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Volcanoes in Indonesia

The geography of Indonesia is dominated by volcanoes that are formed due to subduction zones between the Eurasian plate and the Indo-Australian plate. Some of the volcanoes are notable for their eruptions, for instance, Krakatau for its global effects in 1883, Lake Toba for its supervolcanic eruption estimated to have occurred 74,000 Before Present which was responsible for six years of volcanic winter, and Mount Tambora for the most violent eruption in recorded history in 1815.


Volcanoes in Indonesia
Volcanoes in Indonesia

Volcanoes in Indonesia are a part of the Pacific Ring of Fire. The 150 entries in the list below are grouped into six geographical regions, four of which belong to the volcanoes of the Sunda Arc trench system. The remaining two groups are volcanoes of Halmahera, including its surrounding volcanic islands, and volcanoes of Sulawesi and the Sangihe Islands. The latter group is in one volcanic arc together with the Philippines volcanoes.

The most active volcanoes are Kelut and Merapi on Java island which have been responsible for thousands of deaths in the region. Since AD 1000, Kelut has erupted more than 30 times, of which the largest eruption was at scale 5 on the Volcanic Explosivity Index (VEI), while Merapi has erupted more than 80 times. The International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior has named Merapi as a Decade Volcano since 1995 because of its high volcanic activity.

Interactive volcano map

Indahnesia.com has it's own interactive volcano map where you can look at the current status of dozens of volcanoes throughout the Indonesian archipelago. Diaily updates are made to the map if needed, so the most recent information will be available here at all times.
Volcanic activity map

Major eruptions in Indonesia

On the page 'Major eruptions in Indonesia' in the right menu is a list of selected major eruptions of volcanoes in Indonesia, sorted chronologically by the starting date of the eruption. Only eruptions with scale 3 or above on VEI are given with known sources and fatalities, except if smaller scale eruptions resulted some fatalities.

Scope

There is no single standard definition for volcanoes. A volcano can be defined from individual vents, volcanic edificies or volcanic fields. Interior of ancient volcanoes may have been eroded, creating a new subsurface magma chamber as a separate volcano. Many contemporary active volcanoes rise as young parasitic cones from flank vents or at a central crater.

Some volcanic cones are grouped into one volcano name, for instance, the Tengger caldera complex, although individual vents are named by local people. The status of a volcano, either active or dormant, cannot be defined precisely. An indication of a volcano is determined by either its historical records, radiocarbon dating, or geothermal activities.

The primary source of the list below is taken from the "Volcanoes of the World" book, compiled by two volcanologists Tom Simkin and Lee Siebert, in which active volcanoes in the past 10,000 years (Holocene) are listed. Particularly for Indonesia, Simkin and Siebert used a catalogue of active volcanoes from the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior publication series.

The Simkin and Siebert list is the most complete list of volcanoes in Indonesia, but the accuracy of the record varies from one region to another in terms of contemporary activities and fatalities in recent eruptions. Complementary sources for the latest volcanic data are taken from the Volcanological Survey of Indonesia, a governmental institution which is responsible for volcanic activities and geological hazard mitigation in Indonesia, and some academic resources.


All text in this article is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License
Last revised on November 11, 2009
    
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