Irruputuncu

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  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 20.73°S
  • 68.55°W

  • 5163 m
    16935 ft

  • 355040
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

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    Number

Most Recent Bulletin Report: January 1997 (BGVN 22:01)


Minor, late-1995 eruption; the first unambiguous modern report

In the course of field work on volcanic rocks in the region, Anita Grunder observed a dark, vertical plume coming from the top of Irruputuncu at about 1000 on 26 November 1995. This dark plume lasted a few minutes, then returned to a white plume, and then again became dark and returned to white. The dark plume was dark gray to black and of the same puffy form as the white plume. The plumes dispersed very slowly to the E and the column height was same whether black or white. It was hard to judge the column size, but it seemed perhaps a few times the relief of the volcano suggesting they were kilometers tall. Grunder's field assistant, Maximino Burotto Huerta, said he had seen similar behavior on 1 September. Ordinarily, either a white wisp of steam or nothing is seen emanating from the peak. The sighting on 26 November was from ~30 km SSE, not far from the village of Ujina.

Grunder was in the area for 31 days between 24 August and 5 December 1995, though typically not in sight of the volcano. She observed no plumes on 27 November and 1-5 December 1995. These observations suggested that the activity consisted of modest phreatic eruptions.

Available literature lacks clear documentation of any historical Irruputuncu eruptions. The stratovolcano was the subject of unconfirmed press reports of an eruption in December 1989, but when visited by a state geologist on 25 March 1990 he found only fumarolic activity (BGVN 15:03). Irruputuncu sits within the collapse scarp related to a Holocene debris avalanche. There are two summit craters, the southernmost of which has been fumarolically active.

Information Contacts: Anita Grunder, Department of Geosciences, 104 Wilkinson Hall, Oregon State University, Corvallis OR 97331, USA (Email: grundera@ava.bcc.orst.edu).

The Global Volcanism Program has no Weekly Reports available for Irruputuncu.

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.

03/1990 (BGVN 15:03) Eruption reported by press but geologist observes only fumarolic activity

01/1997 (BGVN 22:01) Minor, late-1995 eruption; the first unambiguous modern report




Bulletin Reports

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


03/1990 (BGVN 15:03) Eruption reported by press but geologist observes only fumarolic activity

December press reports in Bolivia of an eruption . . .[located 25 km NNW of Olca Volcano] remain unconfirmed, and attempts by Bolivian geologists to fly over the volcano in January were stymied by poor weather. State oil company (ENAP) geologist Patricio Sepulveda reported only normal fumarolic activity at Irruputuncu on 25 March.

Information Contacts: J. Naranjo, SERNAGEOMIN.

01/1997 (BGVN 22:01) Minor, late-1995 eruption; the first unambiguous modern report

In the course of field work on volcanic rocks in the region, Anita Grunder observed a dark, vertical plume coming from the top of Irruputuncu at about 1000 on 26 November 1995. This dark plume lasted a few minutes, then returned to a white plume, and then again became dark and returned to white. The dark plume was dark gray to black and of the same puffy form as the white plume. The plumes dispersed very slowly to the E and the column height was same whether black or white. It was hard to judge the column size, but it seemed perhaps a few times the relief of the volcano suggesting they were kilometers tall. Grunder's field assistant, Maximino Burotto Huerta, said he had seen similar behavior on 1 September. Ordinarily, either a white wisp of steam or nothing is seen emanating from the peak. The sighting on 26 November was from ~30 km SSE, not far from the village of Ujina.

Grunder was in the area for 31 days between 24 August and 5 December 1995, though typically not in sight of the volcano. She observed no plumes on 27 November and 1-5 December 1995. These observations suggested that the activity consisted of modest phreatic eruptions.

Available literature lacks clear documentation of any historical Irruputuncu eruptions. The stratovolcano was the subject of unconfirmed press reports of an eruption in December 1989, but when visited by a state geologist on 25 March 1990 he found only fumarolic activity (BGVN 15:03). Irruputuncu sits within the collapse scarp related to a Holocene debris avalanche. There are two summit craters, the southernmost of which has been fumarolically active.

Information Contacts: Anita Grunder, Department of Geosciences, 104 Wilkinson Hall, Oregon State University, Corvallis OR 97331, USA (Email: grundera@ava.bcc.orst.edu).

Irruputuncu is a small stratovolcano that straddles the Chile/Bolivia border. It is the youngest and most southerly of a NE-SW-trending chain of volcanoes. Irruputuncu was constructed within the collapse scarp of a Holocene debris avalanche whose deposit extends to the SW. Subsequent eruptions filled much of this scarp and produced thick, viscous lava flows down the western flank. The summit complex contains two craters, the southernmost of which is fumarolically active. The first unambiguous historical eruption from Irruputuncu took place in November 1995, when phreatic explosions produced dark ash clouds.

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

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
1995 Sep 1 1995 Sep 26 Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
[ 1989 Dec ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    

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

Irruputunco | Iruputuncu
Steam rises from the fumarolically active southern summit crater of Irruputuncu, a small stratovolcano that straddles the Chile/Bolivia border. Irruputuncu, seen here from the WSW, was constructed within the collapse scarp of a Holocene debris avalanche whose deposit extends to the SW. Levees of viscous lava flows down the western flank of an edifice that was constructed within this scarp are seen at the lower left. The first unambiguous historical eruption from Irruputuncu took place in November 1995.

Photo by José Naranjo, 2001 (Servico Nacional de Geologica y Mineria).

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.

Banks N G, 1991. . (pers. comm.).

Casertano L, 1963a. Chilean Continent. Catalog of Active Volcanoes of the World and Solfatara Fields, Rome: IAVCEI, 15: 1-55.

de Silva S L, Francis P W, 1991. Volcanoes of the Central Andes. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 216 p.

Gonzalez-Ferran O, 1995. Volcanes de Chile. Santiago: Instituto Geografico Militar, 635 p.

Smithsonian Institution-GVN, 1990-. [Monthly event reports]. Bull Global Volc Network, v 15-33.

Volcano Types

Stratovolcano

Tectonic Setting

Subduction zone
Continental crust (> 25 km)

Rock Types

Major
Andesite / Basaltic Andesite

Population

Within 5 km
Within 10 km
Within 30 km
Within 100 km
68
239
2,852
16,017

Affiliated Databases

Large Eruptions of Irruputuncu 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.