A high-level eruption occurred at Indonesian Soputan volcano (North Sulawesi) around 10:15 UTC on February 6, 2016. Aviation color code was set to Red. The peak of the volcano was not visible due to clouds and fog.
According to the Darwin VAAC report issued 10:45 UTC, volcanic ash reached 7 km (23 000 feet). "The eruption is clearly visible on satellite, and volcanic ash is expected to move west to northwest and dissipate after the next 12 hours. Further eruptions are possible," the office said. "There is a low confidence in long-term forecast due to early stages of the eruption."
At 15:30 UTC, Darwin VAAC said volcanic ash was reaching 6 km (20 000 feet ) and extending 55 km (34.5 miles) to the northwest. The emissions appear to be continuing from the summit to 4.2 km (14 000 feet). Ash is moving to the northwest at 9 to 18 km/h (5.5 - 11.2 mph) and beginning to weaken.
Image credit: Darwin VAAC
According to a local newspaper article, there were two eruptions today. A presumably smaller one (which did not cause any alerts) in the morning at 10:00 (local time), and a "terrific" eruption at 18:15 local time (10:15 UTC), which sent a large ash plume into the sky, Volcano Discovery reported. Ashfall was reported from the areas at the feet of the volcano, but there seems not to have been any damage.
Soputan eruption on February 6, 2016. Image credit: Devy Kamil Syahbana
On January 6, 2016, BNPB reported that several explosions had been detected since the Alert Level for Soputan was raised to 3 (on a scale of 1-4) on January 4. Strombolian activity that began at 03:50 local time on January 5 ejected incandescent material as high as 250 m (820 feet) above the crater. A booming sound at 06:38 was followed by a pyroclastic flow that traveled 2.5 km (1.5 miles) down the ENE flank.
Ash plumes rose 6.5 km (21 300 feet) above the crater and drifted W. Several villages in the districts of West Langowan (8 km / 5 miles E), Tompaso (11 km / 6.8 miles NE), and East Ratahan (14 km / 8.7 miles SE) reported ashfall. Residents and tourists were advised not to approach the craters within a radius of 4 km (2.5 miles), or 6.5 km (4 miles) on the WSW flank.
Soputan eruption during the morning hours of January 5, 2015 (local time). Image credit: PVMBG
The small Soputan stratovolcano on the southern rim of the Quaternary Tondano caldera on the northern arm of Sulawesi Island is one of Sulawesi's most active volcanoes. The youthful, largely unvegetated volcano rises to 1784 m and is located SW of Sempu volcano.
It was constructed at the southern end of a SSW-NNE trending line of vents. During historical time the locus of eruptions has included both the summit crater and Aeseput, a prominent NE-flank vent that formed in 1906 and was the source of intermittent major lava flows until 1924. (GVP)
Featured image: Soputan eruption on February 6, 2016. Credit: Devy Kamil Syahbana