Homer Alaska - News

Story last updated at 4:03 PM on Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Iliamna steams vapor, gases

Staff report

Scientists have measured elevated levels of sulfur dioxide and carbon dioxide coming from fumaroles on Iliamna Volcano, the Alaska Volcano Observatory said in a report last Friday. Some steaming at the highest peak of Iliamna has been visible.

A flight over Iliamna on March 17 showed the increase in gases. The elevated levels of gas come from a magmatic source, but scientists don't know if the gas comes from new magma rising to the surface or if new pathways from older magma have opened up.

Observers on the flight also saw many fumaroles, or gas vents, at the volcano summit, but no signs of recent rockfalls or exposed bedrock.

Iliamna also has shown seismic activity above background levels, but the activity is lower than earlier, the report said. The increase in activity caused AVO to raise the volcano alert level to advisory and the aviation color code to yellow earlier this month. The amount of gas being emitted is similar to levels recorded in late 1996 and early 1997, when there was a likely magmatic intrusion but no eruption.

For further information and updates, visit www.avol.alaska.edu.