Mount St. Helens Volcano could erupt in future, but not anytime soon

St. Helens Volcano is likely to prepare for eruption, but not anytime soon

The Pacific Northwest Seismic Network has detected more than 130 small intensity earthquakes under Mount St. Helens since March 14. The low-magnitude earthquakes suggest scientists that they are activating Mount St. Helens volcano for another eruption. There may have been more earthquakes, but were minor enough to be non-detectable. The rate of earthquakes has been increasing gradually, and reached to almost 40 quakes per week.

The US Geological Survey (USGS) revealed that underneath the silent Washington volcano, many earthquakes are occurring, but their magnitude is not that great and that they are occurring at a depth between 1.2 to 4 miles below Earth's surface that makes them unable to be felt above ground. The least magnitude of resultant tremors is 0.5 or less, while largest magnitude detected is 1.3.

This is concluded that these earthquakes may indicate the possibility for building up of new magna under the Mount St. Helens volcanic zone. These quakes below ground are volcano-tectonic in nature. Such quakes usually occur in active hydrothermal and magmatic systems, which are surrounded by hot gasses, hot water and, of course, magma.

These quakes slowly recharge the volcano and as a result magma chamber may put its own stresses on the Earth's crust all over. The stresses push fluid through cracks, which creates the small tremors. Though this all indicate that the volcano under the Mount St. Helens is preparing for eruption, but that is not going to happen in near future.

"Recharge swarms in the 1990s had much higher earthquake rates and energy release. No anomalies games, increases in ground inflation or shallow seismicity have been detected with this swarm, and there are no signs of an imminent eruption", said the USGS.

A report published in My Northwest revealed, "A series of small earthquakes under Mount St. Helens are believed to be "volcano-tectonic in nature," the United State Geological Survey reports. The minor quakes have occurred beneath Helens over the last eight weeks. They began March 14, the USGS reports."

"The magma chamber is likely imparting its own stresses on the crust around and above it, as the system slowly recharges," information from USGS reads "The stress drives fluids through cracks, producing the small quakes."

"Scientists have detected a swarm of low-magnitude earthquakes beneath Mount St. Helens since last month, an occurrence that has researchers believing it's recharging its batteries for another eruption. According to the US Geological Survey (USGS), since March 14, there have been more than 130 earthquakes detected by the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network. There have also been many more quakes that were too small to find," according to a news report published by Weather.

The quakes underneath Mount St. Helens are volcano-tectonic in nature, which indicates a slip on a small fault, according to USGS. These usually take place in active hydrothermal and magmatic systems, which means it's surrounded by hot gasses, hot water and, of course, magma. As the volcano slowly recharges, the magma chamber is likely imparting its own stresses on the Earth's crust around and above it.

According to a report in KITV by Madison Park, "Seismologists reported that there are no anomalous gases, and no signs that the collection of magma, which is the molten rock beneath the surface of the Earth, is getting inflated in the recent swarm of earthquakes at the volcano. Although there are no signs of an imminent eruption, the volcano is recharging, scientists say."

The earthquakes have been measured at a magnitude of 0.5 or less and the largest was at 1.3. They've been measured about 1.2 to four miles underneath the surface. With such small magnitudes and such depths, you wouldn't be able to feel the earthquakes on the surface.


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