Banda Api Volcano | John Seach


Banda Sea, Maluku Province, Indonesia

4.525 S, 129.871 E
summit elevation 640 m

Banda Api Island is an isolated volcano located in the Banda Sea, Indonesia, 130 km south of Makulu Island. Banda Api is located in a 7 km wide caldera, which has three islands as the southern and eastern walls. These are Lonthor, Pisang and Kapal. Historical activity has consisted of strombolian eruptions and occasional lava flows which have reached the sea. Banda Api volcano rises 4000 m from the sea floor. During a scientific expedition in 1984, low temperature fumarolic gas streamed faintly from the vents at the northern crater.

2012 Earthquake
A magnitude 6.3 earthquake hit 80 km west of Banda Api volcano on 8th October 2012. The epicentre was at a depth of 35 km.

1988 Eruption
An explosive eruption occurred at the volcano on 9th May 1988. A 3 km high plume was produced, and large incandescent blocks were ejected. Lava flowed east towards Neira Island. The eruption originated from a line of five craters that cross the summit. Every few minutes earthquakes were felt at Neira village, 2 km east of the craters, during 8-10 May. The eruption caused the evacuation of 1800 residents to Neira Island and Lontar Island, and 5,000 of Neira city's residents were evacuated to safer areas. Satellite observations showed eruption clouds reached an altitude of 16 km. The eruption ended in August 1988.

1901 Eruption
The eruption was accompanied by a lava flow.

Further reading
Heikoop, J.M., Tsujita, C.J., Risk, M.J. and Tomascik, T., 1996. Corals as proxy recorders of volcanic activity: evidence from Banda Api, Indonesia. Palaios, pp.286-292.

Wheller, G. E., et al. "Geochemistry of Quaternary volcanism in the Sunda-Banda arc, Indonesia, and three-component genesis of island-arc basaltic magmas." Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research 32.1-3 (1987): 137-160

Banda Api Volcano Eruptions

1988, 1901, 1890, 1855, 1835, 1825?, 1824, 1820, 1816, 1778, 1775, 1773,
1765, 1762, 1749, 1722, 1712, 1690, 1683, 1635, 1632, 1615, 1614?, 1609, 1598, 1586.