Santa Maria Volcano, Guatemala
The eruption of Santa Maria volcano in 1902 was one of the largest
eruptions of the 20th century, forming a large crater on the mountains
southwest flank. Since 1922, a lava-dome complex, Santiaguito, has been
forming in the 1902 crater. Growth of the dome has produced pyroclastic
flows as recently as the 2001they can be identified in this image.
The city of Quezaltenango (approximately 90,000 people in 1989) sits
below the 3772 m summit. The volcano is considered dangerous because of
the possibility of a dome collapse such as one that occurred in 1929,
which killed about 5000 people. A second hazard results from the flow
of volcanic debris into rivers south of Santiaguito, which can lead to
catastrophic flooding and mud flows.
More information on this volcano can be found at web sites maintained by the Smithsonian Institution, Volcano World, and Michigan Tech University.
This image originally appeared on the Earth Observatory. Click here to view the full, original record.