The relatively inconspicuous Kelut stratovolcano contains a summit crater lake that has been the source of some of Indonesia's most deadly eruptions. A cluster of summit lava domes cut by numerous craters has given the summit a very irregular profile. Satellitic cones and lava domes are also located low on the E, W, and SSW flanks. Eruptive activity has in general migrated in a clockwise direction around the summit vent complex. More than 30 eruptions have been recorded from Gunung Kelut since 1000 CE. The ejection of water from the crater lake during the typically short but violent eruptions has created pyroclastic flows and lahars that have caused widespread fatalities and destruction. After more than 5000 people were killed during an eruption in 1919, an ambitious engineering project sought to drain the crater lake. This initial effort lowered the lake by more than 50 m, but the 1951 eruption deepened the crater by 70 m, leaving 50 million cubic meters of water after repair of the damaged drainage tunnels. After more than 200 deaths in the 1966 eruption, a new deeper tunnel was constructed, and the lake's volume before the 1990 eruption was only about 1 million cubic meters.
The broad, irregular summit of Kelut volcano contains several lava domes such as Gunung Kelut in the center of the photo, and a crater lake that has been the source of frequent violent eruptions that have caused much devastation. Construction of outlet tunnels following an eruption in 1919 in which 5110 people were killed has reduced the number of fatalities from pyroclastic flows and lahars during subsequent eruptions.
Photo by Dan Dzurisin, 1980 (U.S. Geological Survey).
Last updated 2019-11-24 05:30:03