Sheveluch, Kamchatka, Russia

Location: 55.38N, 161.19E
Elevation: 8028 ft (2447m)
August 8, 2000

Sheveluch is a great stratovolcano that is the northern most active volcano in Kamchatka. Faults split this volcano into two parts. The northeast part is higher than the other and has the shape of the original volcano. This portion which is not active is covered by ice and separated from the southwest part by a large fault scarp (up to 6560 ft (2000 m). The northeastern portion of Sheveluch is a part of the ancient dome shaped volcano. It is built of very thick (up to 328 ft (100 m)), gently sloping beds of hornblende andesite on a thick mass of pyroclastic deposits.

The lower southwest portion is split by faults where volcanic activity still takes place. This part of Sheveluch has a small stratovolcano cone. This cone has a large caldera that opens to the south at its summit where most of Sheveluch's recent eruptions have taken place. Volcanic domes fill this 1.86 mile (3 km) around caldera. Several smaller cones are found on the western and southern slopes of Sheveluch's southwestern cone. Sheveluch erupted violently in 1854 and 1964.


8 August, 2000

On August 6, the seismic activity under the Sheveluch Volcano increased sharply, and an orange alert status was issued. High-frequency volcanic tremor was recorded, but gradually decreased to background level. Seismic data indicated a possible short-lived gas-ash explosion. The alert status was reduced to yellow.

This information was summarized from the Smithsonian Institution's Preliminary Notices of Volcanic Activity.


1980: In August a lava dome was observed growing in Sheveluch's summit crater. The dome continued to grow throughout 1981 reaching a height of 590 ft.(180m). During this time a gas and ash vent formed on the dome's southeastern slope and avalanched debris built up and extened 2,296 ft.(700m) down the dome's southern slope.

1984: On May 22nd a single ash cloud was ejected over a half mile(1km) into the air. This eruption made no visible changes in the lava dome's appearance.

1985: Ash was explosively ejected from the crater on May 26th, August 8th, September 19th and October 25th. During the September 19th eruption an ash cloud 2 1/2 miles (4km) high was formed.


Sources of Information:

McClelland, L.; T. Simkin, M. Summers, E. Nielsen, T. Stein, Eds.; Global Volcanism 1975-1985, Smithsonian Institute (SEAN) 1989 p. 326.

Vlodavetz, V.I., and Piip, B.I., "Catalogue of the Active Volcanoew of the World Including Solfatara Fields: Part VIII, Kamchatka and Continental Areas of Asia," International Volcanological Association, Napoli, Italy, 110 pp, 1959.



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