Scoria cones are a common type of basaltic to andesitic small-volume volcanoes (e.g. 10−1–10−5km3) that results from gas-bubble driven explosive eruptive styles. Although they are small in volume, they can produce complex eruptions, involving multiple eruptive styles. Eight scoria cones from the Quaternary Auckland Volcanic Field in New Zealand were selected to define the eruptive style variability from their volcanic facies architecture. The reconstruction of their eruptive and pyroclastic transport mechanisms was established on the basis of study of their volcanic sedimentology, stratigraphy, and measurement of their pyroclast density, porosity, Scanning Electron Microscopy, 2D particle morphology analysis and Visible and Near Visible Infrared Spectroscopy. Collection of these data allowed defining three end-member types of scoria cones inferred to be constructed from lava-fountaining, transitional fountaining and Strombolian type, and explosive Strombolian type. Using the physical and field-based characteristics of scoriaceous samples a simple generalised facies model of basaltic scoria cones for the AVF is developed that can be extended to other scoria cones elsewhere. The typical AVF scoria cone has an initial phreatomagmatic phases that might reduce the volume of magma available for subsequent scoria cone forming eruptions. This inferred to have the main reason to have decreased cone volumes recognised from Auckland in comparison to other volcanic fields evolved dominantly in dry eruptive condition (e.g. no external water influence). It suggests that such subtle eruptive style variations through a scoria cone evolution need to be integrated into the hazard assessment of a potentially active volcanic field such as that in Auckland.
Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research – Elsevier
Published: Sep 15, 2016
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