Paluweh Volcano | John Seach


Paluweh Island, Indonesia

8.326 S, 121.711 E
summit elevation 875 m

Paluweh volcano forms an 8 km wide island located 15 km north of Flores. There are two craters at Paluweh volcano.

2012-13 Eruption
An increase in volcanic earthquakes were recorded at the volcano in January 2012. The alert status was increased to level 2 (out of a maximum 4). The alert status of Paluweh volcano was raised to level 2 for the second time in 2012 on 8th October. A lava dome began growing in the crater in November 2012, accompanied by ash emissions.
A high level eruption occurred at Palwueh volcano, Indonesia on 3 February 2013. Ash emissions were reported to an altitude of 45,000 ft, extending 175 nautical miles south. Satellite images showed a hotspot over the volcano on 28 and 31 January 2013.

On 11th August 2013 volcanic ash reached a height of 14,000 ft and extended 70 nautical miles west. The eruption resulted in 6 fatalities and 3000 people from Palue Island were evacuated. The paroxysmal phase of the eruption lasted 7 minutes. 

1984-85 Eruptions
Explosive eruptions at Paluweh volcano during 1984 and 1985 occurred on the west side of the lava dome.

1980-81 Eruptions
Eruptions began in November 1980 and continued intermittently to the end of January 1981. A new 40 m-diameter vent was formed in early November, located on the upper NNE flank. On 18th January renewed activity occurred at Paluweh. A hot air wave was felt by the inhabitants of two E-flank villages. About 1850 people were evacuated from the danger zone. On 31st January explosions were heard at Kota Baru, Flores Island. New eruptions occurred on 22nd August 1981. Lava and burning rocks were repeatedly erupted, and water temperatures reached 98 deg C at some places around the island. Crops and fishing boats were damaged and people were evacuated. After residents evacuated, pyroclastic flows burnt 36 buildings.

1973 Eruption
In January 1973 an eruption of Paluweh ejected ash and bombs to a height of 100 m. A large amount of vegetation was destroyed. There were about 2000 people living on the island.

1972-73 Eruption
Explosive eruptions occurred between 16th October 1972 and January 1973.

1963-66 Eruptions
An explosive eruption in between 1963 and 1966 produced pyroclastic flows, lava flows, lava dome growth, and fatalities.

1928 Eruption and Tsunami
On 4th August 1928 a violent eruption occurred at the volcano. Landslides created three waves, 5 to 10 m high, which killed at least 160 people. The eruption has been described as one of the largest eruptions between that of Novarupta (1912) and Agung (1963). The eruption of Paluweh volcano had effects on global climate, and produced a short cooling period in 1929.

Further reading
Neumann van Padang, M., 1951. Catalogue of the Active Volcanoes of the World, Including Solfatara Fields, Indonesia.

Paluweh Volcano Eruptions

2012-13, 1984-85, 1980-81, 1972-73, 1963-66, 1928, 1831?, 1650 ± 50.