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Encyclopedia > Galeras
Galeras

Elevation: 4,276 metres (14,029 feet)
Location: Colombia
Range: Andes
Coordinates: 1°13′0″N, 77°22′0″W
Type: Stratovolcano
Age of rock:
Last eruption: 2005

Galeras is a volcano in Colombia, near the city of Pasto. Its summit lies 14,029 feet (4276 m) above sea level. It has erupted frequently since the Spanish conquest, and in 1993, an eruption killed nine people, including five scientists who had descended into the volcano's crater to sample gases. Image File history File links Galeras volcano, Colombia. ... A topographical summit is a point on a surface which is higher in elevation than all points immediately adjacent to it. ... The most general definition of a mountain range is a group of mountains bordered by lowlands. ... The Andes between Chile and Argentina Computer generated image of the Andes, made from a digital elevation model with a resolution of 30 arcseconds The Andes is a vast mountain system forming a continuous chain of highland along the western coast of South America. ... Map of Earth showing lines of latitude (horizontally) and longitude (vertically); large version (pdf) The geographic (earth-mapping) coordinate system expresses every horizontal position on Earth by two of the three coordinates of a spherical coordinate system which is aligned with the spin axis of the Earth. ... Mountains can be characterized in several ways. ... Stratovolcano Lanín in the border between Argentina and Chile. ... The geologic time scale is used by geologists and other scientists to describe the timing and relationships between events that have occurred during the history of the Earth. ... Eruption redirects here. ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Eruption redirects here. ... Pasto is the capital of the department of Nariño, located in southwest Colombia. ... For considerations of sea level change, in particular rise associated with possible global warming, see sea level rise. ... Spanish colonization of the Americas began with the arrival in the Americas of Christopher Columbus in 1492. ... 1993 (MCMXCIII) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar and marked the Beginning of the International Decade to Combat Racism and Racial Discrimination (1993-2003). ...

Contents


Geological history

Galeras has been an active volcano for at least a million years. Two major caldera-forming eruptions have occurred, the first about 560,000 years ago in an eruption which expelled about 15 cubic kilometres of material, and the second some time between 40,000 and 150,000 years ago, in a smaller but still sizable eruption of 2km³ of material. Subsequently, part of the caldera wall has collapsed, probably due to instabilities caused by hydrothermal activity, and later eruptions have built up a smaller cone inside the now horseshoe-shaped caldera. Crater Lake, Oregon A caldera is a volcanic feature formed by the collapse of a volcano into itself. ... Modern horseshoes are most commonly made of iron and nailed onto the hoof. ...


At least six large eruptions have occurred in the last 5000 years, most recently in 1886, and there have been at least 20 small to medium sized eruptions since the 1500s. In light of its violent eruption history and proximity to the 300,000 people of Pasto, Galeras was designated a Decade Volcano in 1991, identifying it as a target for detailed study as part of the United Nations' International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction. 1886 is a common year starting on Friday (click on link to calendar) // Events January 18 - Modern field hockey is born with the formation of The Hockey Association in England. ... A map showing locations of the 16 Decade Volcanoes The Decade Volcanoes are 16 volcanoes identified by the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earths Interior (IAVCEI) as being worthy of particular study in light of their history of large, destructive eruptions and proximity to populated areas. ... 1991 (MCMXCI) is a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Main article: League of Nations The term United Nations was coined by Franklin D. Roosevelt during World War II, to refer to the Allies. ...


1993 eruption

Galeras had become active in 1988 after 10 years of dormancy. In 1993, the volcano erupted when several volcanologists were inside the crater taking measurements. The scientists had been visiting Pasto for a conference related to the volcano's designation as a Decade Volcano. Six were killed, together with three tourists on the rim of the crater. Stanley Williams was one of the survivors. He suffered serious injuries after being struck by lava bombs, but was rescued from the crater some hours later. 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on a Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1993 (MCMXCIII) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar and marked the Beginning of the International Decade to Combat Racism and Racial Discrimination (1993-2003). ... Volcanology (also spelled vulcanology) is the study of volcanoes, lava, magma and related geological phenomena. ... Volcanic bombs are globules of melted rock (tephra) larger than 2. ...


Williams later wrote a book about his ordeal, entitled Surviving Galeras. However, controversy has since surrounded many of his claims. Detractors claim that his aim was to glorify himself, to the extent of claiming to be the only survivor among those on the mountain that day, when in fact seven others survived. It is also claimed that Williams ignored clear signs that an eruption was imminent, thus placing himself and others in danger unnecessarily.


Current activity

Space radar image of Galeras Volcano
Space radar image of Galeras Volcano

Activity at a low level has continued at Galeras, with small explosions occasionally dusting nearby villages and towns with ash. The volcano has continued to be well studied, and predictions of eruptions at the volcano have improved. One phenomenon which seems to be a reliable precursor to eruptive activity is a low-frequency seismic event known as a 'tornillo'. These have occurred before about four-fifths of the explosions at Galeras, and the number of tornillo events recorded before an eruption is also correlated with the size of the ensuing eruption. More than 100 minor tremors were felt during a major eruption in April, 2002, although no damage or injury was reported. Image File history File links Galeras_volcano. ... Image File history File links Galeras_volcano. ... Diamond Head, a well-known backdrop to Waikiki in Hawaii, is an ash cone that solidified into tuff Volcanic ash is the term for very fine rock and mineral particles less than 2 mm in diameter that are ejected from a volcanic vent. ... Seismology (from the Greek seismos = earthquake and logos = word) is the scientific study of earthquakes and the movement of waves through the Earth. ... In probability theory and statistics, correlation, also called correlation coefficient, is a numeric measure of the strength of linear relationship between two random variables. ... Look up April in Wiktionary, the free dictionary April is the fourth month of the year in the Gregorian Calendar and one of four with the length of 30 days. ... 2002 (MMII) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


An eruption in November, 2005, forced an evacuation of Pasto, about 12 miles from the volcano. The city was blanketed by a layer of ash after Galeras blew, forcing the remaining residents to don goggles and face masks. For other uses, see November (disambiguation). ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Pasto is the capital of the department of Nariño, located in southwest Colombia. ...


References

  1. Marta Lucia Calvache V., Gloria Patricia Cortés, Stanley N. Williams (1997), Stratigraphy and chronology of the Galeras volcanic complex, Colombia, Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, v. 77, p.5
  2. Peter J. Baxter, Austin Gresham (1997), Deaths and injuries in the eruption of Galeras Volcano, Colombia, 14 January 1993, Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, v. 77, p.325-338
  3. Lourdes Narváez M., Roberto A. Torres C., Diego M. Gómez M., Gloria Patricia Cortés J., Héctor Cepeda V., John Stix (1997), 'Tornillo'-type seismic signals at Galeras volcano, Colombia, 1992-1993, Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, v. 77, p. 159

External links

  1. BBC on the November 2005 eruption.

External links

  • VolcanoWorld information
  • Information from the Instituto Colombiano de Geología y Minería

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