Inflation-predictable behavior and co-eruption deformation at Axial Seamount

TitleInflation-predictable behavior and co-eruption deformation at Axial Seamount
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsNooner, SL, Jr., WWChadwick
Date Publisheddec
Type of ArticleArticle
KeywordsAUV Sentry (Autonomous Underwater Vehicle), ROV Jason (Remotely Operated Vehicle)

Deformation of the ground surface at active volcanoes provides information about magma movements at depth. Improved seafloor deformation measurements between 2011 and 2015 documented a fourfold increase in magma supply and confirmed that Axial Seamount's eruptive behavior is inflation-predictable, probably triggered by a critical level of magmatic pressure. A 2015 eruption was successfully forecast on the basis of this deformation pattern and marked the first time that deflation and tilt were captured in real time by a new seafloor cabled observatory, revealing the timing, location, and volume of eruption-related magma movements. Improved modeling of the deformation suggests a steeply dipping prolate-spheroid pressure source beneath the eastern caldera that is consistent with the location of the zone of highest melt within the subcaldera magma reservoir determined from multichannel seismic results.