Makian

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  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 0.32°N
  • 127.4°E

  • 1357 m
    4451 ft

  • 268070
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

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    Number

Most Recent Weekly Report: 15 July-21 July 2009


CVGHM reported that on 16 July the Alert Level for Makian was lowered from 2 to 1 (on a scale of 1-4) because no visual changes or increased seismicity were noted. Residents and tourists were not permitted to climb Makian.

Source: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM)


Most Recent Bulletin Report: July 2009 (BGVN 34:07)


Seismicity increased during May 2009 after tectonic earthquakes

Makian remained in repose as tectonic earthquakes striking the region preceded a cluster of volcanic earthquakes during May and early June 2009. Makian lies SW of the S-central portion of Halmahera Island (in the province of Maluku Utara). Some local residents refer to the island as Mt. Kie Besi; however, it is better known under the name of Mt. Makian (other variants include Kie Besi, Makjan, Makyan, and Wakiong).

The last eruption of Makian occurred in 1988 (SEAN 13:07, 13:08, 13:10, and 13:11) and created a volcanic dome or plug on the crater floor with a diameter of 600 m and volume of ~ 282,600 m3. The 1988 eruption led to the temporary evacuation of the island's 15,000 residents (SEAN 13:07). Not previously discussed in the Bulletin, the TOMS image archive shows several SO2 clouds from the 1988 eruption (during 30 July-5 August 1988) as well as visible and infrared imagery (Sawada, 1994).

The following information was translated from a Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation (CVGHM) report dated 17 July 2009. Authorities raised the hazard status on 2 June 2009 (from normal, Alert Level 1 to 2) due to the following seismic and other observations.

The pattern of earthquakes and tremor, high for most of May 2009, decreased rapidly after the 28th (table 2). Hot explosions continued until at least mid-June from sulfurous vents on the S side of the lava dome. Emissions from these vents were off-white, with weak pressure, and they fed a plume reaching ~ 10 m above the peak.

Table 2. Seismicity recorded at Makian during 1 May-3 June 2009. Courtesy of Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation (CVGHM).

    Date               Deep volcanic      Shallow volcanic    Maximum tremor
                        earthquakes         earthquakes         amplitude

    01-28 May 2009     43 (2/day avg.)    18 (1/day avg.)     0.5-1 mm
    29-31 May 2009     7 (2/day avg.)     13 (4/day avg.)     0.5-8 mm
    01 June 2009       1                  1                   0.5-6 mm
    02-03 June 2009    1-10/day           1-4/day             --

An increase in tectonic earthquakes in the Maluku Utara (N Moluccas) region preceded the increased activity at Makian. No recent morphological changes have been observed. Based on observations up to 30 June 2009, the hazard status was downgraded to Alert Level 1 on 16 July. However, authorities still prohibited people from climbing to the peak.

The MODVOLC system had no recorded thermal alerts from Makian from at least the beginning of 2000 through August 2009.

Reference. Sawada, Y, 1994, Tracking of Regional Volcanic Ash Clouds by Geostationary Meteorological Satellite, in Volcanic Ash and Aviation Safety: Proceedings of the First International Symposium on Volcanic Ash and Aviation Safety, edited by Thomas J. Casadevall, U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 2047.

Information Contacts: Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation (CVGHM), Jalan Diponegoro 57, Bandung 40122, Indonesia (URL: http://portal.vsi.esdm.go.id/joomla/); Hawai'i Institute of Geophysics and Planetology (HIGP) Thermal Alerts System, School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST), Univ. of Hawai'i, 2525 Correa Road, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA (URL: http://hotspot.higp.hawaii.edu/).

Index of Weekly Reports


2009: May | July
2001: August

Weekly Reports


15 July-21 July 2009

CVGHM reported that on 16 July the Alert Level for Makian was lowered from 2 to 1 (on a scale of 1-4) because no visual changes or increased seismicity were noted. Residents and tourists were not permitted to climb Makian.

Source: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM)


27 May-2 June 2009

CVGHM reported that during 28 May-2 June seismicity from Makian increased, particularly the occurrence of tremor. Little, if any, increases in emissions were seen. The Alert level was raised to 2 (on a scale of 1-4).

Source: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM)


22 August-28 August 2001

VSI stated that last week's report of volcanic activity at Makian on 16 August was false. An observer mistook the glow from a bush fire as volcanic activity.

Sources: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM); Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)


15 August-21 August 2001

An eruption began at Makian on 16 August at 1930. During the eruption, chunks of incandescent lava were ejected 75 m through the air. Residents were evacuated to the S side of the island. The volcano is at Alert Level Red.

NOTE: VSI has since reported that this eruption is likely to have been a bush fire. We are seeking more information.

Source: Société Volcanologique Européenne


Index of Bulletin Reports


Reports are organized chronologically and indexed below by Month/Year (Publication Volume:Number), and include a one-line summary. Click on the index link or scroll down to read the reports.

07/1976 (NSEB 01:10) Evacuation due to possible pending eruption

09/1976 (NSEB 01:12) Investigation by volcanologists reveal no signs of activity

07/1988 (SEAN 13:07) 100-year dormancy ends with large ash eruption; 15,000 evacuated; no fatalities

08/1988 (SEAN 13:08) Weak steam emission and seismicity

10/1988 (SEAN 13:10) Satellite data on July plumes

11/1988 (SEAN 13:11) More details on July-August eruption

09/2001 (BGVN 26:09) Brush fire leads to a falsely alleged 16-17 August 2001 eruption report

07/2009 (BGVN 34:07) Seismicity increased during May 2009 after tectonic earthquakes




Bulletin Reports

All information contained in these reports is preliminary and subject to change.


07/1976 (NSEB 01:10) Evacuation due to possible pending eruption

The Jakarta Domestic Service reported on 13 June that "the Social Affairs Dept. has designated Malifut County in Kao Subdistrict, North Maluku District, as a resettlement area for 3,250 families being evacuated from Makian Island, because there is a possibility that the volcano on the island will erupt at any time."

Information Contacts: Jakarta DRS, Jakarta.

09/1976 (NSEB 01:12) Investigation by volcanologists reveal no signs of activity

Fears of renewed activity at Makian, which last erupted in 1890, stemmed from earthquakes felt in the area in 1972. Investigations carried out between January 1973 and July 1976 by GSI volcanologists indicated that the earthquakes recorded were of tectonic origin and that the volcano shows no signs of renewed activity.

Information Contacts: G. de Néve, GSI, Bandung.

07/1988 (SEAN 13:07) 100-year dormancy ends with large ash eruption; 15,000 evacuated; no fatalities

Makian emitted a white fume cloud 500 m above the summit crater on 17 July, ending a 100-year dormancy. Local residents reported a reddish glow at the cloud's base. The 15,000 residents of Makian Island were evacuated to Moti Island, 10 km N, in anticipation of a larger event similar to past violent eruptions. A NOTAM issued on 18 July at 1156 warned aircraft to avoid the area below ~2 km altitude. By 28 July, activity was limited to emission of a white fume cloud. On 29 July at 1115, a 7-km ash column was erupted, and at 1121, a larger explosion ejected an 8-km cloud. VSI monitored the eruption from its observation post on Moti Island. Smaller explosions occurred that afternoon and were continuing as of 1 August.

GMS satellite imagery first showed an eruption plume on 29 July [at] 1200, when a cloud 55 km wide and 100 km long extended SW from Makian (figure 1). Its coldest area was from -68 to -75°C, corresponding to an altitude of 14-16 km asl (figure 2). Plumes were not evident at 1800 or 2100. Small volcanic-like clouds, ~30 km wide and 130 km long, were seen from Makian to the WSW at 2100 on 30 July and 0300, 0900, 1200 on 31 July. Other small clouds seen 1-4 August may be atmospheric.

Figure 1. Portions of four infrared GMS satellite images on 29 and 31 July 1988, showing clouds that may have been erupted from Makian. Arrows indicate the clouds, apparently attached to the volcano at 1200 on 29 July and at 1200 on 31 July. Courtesy of Y. Sawada.
Figure 2. Temperature gradients in Makian's 29 July 1988 eruption cloud, measured from three GMS infrared images. The volcano is indicated by a solid triangle. Courtesy of Y. Sawada.

Information Contacts: VSI; J. Latter, DSIR Geophysics, New Zealand; Y. Sawada, JMA.

08/1988 (SEAN 13:08) Weak steam emission and seismicity

Smaller explosions continued until early August, then activity steadily decreased. Weak emissions of white steam reached more than 100 m above the crater rim during August. About 17 volcanic and seven tectonic earthquakes were registered daily.

Information Contacts: VSI.

10/1988 (SEAN 13:10) Satellite data on July plumes

New data from Japan's GMS satellite . . . . An image at 1200 on 29 July (figure 1) shows a dense plume with a surface temperature of -70°C (figure 2), suggesting an altitude of 15.2 km (table 1).

Table 1. Analysis of GMS satellite data by Yosihiro Sawada, with parameters of the 29 July Makian plume and possible eruption clouds on 31 July 1988.

Date     Local  Attached     Width  Length  Direction  Surface  Height
         time   to volcano?  (km)    (km)               Temp.   (km)

29 July  1200     yes         60     110       SW      -70°C     15.2
         1500     no          90     310      SW-W     -61°C     13.5
         1800     no          80     430      SW-W     -50°C     12.1
         2100     no          90     450      SW-W      --        --
31 July  0300     no          30     130      SW-W     -49°C     11.9
         0600     no          20      60       SW      -20°C      7.6
         0900     yes         50     210       SW      -14°C      6.8
         1200     yes         40     130      W-SW     -73°C     15.6

By the time of the next image, three hours later, the plume was detached from the volcano and was noticeably more diffuse. Possible volcanic plumes were also detected on GMS imagery returned 31 July (figures 1 and 3), but no ground reports of large eruption clouds are known at those times.

Figure 3. Temperature gradients in the clouds shown in figure 1. Makian is marked by a solid triangle. Courtesy of Y. Sawada.

Information Contacts: Y. Sawada, JMA.

11/1988 (SEAN 13:11) More details on July-August eruption

. . . . The number of shallow volcanic earthquakes began to increase sharply on 20 July. Based on seismic and visual data, VSI anticipated that an eruption would begin within two weeks, and the 15,000 residents of Makian Island were evacuated to Moti Island, ~6 km to the N.

On 28 July, 521 seismic events were recorded, and tremor began . . . at 2200. The eruption started the next morning at 1112 with a continuous thunderous explosion that was clearly heard on Moti Island. A dark ash cloud reached 8-10 km height. On 30 July at 1006, an explosion was followed by nuées ardentes that advanced E (along the Ng. Powate valley) and N (Ng. Para valley). Originating from ~1,200 m asl, the nuées ardentes descended to 250 m altitude, and some finally reached the sea. A series of smaller explosions began on 31 July and continued until 6 August, feeding ash columns that decreased from 6 to 1-2 km above the crater.

As of the first week in December, white fume was still rising weakly from the crater. Seismicity continued to decrease, with 17 tectonic and 14 volcanic earthquakes recorded 1-7 December.

Information Contacts: VSI.

09/2001 (BGVN 26:09) Brush fire leads to a falsely alleged 16-17 August 2001 eruption report

Makian was falsely alleged to have begun erupting at 1930 on 16 August 2001. The same Jakarta news article also reported that the volcano continued to spew lava on 17 August forcing residents to evacuate. The article also noted that hot ash and debris were ejected to a height of 20 m and dark clouds rose 75 m.

The Volcanological Survey of Indonesia (VSI) later indicated that the report was false. An observer had mistakenly interpreted the glow from a brush fire as volcanic activity. VSI has not reported any recent volcanic activity at Makian.

Information Contacts: Dali Ahmad, Volcanological Survey of Indonesia (VSI), Jalan Diponegoro No. 57, Bandung 40122, Indonesia (Email: dali@vsi.esdm.go.id, URL: http://www.vsi.esdm.go.id/).; Darwin VAAC, Bureau of Meteorology, Northern Territory Regional Office, PO Box 40050, Casuarina, Northern Territory 0811, Australia; Meteorological and Geophysical Agency of Indonesia (Badan Meteorologi dan Geofisika, BMG), Jalan Angkasa I/2 Kemayoran, Jakarta Pusat 10720, Indonesia (URL: http://www.bmg.go.id/), Société Volcanologique Européenne.

07/2009 (BGVN 34:07) Seismicity increased during May 2009 after tectonic earthquakes

Makian remained in repose as tectonic earthquakes striking the region preceded a cluster of volcanic earthquakes during May and early June 2009. Makian lies SW of the S-central portion of Halmahera Island (in the province of Maluku Utara). Some local residents refer to the island as Mt. Kie Besi; however, it is better known under the name of Mt. Makian (other variants include Kie Besi, Makjan, Makyan, and Wakiong).

The last eruption of Makian occurred in 1988 (SEAN 13:07, 13:08, 13:10, and 13:11) and created a volcanic dome or plug on the crater floor with a diameter of 600 m and volume of ~ 282,600 m3. The 1988 eruption led to the temporary evacuation of the island's 15,000 residents (SEAN 13:07). Not previously discussed in the Bulletin, the TOMS image archive shows several SO2 clouds from the 1988 eruption (during 30 July-5 August 1988) as well as visible and infrared imagery (Sawada, 1994).

The following information was translated from a Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation (CVGHM) report dated 17 July 2009. Authorities raised the hazard status on 2 June 2009 (from normal, Alert Level 1 to 2) due to the following seismic and other observations.

The pattern of earthquakes and tremor, high for most of May 2009, decreased rapidly after the 28th (table 2). Hot explosions continued until at least mid-June from sulfurous vents on the S side of the lava dome. Emissions from these vents were off-white, with weak pressure, and they fed a plume reaching ~ 10 m above the peak.

Table 2. Seismicity recorded at Makian during 1 May-3 June 2009. Courtesy of Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation (CVGHM).

    Date               Deep volcanic      Shallow volcanic    Maximum tremor
                        earthquakes         earthquakes         amplitude

    01-28 May 2009     43 (2/day avg.)    18 (1/day avg.)     0.5-1 mm
    29-31 May 2009     7 (2/day avg.)     13 (4/day avg.)     0.5-8 mm
    01 June 2009       1                  1                   0.5-6 mm
    02-03 June 2009    1-10/day           1-4/day             --

An increase in tectonic earthquakes in the Maluku Utara (N Moluccas) region preceded the increased activity at Makian. No recent morphological changes have been observed. Based on observations up to 30 June 2009, the hazard status was downgraded to Alert Level 1 on 16 July. However, authorities still prohibited people from climbing to the peak.

The MODVOLC system had no recorded thermal alerts from Makian from at least the beginning of 2000 through August 2009.

Reference. Sawada, Y, 1994, Tracking of Regional Volcanic Ash Clouds by Geostationary Meteorological Satellite, in Volcanic Ash and Aviation Safety: Proceedings of the First International Symposium on Volcanic Ash and Aviation Safety, edited by Thomas J. Casadevall, U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 2047.

Information Contacts: Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation (CVGHM), Jalan Diponegoro 57, Bandung 40122, Indonesia (URL: http://portal.vsi.esdm.go.id/joomla/); Hawai'i Institute of Geophysics and Planetology (HIGP) Thermal Alerts System, School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST), Univ. of Hawai'i, 2525 Correa Road, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA (URL: http://hotspot.higp.hawaii.edu/).

Makian volcano forms a 10-km-wide island near the southern end of a chain of volcanic islands off the west coast of Halmahera and has been the source of infrequent, but violent eruptions that have devastated villages on the island. The large 1.5-km-wide summit crater, containing a small lake on the NE side, gives the 1357-m-high peak a flat-topped profile. Two prominent valleys extend to the coast from the summit crater on the north and east sides. Four parasitic cones are found on the western flanks. Eruption have been recorded since about 1550; major eruptions in 1646, 1760-61, 1861-62, 1890, and 1988 caused extensive damage and many fatalities.

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

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
1988 Jul 29 1988 Aug 5 Confirmed 3 Historical Observations
1890 Jun 20 1890 Jun 30 Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1864 Oct 1864 Oct Confirmed 1 Historical Observations
1863 Aug 25 1863 Aug 31 Confirmed 1 Historical Observations
1861 Dec 28 1862 Oct Confirmed 4 Historical Observations
[ 1860 ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain 1  
[ 1854 Jun 18 ] [ 1854 Jun 18 ] Uncertain 1  
1760 Sep 22 1761 Apr 30 (in or after) Confirmed 4 Historical Observations
[ 1660 ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    
1646 Jul 19 1646 Jul 21 Confirmed 4 Historical Observations
[ 1608 ] [ 1609 ] Discredited    
1550 (in or before) Unknown Confirmed 3 Historical Observations

This compilation of synonyms and subsidiary features may not be comprehensive. Features are organized into four major categories: Cones, Craters, Domes, and Thermal Features. Synonyms of features appear indented below the primary name. In some cases additional feature type, elevation, or location details are provided.


Synonyms

Wakiong | Makjan | Makyan | Kie Besi
Makian volcano, one of a chain of islands off the western coast of Halmahera Island, has been the source of infrequent, but violent eruptions that have devastated villages on the 10-km-wide island. The large summit crater containing a small crater lake on the NE side is drained by two steep-walled valleys. The northern valley, Barranco Ngopagita is seen in this view from the NW.

Photo by Ruska Hadian, 1985 (Volcanological Survey of Indonesia).
A vigorous eruption column rises above Makian volcano in this 1988 view from neighboring Moti Island. The six-day eruption began on July 29, producing eruption columns that reached 8-10 km altitude. Pyroclastic flows on the 30th reached the coast of the island, whose 15,000 residents had been evacuated. A flat-topped lava dome was extruded in the summit crater at the conclusion of the eruption.

Photo by Willem Rohi, 1988 (Volcanological Survey of Indonesia).
A vigorous eruption column rises above Indonesia's Makian volcano in this July 31, 1988, view from neighboring Moti Island. The six-day eruption began on July 29, producing eruption columns that reached 8-10 km altitude. Pyroclastic flows on the 30th reached the coast of the island, whose 15,000 residents had been evacuated. A flat-topped lava dome was extruded in the summit crater at the conclusion of the eruption.

Photo by Willem Rohi, 1988 (Volcanological Survey of Indonesia).
Makian volcano forms a 10-km-wide island near the southern end of a chain of volcanic islands off the western coast of Halmahera. The northern of two prominent valleys that extend from the summit is prominent in this photo. The large 1.5-km-wide summit crater containing a small lake on the NE side gives the 1357-m-high peak a flat-topped profile. Violent eruptions from Makian volcano, also known as Kie Besi, have devastated villages on the island.

Photo by Sumaryono (Volcanological Survey of Indonesia).

The following references have all been used during the compilation of data for this volcano, it is not a comprehensive bibliography. 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.

Kusumadinata K, 1979. Data Dasar Gunungapi Indonesia. Bandung: Volc Surv Indonesia, 820 p.

Matahelumual J, 1986a. G Makian. Bull Volc Surv Indonesia, 110: 1-37 (in Indonesian).

Morris J D, Jezek P A, Hart S R, Gill J B, 1983. The Halmahera Island arc, Molucca Sea collision zone, Indonesia: a geochemical survey. In: Hayes D E (ed) The Tectonic and Geologic Evolution of Southeast Asia Seas and Islands, part 2, {Amer Geophys Union, Geophys Monogr}, 27: 373-387.

Neumann van Padang M, 1951. Indonesia. Catalog of Active Volcanoes of the World and Solfatara Fields, Rome: IAVCEI, 1: 1-271.

Sudradjat A, 1977. . (pers. comm.).

Volcano Types

Stratovolcano
Pyroclastic cone(s)

Tectonic Setting

Subduction zone
Oceanic crust (< 15 km)

Rock Types

Major
Andesite / Basaltic Andesite
Basalt / Picro-Basalt

Population

Within 5 km
Within 10 km
Within 30 km
Within 100 km
4,986
8,466
21,360
441,768

Affiliated Databases

Large Eruptions of Makian Information about large Quaternary eruptions (VEI >= 4) is cataloged in the Large Magnitude Explosive Volcanic Eruptions (LaMEVE) database of the Volcano Global Risk Identification and Analysis Project (VOGRIPA).
WOVOdat WOVOdat is a database of volcanic unrest; instrumentally and visually recorded changes in seismicity, ground deformation, gas emission, and other parameters from their normal baselines. It is sponsored by the World Organization of Volcano Observatories (WOVO) and presently hosted at the Earth Observatory of Singapore.
EarthChem EarthChem develops and maintains databases, software, and services that support the preservation, discovery, access and analysis of geochemical data, and facilitate their integration with the broad array of other available earth science parameters. EarthChem is operated by a joint team of disciplinary scientists, data scientists, data managers and information technology developers who are part of the NSF-funded data facility Integrated Earth Data Applications (IEDA). IEDA is a collaborative effort of EarthChem and the Marine Geoscience Data System (MGDS).
Smithsonian Collections Search the Smithsonian's NMNH Department of Mineral Sciences collections database. Go to the "Search Rocks and Ores" tab and use the Volcano Name drop-down to find samples.