Dust flux, Vostok ice core

Dust flux, Vostok ice core
Two dimensional phase space reconstruction of dust flux from the Vostok core over the period 186-4 ka using the time derivative method. Dust flux on the x-axis, rate of change is on the y-axis. From Gipp (2001).

Friday, January 18, 2013

Sunrise in Bali

Sometime ago we had a brief article on the geological hazards of calderas. Today we visit one--Mt. Batur, a live volcano within a pair of roughly concentric calderas.

The inner caldera represents a major blast that happened about 25,000 years ago, leaving a crater about 7.5 km across.

Google maps view of Mt. Batur, Bali.

Remember that as big as the caldera is, it doesn't represent the mouth of some supervolcano. It is a violent eruption that quickly empties a large magma chamber underground, the roof of which collapses into the chamber afterwards. So the size of the caldera reflects the approximate size of the magma chamber, not the mouth of the erupting volcano.

View from southwestern rim of the larger caldera. Much of 
the rim of the inner caldera is visible in the photo.

A view of Mt. Batur from the southeast, showing two of the volcano's craters.
The blot above the left crater is on the inside of my dimestore camera.
The black area in the foreground is a recent (1968) lava flow.

Starting very early this morning (or very late last night) I climbed this to watch the sunrise over a small volcano on the edge of the caldera crater.

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When I got off the plane on Tuesday, the first thing I saw was Indonesian news on the airport TV. I don't speak the language, but the all-caps NEWMONT and the disapproving looks of the commentators told me something was up.

Unfortunately, the Balinese don't know much about it (it is elsewhere in Indonesia), except to opine that people are unhappy with Newmont. And Newmont has issued no press releases this year, so it is unclear whether this is due to some new event or is simply ongoing discontent (perhaps this, for instance).

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The devastation of dessert

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