The past history of recurrent flank collapses of la Soufriere volcano of Guadeloupe, its structure, its well-developed hydrothermal system and the current activity constitute factors that could promote a future flank collapse, particularly in the case of a significant increase of activity, with or without shallow magmatic input. To address the hazards associated with such a collapse, we model the emplacement of the debris avalanche generated by a flank-collapse event in 1,250 BC (3,100 years B.P.). We use a finite-difference grain-flow model solving mass and momentum conservation equations that are depth-averaged over the slide thickness, and a Coulomb-type friction law with a variable basal (minimum) friction angle. Using the parameter values determined from this simulation, we then simulate the debris avalanche which could be generated by a potential collapse of the present lava dome. We then discuss the region which could be affected by such a future collapse, and additional associated hazards of concern.
Inst Phys Globe, Equipe Volcanol, F-75252 Paris 05, France; CEA, Lab Detect Geophys, F-91680 Bruyeres Le Chatel, FranceArticleEnglish