Recent patterns of geologic unrest in long Valley caldera in east-central California emphasize that this large, silicic volcanic system and the adjacent, geologically youthful Inyo-Mono Craters volcanic chain are still active and capable of producing locally hazardous volcanic eruptions. A series of four magnitude -6 earthquakes in May 1980 called attention to this current episode of unrest, and subsequent activity has included numerous earthquake swarms in the south moat of the caldera accompanied by inflation of the resurgent dome by more than 50 cm over the last five years. The seismicity associated with this unrest is currently monitored by a network of 31 telemetered seismic stations with an automatic processing system that yelds hypocentral locations and earthquake magnitudes in near-real time. Deformation of the ground is monitored by a) a series of overlapping trilateration networks that provide coverage ranging from annual measurements of regional deformation to daily measurements of deformation local to the active, southern section of the caldera, b) a regional network of level lines surveyed annually, c) a regional network of precise gravity stations occupied annually, d) local, L-shaped level figures surveyed every few months, and e) a network of fourteen borehole tiltmeter clusters (two instruments in each cluster) and a borehole dilatometer, the telemetered signals from which provide continuous data on deformation rates. Additional telemetered data provide continuous information on fluctuations in the local magnetic field, hydrogen gas emission rates at three sites, and water level and temperatures in three wells. Continuous data on disharge rates and temperatures from hot springs and fumaroles are collected by several on-site recorders within the caldera, and samples for liquid and gas chemistry are collected several times per year from selected hot springs and fumaroles. ?? 1984 Intern. Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior.
Additional publication details
Monitoring unrest in a large silicic caldera, the long Valley-inyo craters volcanic complex in east-central California