you plan to visit Etna in the near future?
The Etna telecamera is maintained by the "Sistema Poseidon" and there is no relationship of any kind with this site and its author. The Poseidon web site is in Italian, and the link to the telecamera is changed frequently, so that it is not indicated here (click on "Etna live cam" on the Poseidon home page). Please note also that all information provided on the present page (and the archived Etna news pages) is informal, based on personal observations, and is not intended to substitute, or compete with, the news bulletins now issued regularly at the Poseidon web site.
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NOTE. The most recent update (23 March 2001) is at the bottom of this page!
3 February 2001 update. Lava has continued to issue at a very low but persistent rate from a vent on the NNE flank of the Southeast Crater cone since around 20 January. This activity has formed a small field of overlapping and adjacent flows extending only a few hundred meters from the source. On the evening of 1 February, a bright incandescence was observed at the vent, but it seems this was only gas that was illuminated by the extruding lava. Meanwhile Strombolian activity at the Bocca Nuova has undergone a clear increase, with ejecta being thrown above the crater rim. The present activity does not indicate a clear trend towards a paroxysm, but it is evident that the Southeast Crater has changed its behavior since last year when effusive activity from one of the two fractures on its flanks was followed within hours to days by paroxysmal eruptive episodes.
20 February 2001 update.
extrusion of lava from a vent on the north-northeastern flank of the
Southeast Crater cone, initiated one month ago, is continuing as of
20 February, without showing significant fluctuations or trends. This
activity has generated a field of mostly overlapping, and partially
adjacent, flow lobes, extending a few hundred meters towards east
or southeast. The longest lobes have extended 500 m or more from the
source. During a visit to the active vent by Marco Fulle, Jürg Alean
(Stromboli On-line) and others on 12 February, the vent had the form
of a "tumulus", from which lava issued in a pulsating manner,
at times accompanied by vigorous degassing.
1 March 2001 update.
activity at the summit craters of Etna has continued with some fluctuations
through late February, with Strombolian activity at two vents in the
Bocca Nuova, deep-seated Strombolian activity within the central pit
of the Northeast Crater, and slow lava effusion from a vent on the
NNE flank of the Southeast Crater. On the evening of 28 February,
the activity appeared particularly intense, and a bright glow was
reflected in weather clouds near the summit. Later that evening weather
conditions worsened, and the volcano became invisible.
12 March 2001 update. During the first half of March, the mild but at times vigorous eruptive activity at the summit craters has continued much in the same manner as during the preceding weeks. Lava continues to issue at a very slow rate from a vent low on the NNE flank of the Southeast Crater cone, forming short lobes. Explosive (Strombolian) activity is near continuous at the two vents in the Bocca Nuova, and the rumbling of the explosions can be heard to many kilometers away. Weak intracrater Strombolian activity is also occurring intermittently at the Northeast Crater.
23 March 2001 update. Summit eruptive activity has continued without significant changes. Strombolian activity at the two vents in the Bocca Nuova (northwestern and southeastern vents) is virtually continuous and can often be seen with the naked eye at night from Catania and other locations around the volcano. Ejecta commonly fall back into the vents, but occasionally land beyond the rims of the Bocca Nuova to roll down the external slopes of the main summit cone. Lava also continues to flow from a single vent on the lower NNE flank of the Southeast Crater cone, at quite a low rate, forming short lobes which do not extend beyond the margins of the flow field formed since 20 January. The activity is what has become known as "persistent" several decades ago, typical for Etna in periods between flank eruptions, but much less spectacular than what the summit craters produced in the preceding five years.
Several other web pages covering the recent and ongoing eruptions of the Southeast Crater are now available; these contain photos and movie clips of some of the most spectacular moments of that period.
© Boris Behncke, "Italy's Volcanoes: The Cradle of Volcanology"
Page set up on 27 May 1997, last modified on 23 March 2001