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

Jutzeler, M. and Marsh, R. and Carey, R.J. and White, J.D.L. and Talling, P.J. and Karlstrom, L. (2014) 'On the fate of pumice rafts formed during the 2012 Havre submarine eruption.', Nature communications., 5 . p. 3660.

Abstract

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 >400 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 Type:Article
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First Live Deposit - 15 February 2017
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Status:Peer-reviewed
Publisher Web site:https://doi.org/10.1038/ncomms4660
Publisher statement:This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/
Record Created:15 Feb 2017 16:29
Last Modified:15 Feb 2017 16:33

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