Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Expert Challenges Earthquake Theory Behind Indonesian Mud Volcano

Date:
August 5, 2007
Source:
Durham University
Summary:
A leading expert has repeated his assertion that an Indonesian mud volcano was almost certainly man-made despite a new study claiming the eruption might have been triggered by an earthquake. Professor Richard Davies of Durham University's Center for Research into Earth Energy Systems, said the volcano, known locally as Lusi, was most likely caused by the drilling of a nearby exploratory borehole looking for gas.

Mud volcano.
Credit: Image courtesy of Durham University

A leading expert has repeated his assertion that an Indonesian mud volcano was almost certainly manmade despite a new study claiming the eruption might have been triggered by an earthquake.

Professor Richard Davies of Durham University's Centre for Research into Earth Energy Systems (CeREES), said the volcano, known locally as Lusi, was most likely caused by the drilling of a nearby exploratory borehole (1) looking for gas.

He reiterated the findings of a Durham University-led study, first published in the February issue of US Journal GSA Today, following publication of a new paper led by the University of Oslo which said the eruption in May 2006 might have been caused by an earthquake that occurred two days earlier.

The Durham-led research discounted the effect of the earthquake as a cause of the eruption.

Professor Richard Davies, of Durham University's Centre for Research into Earth Energy Systems (CeREES), said: "There were several problems with the exploration well prior to the eruption of the mud volcano, but it was when they started to pull the drill bit out of the hole that they probably sucked gas and water into the wellbore.

"We have calculated that a water or gas influx would have caused a critical increase in the pressure in the hole, sufficient to fracture the rock strata underground.

"It is very unlikely that the Yoyakarta earthquake had a significant role to play in the development of the mud volcano.

"We still maintain that the mud volcano was most likely triggered by operations during drilling. There is no need to evoke an earthquake trigger for this."

Lusi first erupted on May 29 2006 in the Porong sub-district of Sidoarjo in Eastern Java, close to Indonesia's second city of Surabaya.

The volcano has continued to spew out an estimated 150,000 cubic metres of mud every day and now covers an area of 10 square kilometres.

Around 20,000 to 30,000 people have lost their homes and factories have been destroyed. Thirteen people have also died as a result of a rupture in a natural gas pipeline that lay underneath one of the holding dams built to retain the mud.

(1) The borehole is owned by Indonesian oil and gas company Lapindo Brantas.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Durham University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Durham University. "Expert Challenges Earthquake Theory Behind Indonesian Mud Volcano." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 August 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070731125741.htm>.
Durham University. (2007, August 5). Expert Challenges Earthquake Theory Behind Indonesian Mud Volcano. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070731125741.htm
Durham University. "Expert Challenges Earthquake Theory Behind Indonesian Mud Volcano." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070731125741.htm (accessed September 2, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Thousands of Fish Dead in Mexico Lake

Raw: Thousands of Fish Dead in Mexico Lake

AP (Sep. 2, 2014) — Over 53 tons of rotting fish have been removed from Lake Cajititlan in western Jalisco state. Authorities say that the thousands of fish did not die of natural causes. (Sep. 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Iceland Volcano Spewing Smoke

Raw: Iceland Volcano Spewing Smoke

AP (Sep. 2, 2014) — The alert warning for the area surrounding Iceland's Bardarbunga volcano was kept at orange on Tuesday, indicating increased unrest with greater potential for an eruption. Smoke is spewing from the volcano, and lava is spouting nearby. (Sept. 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) — The U.N. says the problem is two-fold — quarantine zones and travel restrictions are limiting the movement of both people and food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sharks Off the Menu and on the Tourist Trail in Palau

Sharks Off the Menu and on the Tourist Trail in Palau

AFP (Sep. 2, 2014) — Tourists in Palau clamour to dive with sharks thanks to a pioneering conservation initiative -- as the island nation plans to completely ban commercial fishing in its vast ocean territory. 01:15 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins