Figure 3. Recent tephra deposited below the Mount Awu lava dome, 12 June 2004. For scale, note the backpack-clad person standing on fresh tephra and amid stripped vegetation in the right-central foregound. Courtesy of A. Solihin, VSI, Directorate of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation (DVMBG).
Awu volcano forms the northern end of Sangihe Island in Indonesia. The volcano is a large stratovolcano that has a historical record of violent and deadly eruptions. Both pyroclastic flows and lahars have been common during many of the historical eruptions, flowing down the deep channels that have dissected the volcano. A 4.5-km-wide summit caldera is present that has at times contained a lake. Prior to the current activity the last major eruption was in 1966, however at least one small phreatic explosion did occur in 1992. During the 1966 eruption lahars and pyroclastic flows killed more than 8000 people.