Source characterization for an explosion during the 2009 eruption of Redoubt Volcano from very-long-period seismic waves

Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research
By: , and 



The 2009 eruption of Redoubt produced several very-long-period (VLP) signals associated with explosions. We invert for the source location and mechanism of an explosion at Redoubt volcano using waveform methods applied to broadband recordings. Such characterization of the source carries information on the geometry of the conduit and the physics of the explosion process. Inversions are carried out assuming the volcanic source can be modeled as a point source, with mechanisms described by a) a set of 3 orthogonal forces, b) a moment tensor consisting of force couples, and c) both forces and moment tensor components. We find that the source of the VLP seismic waves during the explosion is well-described by either a combined moment/force source located northeast of the crater and at an elevation of 1.6 km ASL or a moment source at an elevation of 800 m to the southwest of the crater. The moment tensors for the solutions with moment and force and moment-only share similar characteristics. The source time functions for both moment tensors begin with inflation (pressurization) and execute two cycles of deflation-reinflation (depressurization–repressurization). Although the moment/force source provides a better fit to the data, we find that owing to the limited coverage of the broadband stations at Redoubt the moment-only source is the more robust and reliable solution. Based on the moment-only solution, we estimate a volume change of 19,000 m3 and a pressure change of 7 MPa in a dominant sill and an out-of-phase volume change of 5000 m3 and pressure change of 1.8 MPa in a subdominant dike at the source location. These results shed new light on the magmatic plumbing system beneath Redoubt and complement previous studies on Vulcanian explosions at other volcanoes.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Source characterization for an explosion during the 2009 eruption of Redoubt Volcano from very-long-period seismic waves
Series title Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research
DOI 10.1016/j.jvolgeores.2012.04.018
Volume 259
Year Published 2013
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) Volcano Science Center
Description 12 p.
First page 77
Last page 88
Country United States
State Alaska
Other Geospatial Redoubt Volcano
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