Detailed multidisciplinary monitoring reveals pre- and co-eruptive signals at Nyamulagira volcano (North Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo)
Journal article, 2014

This paper presents a thorough description of Nyamulagira’s January 2010 volcanic eruption (North Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo), based on a combination of field observation and ground-based and space-borne data. It is the first eruption in the Virunga Volcanic Province that has been described by a combination of several modern monitoring techniques. The 2010 eruption lasted 26 days and emitted ∼45.5 × 106 m3 of lava. Field observations divided the event into four eruptive stages delimited by major changes in effusive activity. These stages are consistent with those described by Pouclet (1976) for historical eruptions of Nyamulagira. Co-eruptive signals from ground deformation, seismicity, SO2 emission and thermal flux correlate with the eruptive stages. Unambiguous pre-eruptive ground deformation was observed 3 weeks before the lava outburst, coinciding with a small but clear increase in the short period seismicity and SO2 emission. The 3 weeks of precursors contrasts with the only precursory signal previously recognized in the Virunga Volcanic Province, the short-term increase of tremor and long period seismicity, which, for example, were only detected less than 2 h prior to the 2010 eruption. The present paper is the most detailed picture of a typical flank eruption of this volcano. It provides valuable tools for re-examining former—mostly qualitative—descriptions of historical Nyamulagira eruptions that occurred during the colonial period.

VirungaNyamulagiraNyamuragiraEast African RiftVolcanic eruptionVolcano monitoringRemote sensing


Benoît Smets

Nicolas d'Oreye

François Kervyn

Matthieu Kervyn

Fabien Albino

Santiago Arellano

Chalmers, Earth and Space Sciences, Optical Remote Sensing

Montfort Bagalwa

Charles Balagizi

Simon A. Carn

Thomas H. Darrah

José Fernández

Bo Galle

Chalmers, Earth and Space Sciences, Optical Remote Sensing

Pablo J. González

Elisabet Head

Katcho Karume

Deogratias Kavotha

François Lukaya

Niche Mashagiro

Georges Mavonga

Patrik Norman

Chalmers, Earth and Space Sciences, Optical Remote Sensing

Etoy Osodundu

José L. G. Pallero

Juan F. Prieto

Sergey Samsonov

Muhindo Syauswa

Dario Tedesco

Kristy Tiampo

Christelle Wauthier

Mathieu M. Yalire

Bulletin of Volcanology

0258-8900 (ISSN) 1432-0819 (eISSN)

Vol. 76 787 1-35 787

Subject Categories

Other Earth and Related Environmental Sciences

Environmental Sciences

Geosciences, Multidisciplinary


Basic sciences



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