Bulletin Volcanologique

, Volume 43, Issue 3, pp 577–593

Soufrière of guadeloupe 1976–1977 eruption — mass and energy transfer and volcanic health hazards

  • F. Le Guern
  • A. Bernard
  • R. M. Chevrier


The Soufrière volcano in Guadeloupe island delivered a phreatic eruption that commenced on July 8th, 1976 and lasted until March 1st, 1977. This eruption was similar to the 1797, 1798, 1809 and 1956 outbreaks. Phreatic activity ejected blocks derived from the fissure walls and fine pyroclasts produced by hydrothermal alteration of the old dome’s rocks. Field observations and measurements allowed the present authors to calculate the mass and energy transfer of steam and ashes: 107 tons of water (very low considering that on the mountain summit the annual precipitation is 10 tons m)2,106 m3 of ashes. The most important energy transfers was thermal: about 5 × 1020 ergs for each phreatic eruption. The total kinetic energy output was 2 × 1019 ergs for a total thermal energy output of 64 × 1020 ergs.

The gases and fine pyroclasts did pollute the atmosphere, waters and soils and consequently affected the population living on the slopes of the volcano.


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Copyright information

© Intern. Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth’s Interior 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. Le Guern
    • 1
  • A. Bernard
    • 3
  • R. M. Chevrier
    • 4
  1. 1.Laboratoire de VolcanologieC.F.R./C.N.R.S.Gif-sur-YvetteFrance
  2. 2.Institut de Physique du GlobeParisFrance
  3. 3.Laboratoire de GéochimieUniversité Libre de BruxellesBrusselBelgium
  4. 4.Laboratoire de Géologie appliquéeConservatoire National des Arts et MetiersParisFrance

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