News > Volcanology
volcanoes of Vanuatu are located along a zone of convergence (subduction)
the Australian and Pacific Plates. They are
part of the Pacific's "Ring of Fire", which accounts for 70%
of the world's volcanic activity. The viscosity of the magma that underlies
them gives them explosive characteristics. When a quantity of water is
also present, this results in highly spectacular "hydro-magmatic" eruptions.
In 1452, the cataclysmic explosion of Kuwae (between the islands of Epi
and Tongoa) hurled more than 25 cubic kilometres of pulverized rock into
Different volcanological group, including French, New Zealand and Vanuatu, contribute in the studies and monitoring of Vanuatu volcanic edifices. Different approaches (*) were considered including ground base measurements associated with satellite remote sensing. (**). Bulletins (in chronological order below) were released during volcanic crises periods (e.g. Ambae, December 2005 – January 2006) and/or during volcanic high activity phase. (Yasur, 2002; July, 2004).
(*)Yasur is monitored by equipment located on the ash plain, 2 km away from the main crater, which transmits data on the ground movement (volcanic tremors associated with strombolian or vulcanian activity) six times a day to a NOAA-ARGOS satellite. These data have been recorded continuously since 1992, and show the evolution of the activity - and thus the hazard level - of Yasur volcano in real time.
Satellite remote sensing enable the detection of volcanic gas discharge
and thermal anomaly (presence of hot corps).