Geology 875-004
Explosive Volcanism, Volcanic Ash
and Tephrochronology

Spring 1996

Syllabus, References and Readings

Description: We will focus on key features of explosive volcanism, on the 
volcanic ash that is erupted and which can travel thousands of kilometers 
from the source,  and on the applications of study of this ash, to fields such as 
tephrochronology   the use of distinctive features of ash as stratigraphic 

Seminar will meet for 1-1.5 hours weekly, 1:20 to 2:50 PM, in Room 470. 

Class   Week		Schedule of Discussion Topics

1	1/29	Volcanism/tectonics; General Types of Pyroclastics; Magma-
chemistry and physical properties

2	2/5	 Explosive eruptions

3	2/12	Pyroclastic products and deposits

4	2/19	Tephra: ash and pumice features

5	2/26	Dating of tephra; stratigraphic problems, e.g., Alaska Peninsula 
(P. Saltonstall)

6	3/4	Tephra: sampling, sieving; hand picking, mounting

	3/11	No class -- Spring Break

7	3/18 	SEM and EMPA characterization/analysis of tephra

8	3/25	Ash, magnetostratigraphy and pollen (B. Jackson)

9	4/1	Debris avalanches    (A. Wohlgenant)

10	4/8	Soils and alteration of volcanic glass (P. Falk)

11	4/15	Soils and old ash deposits (tonsteins, bentonites) (J.  Munroe)

12	4/22	Holocene volcano-climate relations: ice cores, etc (T. Dochat)

13	4/29	SO2-rich volcanic eruptions and climate 

14	5/6	Eruption and deposits of Mt. St. Helens 

Reference Books Available at University Bookstore

These texts are not required, just recommended as possible references -- the 
first two are  good references now going out of print.  

Pyroclastic Rocks, 1984 by R V Fisher and H-U Schmincke. Springer-Verlag,
isbn3-540-12756-9 / 0-387-12756-9 -$85 (4 copies)

Volcanic Successions, 1987, by R A F Cas and J V Wright, Allen and Unwin,
isbn 0-04-552022-4  $60.95 (4 copies )

Volcanic Ash and Aviation Safety; Proceedings of First Intl Symp. on Volc.
Ash and Av. Safety; U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 2047, 1994, ed by T.
Casadevall, US GPO 1994-573-038/86047   $25.50 (5 copies) 

Volcanoes of the World, 1994, Second Edition (not 1st) Simkin and Siebert;
Geoscience Press; isbn 0-945005-12-1  Mountain Press Publishing Co, PO
Box 2399, 1301 S. Third West ST, Missoula MT 59806  800 234-5308 -$18.75? (list 

Reference Books: Those on Reserve in the Geology Library marked with **

Studies in Volcanology ( Eds: R. Coats et al) GSA Memoir 116, 1968

Volcanoes of the Earth (F. Bullard), U of TX press, 1976

**A Manual for Tephrochronology (V. Steen-McIntyre), 1977

Ash-Flow Tuffs (Ed: C. Chapin and W. Elston), GSA Special Paper 180, 1979

**Volcanic Activity and Human Ecology (Ed: P. Sheets and D. Grayson), 
Academic Press, 1979

**Volcanology (H. Williams and A. McBirney) Freeman, Cooper and Co, 1979

**The 1980 Eruptions of Mount St. Helens, Washington (Ed: P. Lipman and 
D. Mullineaux), USGS Professinal Paper 1250, 1981

**Tephra Studies (Ed: S. Self and R. Sparks) Reidel,  1981

Guides to Some Volcanic Terranes in Washington, Idaho, Oregon, and 
Northern California (Eds: D.A. Johnston and J. Donnelly-Nolan), USGS 
Circular 838, 1981

The Time of Darkness (R. Blong) U of WA Press, 1982

The Great Tolbachik Fissure Eruption (Ed: S. Fedotov and Y. Markhinin), 
Cambridge,  1983

**Pyroclastic Rocks (R.V. Fisher and H-U Schmincke) Springer-Verlag, 1984

Explosive Volcanism: Inception, Evolution, and Hazards (National Research 
Council),  National Academy Press, 1984

Mount Etna: Anatomy of a volcano (D. Chester et al), Stanford U.  Press, 1985

**Volcanic Ash (G. Heiken and K. Wohlez) U of CA Press, 1985

**Volcanic Successions (R. Cas and J. Wright), Allen and Unwin, 1987

Global Volcanism 1975-1985 (Eds: McClelland etal = Smithsonian), AGU-
Prentice Hall, 1989

Field excursions to volcanic terranes in the western US, Vol II: Cascades and 
Intermountain West (Eds: Chapin and Zidek), New Mexico Bureau of Mines 
& Mineral Resources Memoir 47, 1989

Road Guide to Volcanic Deposits of Mount St. Helens and Vicinity, 
Washington (M. Doukas), USGS Bulletin 1859, 1990

Volcanoes of North America (Ed: C. Wood and J. Kienle), Cambridge, 1990

**Sedimentation in Volcanic Settings (Eds: Fisher and Smith), SEPM Special 
Publication 45, 1991

**Volcanology and Geothermal Energy ( K. Wohletz and G. Heiken) U of CA 
press, 1992

Monitoring Volcanoes: Techniques and Strategies Used by the Staff of CVO, 
1980-90 (Eds:  J. Ewert and D. Swanson), USGS Bulletin 1966,  1992

Paricutin (Ed: J. Luhr and T. Simkin) Geoscience Press,  1993

**Volcanic Ash and Aviation Safety (Ed: T. Casadevall), USGS, 1994

**Volatiles in Magmas (Ed: Carroll and Holloway), MSA Reviews in 
Mineralogy 30, 1994

**Volcanoes of the World, Second Edition (T. Simkin and L. Siebert), 
Geoscience Press, 1994
Some Journals where appropriate articles may be found

Bulletin of Volcanology (originally entitled Buletin Volcanologique)
Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research
Quaternary Research
The Holocene
Quaternary International
Journal of American Soil Science Society
Reading List:

1. Introduction:  General Types of Pyroclastics;Volcanism/tectonics;magma: 
chemistry and physical properties

Fisher and Schmincke 1-2, 8-10, 11-15
Sheets and Grayson 9-20

Fisher and Schmincke 16-34, 35-58 
Carroll and Holloway  302-311, 321

2. Explosive eruptions: different types;   PC computer eruption model

Fisher and Schmincke 59-88
Sheets and Grayson 20-39

Wohletz and Sheridan, 1991, Erupt: A graphical simulation of volcanic 
eruptions for the personal computer; Los Alamos NL publication LA-UR-91-
3205, 27 pp

3. Pyroclastic products and deposits: sub-aerial, sub-marine, sub-glacial
include (among other things):  pyroclastic surges, flows; airfall

Fisher and Schmincke, p 89-124

Self and Walker, 1994, Ash clouds: characteristics of eruption columns, USGS 
Bull 2047, 65-74

Woods and Kienle, 1994, The injection of volcanic ash into the atmosphere, 
USGS Bull 2047, 101-105

Carey and Sparks, 1986, Quantitative models of the fallout and dispersal of 
tephra from volcanic eruption columns, Bull. Volcanol. 48: 109-125

Carey, 1991, Transport and deposition of tephra by pyroclastic flows and 
surges, in SEPM Spec. Pub. 45, 39-57

4. Pyroclastic deposits; Tephra: ash and pumice

Sheets and Grayson 49-82

Fisher and Schminke, pp 125-162

Heiken and Wohletz, 1991, Fragmentation processes in explosive volcanic 
eruptions, in SEPM Spec. Publ. 45, 19-26

Heiken, 1994, Volcanic ash: what it is and how it forms, USGS Bull 2047, 39-45

5. Dating, stratigraphic problems; Alaska Peninsula

Self and Sparks, 13-64

Berger and Davis, 1992, Dating volcanic ash by thermoluminescence: test and 
application, Quat. Intl, 13/14: 127-130

Sandhu, Westgate and Stemper, 1992, Isothermal plateau correction for 
partial fading of fission tracks in hydrated glass shards, Quat. Intl, 13/14: 121-

Fisher and Schmicke 346-382

 Aleutian Islands/Alaska Peninsula

Sheets and Grayson 373-392

Preece, Westgate and Gorton, 1992, Compositional variation and preovenance 
of late cenozoic distal tephra beds, Fairbanks area, Alaska, Quat Intl, 13/14:97-

Beget, Mason, and Anderson, 1992, Age, extent and climatic significance of the 
c. 3400 BP Aniakchak tephra, western Alaska, USA, The Holocene, 2: 51-56

Reinink-Smith, 1990, Relative frequency of Neogene volcanic events as 
recorded in coal partings from the Kenai lowland, Alaska; GSAB, 102:830-840

6. Tephra : sample collection, sieving, sample prep,  hand picking, mounting, 
chemical analysis

Cas and Wright, 1987, p. 469-478

Froggatt, 1992, Standardization of the chemical analysis of tephra deposits, 
report of the ICCT working group, Quat. Intl., 13/14: 93-96

Westgate and Fulton, 1975, Tephrostratigraphy of Olympia interglacial 
sediments in south-central British Columbia, Canada, Can. J. Earth Sci., 12: 

Self and Sparks, 73-94; 103-107

7.  Tephra Lab: Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEI and BSE) and Electron 
Microprobe (EMPA)

Smith and Westgate, 1969, Electron probe technique for characterising 
pyroclastic deposits, EPSL, 5: 313-319

Smith, Okazaki and Knowles, 1977, Electron microprobe analysis of glass 
shards from tephra assigned to Set W, Mount St. Helens, Washington, Quat. 
Res. 7: 207-217

8.  Ash, magnetostratigraphy,  and pollen studies

Sheets and Grayson, 393-426

Self and Sparks, 65-72

Beget, Stihler and Stone, 1994, A 500-year-long record of tephra falls from 
Redoubt Volcano and other volcanoes in upper Cook Inlet, Alaska, JVGR, 62: 

9. Debris Avalanches:

USGS PP 1250:  Volcanic Deposits section, p 347-378

Glicken, 1991, Sedimentary architecture of large volcanic-debris avalanches, 
in SEPM Special Pub 45, p 99-106

Palmer, B., Alloway and Neall, Volcanic-debris-avalanche deposits in New 
Zealand-- Lithofacies organization in unconfined, wet-avalanche flows, in 
SEPM Special Pub 45, p 89-98

Siebert, Glicken and Ui, 1987, Volcanic hazards from Bexymianny- and 
Bandai-type eruptions, Bull. Volcanol. 49: 435-459

Siebe, C. , Abrams and Macias, Derrumbes gigantes, depositos de avalancha de 
escombros y edad del actual cono del volcano Popocatepetl, in Volcan 
Popocatepetl: estudios relizados durante la crisis de 1994-95, Comite Cientifico 
Asesor CENAPRED-UANM, 1995, p 195-220  (lots of great color photos)

10.  Soils: Alteration of Volcanic Glass 

Fisher and Schmicke 312-345

Sheets and Grayson 83-124

Summa and Verosub, 1992, Trace element mobility during early diagenesis of 
volcanic ash: applictions to stratigraphic correlation, Quat. Intl, 13/14: 149-157

Ping, Shoji and Ito, Properties and classification of three volcanic ash-derived 
pedons from Aleutian Islands and Alaska Peninsula, Alaska, Soil Sci, Soc. 
Am. J. 52:455-462

13. Soils and Old ash: Tonsteins, bentonites

Huff, Bergstrom and Kolata, 1992, Gigantic Ordoviaian volcanic ash fall in 
North America and Europe, Geology, 20: 875-878

Hein and Scholl, 19778, Diagenesis and distribution of late Cenozoic volcanic 
sediment in the southern Bering Sea, GSAB, 89:197-210

Spears and Kanaris-sotiriou, 1979, A geochemical and mineralogical 
investigation of some British and other European tonsteins, Sedimentology, 

12,13.   Climatic effects:

Bryson and Goodman, 1980, Volcanic activity and climatic changes, Science, 
207: 1041-1044

Hirschboeck, 1979/80, A new worldwide chronology of volcanic eruptions, 
Palaeogeo, Palaeoclim, Palaeoecol, 29: 223-241

Sigurdsson, 1990, Assessment of the atmospheric impact of volcanic 
eruptions, in GSA Spec. Paper 247, 99-110

Rampino, Self and Fairbridge, 1979, Can rapid climatic change cause volcanic 
eruptions?, Science, 206: 826-829

Rampino, 1991, Volcanism, climatic change, and the geologic record, in SEPM 
Spec. Publ. 45, 9-18

Zielinski etal, 1994, Record of volcanism since 7000 BC from the GISP2 
Greenland ice core and implications for the volcano-climate system, Science, 
264: 948-952 and exchange in Science, 267: 256-258 (1995)
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