Heard

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  • Country
  • Subregion Name
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 53.106°S
  • 73.513°E

  • 2745 m
    9004 ft

  • 234010
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

  • Volcano
    Number

1 May-7 May 2013

According to NASA Earth Observatory (EO) an image acquired on 7 April from the Advanced Land Imager (ALI) on NASA's EO-1 satellite showed that Mawson's Peak crater on Heard Island had filled and a lava flow had traveled down the SW flank. The lava flow was visible in an image acquired on 20 April and had slightly widened just below the summit.

Source: NASA Earth Observatory



 Available Weekly Reports


2013: May
2012: October
2006: June


1 May-7 May 2013

According to NASA Earth Observatory (EO) an image acquired on 7 April from the Advanced Land Imager (ALI) on NASA's EO-1 satellite showed that Mawson's Peak crater on Heard Island had filled and a lava flow had traveled down the SW flank. The lava flow was visible in an image acquired on 20 April and had slightly widened just below the summit.

Source: NASA Earth Observatory


24 October-30 October 2012

According to Volcano Live, satellite imagery of Heard Island showed thermal anomalies on 21 and 24 September, and 10 and 19 October. NASA's Earth Observatory reported that a satellite image acquired on 13 October showed a possible dark area in the summit crater of Mawson Peak and hot surfaces within the crater, indicating the presence of lava in or just beneath the crater.

Sources: Volcano Live, NASA Earth Observatory


7 June-13 June 2006

From 11 March to 2 June, MODVOLC (a MODIS thermal alert system) detected approximately 10 alerts from or near the summit of Big Ben on Heard Island. The area of the thermal anomaly was 1 to 2 pixels in size (1 pixel=1 km).

Source: Hawai'i Institute of Geophysics and Planetology (HIGP) Thermal Alerts Team


Summary of eruption dates and Volcanic Explosivity Indices (VEI).

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
2012 Sep 5 ± 4 days 2013 Aug 3 (in or after) Confirmed 0 Historical Observations Mawson Peak
2006 Mar 11 2008 Mar 3 Confirmed 0 Historical Observations Mawson Peak
2003 Jun 9 2004 Jun 14 Confirmed 0 Historical Observations Mawson Peak
2000 Mar 7 (?) 2001 Feb Confirmed 2 Historical Observations Mawson Peak and upper south flank
1993 Jan 2 ± 15 days Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations Mawson Peak
1992 May 29 (?) Unknown Confirmed 0 Historical Observations Mawson Peak
[ 1992 Jan 17 ] [ 1992 Jan 18 ] Uncertain     Mawson Peak
1985 Jan 14 1987 Jan (?) Confirmed 2 Historical Observations Mawson Peak
1954 Apr 13 (?) 1954 Jun 13 (?) Confirmed 2 Historical Observations Mawson Peak
1953 Aug 20 1953 Nov 18 Confirmed 2 Historical Observations Mawson Peak
1950 Jan 24 1952 Mar 12 (?) Confirmed 2 Historical Observations Mawson Peak
1910 Mar 1910 Apr Confirmed 2 Historical Observations Mawson Peak
[ 1881 Jun 2 ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain 2  

The following references are the sources used for data regarding this volcano. References are linked directly to our volcano data file. Discussion of another volcano or eruption (sometimes far from the one that is the subject of the manuscript) may produce a citation that is not at all apparent from the title. Additional discussion of data sources can be found under Volcano Data Criteria.

Barling J, Goldstein S L, Nicholls I A, 1994. Geochemistry of Heard Island (Southern Indian Ocean): Characterization of an enriched mantle component and implications for enrichment of the sub-Indian Ocean mantle. J Petr, 35: 1017-1053.

LeMasurier W E, Thomson J W (eds), 1990. Volcanoes of the Antarctic Plate and Southern Oceans. Washington, D C: Amer Geophys Union, 487 p.

Neumann van Padang M, 1963a. Arabia and the Indian Ocean. Catalog of Active Volcanoes of the World and Solfatara Fields, Rome: IAVCEI, 16: 1-64.

Wheller G, 1989. . (pers. comm.).

Heard Island on the Kerguelen Plateau in the southern Indian Ocean consists primarily of the emergent portion of two volcanic structures. The large glacier-covered composite basaltic-to-trachytic cone of Big Ben comprises most of the island, and the smaller Mt. Dixon volcano lies at the NW tip of the island across a narrow isthmus. Little is known about the structure of Big Ben volcano because of its extensive ice cover. The historically active Mawson Peak forms the island's 2745-m high point and lies within a 5-6 km wide caldera breached to the SW side of Big Ben. Small satellitic scoria cones are mostly located on the northern coast. Several subglacial eruptions have been reported in historical time at this isolated volcano, but observations are infrequent and additional activity may have occurred.