A Comparison of Thermal Observations of Mount St. Helens Before and During the First Week of the Initial 1980 Eruption

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Science  26 Sep 1980:
Vol. 209, Issue 4464, pp. 1526-1527
DOI: 10.1126/science.209.4464.1526


Before and during the first week of the March-April 1980 eruptions of Mount St. Helens, Washington, infrared thermal surveys were conducted to monitor the thermal activity of the volcano. The purpose was to determine if an increase in thermal activity had taken place since an earlier airborne survey in 1966. Nine months before the eruption there was no evidence of an increase in thermal activity. The survey during the first week of the 1980 eruptions indicated that little or no change in thermal activity had taken place up to 4 April. Temperatures of ejected ash and steam were low and never exceeded 15°C directly above the vent.

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