Eruptions

Sounds like we’re beginning to get a better idea of what is erupting in Ethiopia. Ghezahegn Yirgu, a geologist at Addis Ababa University, reports that Dalla Filla Dalaffilla Volcano is the source of the eruption. Again, the eruption is being characterized as “lava flows” rather than an explosive eruption, which may be surprising considering the amount of volcanic gases being released (see Boris Bechnke’s highly useful comment). However, some mostly effusive eruptions have released a lot of volcanic gases in the past – see Laki, Iceland in 1783 – so a preponderance of flows at Dalla Filla Dalaffilla would not be shocking. 

Now, there is surprisingly little information I can find about Dalla Filla – in fact, it doesn’t even appear in the GVP database or, for that matter, almost anywhere on the internet. The volcano is located, according to the article linked above, about 20 km north of Erta Ale, so it is in a region of active East African Rift volcanism. The map above (from the USGS) shows all the volcanoes in the area that have known eruptions since 1800, so unless Dalla Filla is being confused with Dallol, it might be the first eruption of the volcano in quite some time. I’ll update once I can find more information on Dalla Filla (and feel free to comment here if you know more than I).

REVISED (11/6/08): Apparently, the volcano in question is Dalaffilla, which shows up in the GVP website (Thanks Ole and Ron). There isn’t much information on Dalaffilla, except that, surprisingly, it appears to be a silicic volcano. The reports I’ve read so far seem to indicate that lava flows have spread out over a large area, which would suggest a low viscosity (i.e., basaltic) lava. Thanks to the Eruptions readers who dug out some great information.

Comments

  1. #1 Ole
    November 6, 2008

    According to a German map in Taschen Atlas, Vulkane und Erdbeben, Klett-perthes Verlag, Dalafilla is situated somewhere between Erta Ale and Dalloi.

    I have temporarily posted a scan of the map at
    http://whatonearth.olehnielsen.dk/img/Dalafilla.png

    Hope that helps!

    Ole of Olelog

  2. #2 Ron Schott
    November 6, 2008

    You seem to be relying exclusively on the USGS for you volcano names in this region. Perhaps you should consult the Volcanoes layer in Google Earth (under the “Gallery” layer, which draws on the Smithsonian Institution’s Global Volcanism Program data. It shows a number of other volcanoes in the region of interest including Alu, which seems to be a good candidate for this eruption.

  3. #3 Ole
    November 6, 2008

    The volcano is also known as Dalaffillla – picture (Smithsonian) here
    http://www.volcano.si.edu/world/volcano.cfm?vnum=0201-07=&volpage=photos&photo=099007
    Google gives ca. 400 hits.

    Ole

  4. #4 Oakden Wolf
    November 7, 2008

    Behncke’s comment on the other post about the eruption mentions Dabbahu and Manda Harraro as recent eruptions in the Afar. Isn’t the island in the Red Sea that erupted last October (Jabal al-Tair) on an extension of the same rift system? I thought of it when I saw the map in the first comment here.

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