deep ocean.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:volcanic eruption, submarine eruption, pumice raft, pumice
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Oceanography
Research Field:Physical oceanography
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the earth sciences
UTAS Author:Jutzeler, M (Dr Martin Jutzeler)
UTAS Author:Carey, RJ (Associate Professor Rebecca Carey)
ID Code:90887
Year Published:2014
Funding Support:Australian Research Council (DP110102196)
Web of Science® Times Cited:64
Deposited By:Earth Sciences
Deposited On:2014-04-30
Last Modified:2017-10-31
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