Short-term spatial change in a volcanic tremor source during the 2011 Kirishima eruption

Satoshi Matsumoto, Hiroshi Shimizu, Takeshi Matsushima, Kenji Uehira, Yusuke Yamashita, Manami Nakamoto, Masahiro Miyazaki, Hiromi Chikura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Volcanic tremors are indicators of magmatic behavior, which is strongly related to volcanic eruptions and activity. Detection of spatial and temporal variations in the source location is important for understanding the mechanism of volcanic eruptions. However, short-term temporal variations within a tremor event have not always been detected by seismic array observations around volcanoes. Here, we show that volcanic tremor sources were activated at both the top (i.e., the crater) and the lower end of the conduit, by analyzing seismograms from a dense seismic array 3 km from the Shinmoedake crater, Kirishima volcano, Japan. We observed changes in the seismic ray direction during a volcanic tremor sequence, and inferred two major sources of the tremor from the slowness vectors of the approaching waves. One was located in a shallow region beneath the Shinmoedake crater. The other was found in a direction N30°W from the array, pointing to a location above a pressure source. The fine spatial and temporal characteristics of volcanic tremors suggest an interaction between deep and shallow conduits.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)323-329
Number of pages7
Journalearth, planets and space
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geology
  • Space and Planetary Science


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