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New Activity at Mt. Rainier Confirmed to Be Seismic (...or ICE?), Right here on ATS!

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posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 03:36 AM
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well from what iv followed so far on here , its def swarming but the question remains what kind of swarm is it?

are they normal quakes or volcanic in nature.. since we are well aware of the fact that at any volcano both kinds have been known to swarm and why hasnt the usgs listed them as quakes ?

me thinks its only a matter of time before she does blow .. might even be this year .. now that would make headlines ..... and we can hope and pray it doesnt cause a chain reaction further south .....

damn i wish i had a normal connection id do the research my self .....

thanks again west cost for the graphs etc .... i personally appreciate it ...




posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 11:02 AM
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Here is the link to the latest blog entry from the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network:
22-minutes drumbeat icequakes?

ETA: It looks like the "background noise" just increased a bit on RCM. It begins at 18:18 UTC. I've seen it do this for a few hours on each of the previous 3 days--glacier grinding? RCM--past 6 hours


edit on 1/11/2012 by Olivine because: add info & link



posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 01:01 PM
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reply to post by Olivine
 


Once again, the last statement from the above linked blog stands out for me:



We're guessing this means a Rainier glacier is creeping downhill, hanging up on a rock underneath, and every cm of motion the rock lets go in a little quake. An activity with no threat to people. Or else something else is going on. A traditional explanation for drumbeat earthquakes has been moving plugs of magma, or episodic choked fluid flow, but those explanations seems unlikely in this case


..."Or else something else is going on."

I do appreciate how he always adds the disclaimer, leaving it open to discussion.

I still don't understand how a glacier can create 'drumbeat' quakes. I can't quite wrap my brain around that one. Still seems to me that it would completely random quakes, given all the variables.

At this point, my ten cents (for whatever it's worth) is that it's magmatic or hydrothermal. I don't know if this has been discussed, but what hz do hydrothermal vents usually fall into? Because we already know these quakes are in the HT range, but what about water?

One other thing: If this IS magma....than it is very shallow. I think we be seeing some other signs, right? Either melt-off or possibly steam???



edit on 11-1-2012 by westcoast because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 01:30 PM
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You might find this article interesting as is bears very strong characteristics to Reinier

www.wired.com...

Rainbows
Jane



posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 01:44 PM
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Originally posted by westcoast

..."Or else something else is going on."


I'm leaning toward this.
It could be just a very small magmatic dike intrusion. ( Let me emphasis this is my "did not major in geology" guess ) Since the rock of the volcano is so crumbly and clay-rich from escaping gases, freezing and thawing, erosion etc., the rainwater and glacial melt are probable able to percolate down inside the mountain a good distance.

I had posted a comment and questions on the blog this morning; here are the responses:

1) I notice that drumbeats are showing on seismos further down the mountain.

I think the signals are visible farther out now because some are getting louder, but we haven't calculated the amplitudes.

2) Have you been able to calculate the depth of these icequakes?


The depths are unconstrained - we're assuming they are near the surface. They can't be more than a km or so deep or the signals would be sharper and less variable from station to station.

[the bolding is mine, for emphasis.]

Would the signals necessarily be sharper if they were traveling through warm rock? Just a question.
And the signals have been nearly identical for days. Maybe I'm not understanding his meaning....

Westcoast, I think we would see other signs. Maybe there is other data collection going on that we don't have access to.


edit on 1/11/2012 by Olivine because: to add info

edit on 1/11/2012 by Olivine because: to add end external quotes


One last edit--it looks like Mr. Vidale has done some editing and fleshing out of this latest blog entry. It's worth a re-read.
edit on 1/11/2012 by Olivine because: One last stinking edit.....grumble, grumble



posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 01:55 PM
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reply to post by Olivine
 


Excellent. I hadn't seen the answers. Does it seem to you that as this progesses, they are struggling a bit more to come up with an explanation? Nothing negative is meant by that, just that I think the glacier theory is getting less likely (IMO).

I don't know about the sharper signal/warm rock question, as I am also NOT formally educated enough to answer it. I'll try to dig something up later when I have time...also, I am going to look more into other monitoring tools. At least (right now) the summit is visible, so we can look at it! However, the highest elevation camera is still down, unfortunately (looks like it's covered in snow)

I would really like to take a listen to these recent events. See what they sound like.

ETA: Interesting rumble on RCM right now....shows up on the other stations too. It isn't weather.
edit on 11-1-2012 by westcoast because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 02:59 PM
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Originally posted by westcoast
Does it seem to you that as this progesses, they are struggling a bit more to come up with an explanation? Nothing negative is meant by that, just that I think the glacier theory is getting less likely (IMO).

ETA: Interesting rumble on RCM right now....shows up on the other stations too. It isn't weather.
edit on 11-1-2012 by westcoast because: (no reason given)


Westcoast, I absolutely agree with you--they are struggling for an adequate explanation.


The rumble only seems to be picked up at RCM. I wish we could see the spectrograph for it.
I see a "rumble" on Fremont, too, but it looks like it is calming down. And a big, strange signature. FMW seismo

One last thought, if these drumbeats are from the glacier grinding on a rock, then popping, as PNSN contests, then how would the activity pick up in intensity enough to be picked up on seismos further out? Did the rock or the glacier get bigger? (i'm being a smart***)
edit on 1/11/2012 by Olivine because: because I can never get it right the 1st time


Here is another link that shows the mountain from Tacoma (scroll down for a zoomed look) TacomaWeatherCam
edit on 1/11/2012 by Olivine because: I got it wrong the 2nd time, too



posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 03:54 PM
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reply to post by Olivine
 


We are thinking along the same track on this. That was actually my next question...WHY is getting 'louder'? It isn't moving faster.....

Be sure to check out the blog again, it's been updated with more info (I think because of your questions!
)

source


The new 'ending':


Our primary hypothesis is that these are generated as a glacier is creeping downhill at a steady velocity, hanging up on a rock underneath until enough stress builds up to break past the sticky point, generating a tiny quake as it does. In the second case mentioned above, the glacier would be slowing down, while in the first case it is maintaining a steady velocity. An activity with no threat to people. But that is not the only possibility. It could be related to episodic releases of gas from hydrothermal vents, since there are active hydrothermal areas on the mountain. Another explanation for drumbeat earthquakes on volcanoes is that they are due to moving plugs of magma, escape of volcanic gasses through cracks, or magma flow through a constriction. This probably isn't the case here, so don't get too worried. Volcanoes almost always make a lot of noise before they are going to erupt, usually in the form of swarms of deeper "volcano-tectonic" earthquakes and tremor; none of this is occurring but we are keeping a close eye on things.




I really like Mr. Vidale's answer here to a question about it possibly being a new hotspring or geyser formation:


If there were just one set of repeaters, we'd just say a glacier changed the way it is moving for any of a number of possible reasons. However, the repeating sets seem to be coming from source regions with some areal extent - see Kate's map a few blogs back, so somehow multiple glaciers are involved. Involvement of hydrothermal fluids is possible.


I think that answer may put another nail in the proverbial coffin. So now, we not only have one glacier stick-sliping, but two? What are the odds of this? No one really knows, I'm sure but for me, this indicates if not another source for the cause altogether, but certainly another factor causing it.

Also...that these quakes were at first irregular, but are now regular, and the info in the blog about how this change occured sometime on the 4th or 5th during a storm so the seismos were to messy to tell. WELL okay. IF this were magmatic in nature, and we would expect some deeper, volcanic/tectonic quakes in association I would also think they are going to affect each other.

Guess what occured on the 5th?:


Magnitude: 0.5 Md
Time: Thu January 5, 2012 07:15AM (PST)
Thu January 5, 2012 15:15 (GMT)
Distance From: 38.7 km ( 24.1 mi) E ( 93. azimuth) from Eatonville, WA
43.0 km ( 26.7 mi) SSE ( 156. azimuth) from Enumclaw, WA
51.3 km ( 31.9 mi) NE ( 50. azimuth) from Morton, WA

Coordinates: 46.852, -121.756
Depth: 4.31 Km (2.63 miles)
Location Quality: Excellent
Event Id: 60378941
Horizontal Uncertainty: 0.35 Km
Depth Uncertainty: 0.58 Km
Azimuthal Gap: 96.0 deg
Number of Phases: 9
RMS Misfit: 0.05




This is by NO MEANS a large quake. .5 is a very small micro quake. BUT, the depth is 4.3 km, right smack dab in the middle of the volcano. It occured during the time that these other events became regular....perhaps indicating that something shifted??????

I just think this is POSSIBLY an indication of a volcanic source for the current events. Maybe...........



posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 05:14 PM
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reply to post by westcoast
 


WC, I don't think my questions had anything to do with Mr. Vidale's additional explanations--but it was nice of you to think it.


Nice find by you of the Mag 0.5 during the storm. That depth puts it right at the mountain's base, and a possible "crack" that put the repeaters into rhythm. I like your detective work.


Just out of curiosity, I checked the stream guages of the Puyallup River at Electron and Orting, and the Carbon River near Fairfax, WA. All were at there lowest levels for the past week. So if this swarm is volcanic, there isn't enough heat to cause immediate melting--thank goodness!
Here is the link to the USGS Real-Time Data for Washington State if anyone wants to check it out.
edit on 1/11/2012 by Olivine because: fix link



posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 06:27 PM
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reply to post by Olivine
 


Ugh.... now why didn't I think of that?


Here is a NOAA MAP I use for tracking the rivers. Easy point and click.



posted on Jan, 12 2012 @ 01:10 PM
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These "repeating icequakes" have been amazingly consistant. Like, set your watch accurate. That is, until a little bit ago. I'm not sure if it was the "triple" snap seen on Station RCS at 17:55:40, or this multiplet shaped differently than the 100's that have proceeded it at 18:18:30.


In any event, the next repeater showed up 2 minutes early, at 18:38:35 UTC. So, I've been typing while waiting to see if the interval between the multiplets returns to 22 minutes, stays at 20 for a while, or gets shorter....

And it seems to have returned to 22 minute intervals @ 19:00:30ish. Just a bump in the ice chute as the glacier descends, I guess.

Nothing to see here, continue on with your regular activities.

ETA: Well it might take a bit for this to reach its equilibrium again.. The next multiplet hit at 19:19:30. Only a 19 minute interval. Keep watching for those of you playing at home.

edit on 1/12/2012 by Olivine because: I jumped the proverbial gun



posted on Jan, 12 2012 @ 01:25 PM
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Okay, so something finally clicked for me this morning, but bear with me because this is definitely an outside the box theory. It probably isn't even remotely possilbe, but this is just how my brain works sometimes and I have to ask for help in disproving it.


Something has been tickling the back of my brain whenever I look at the rhythmic nature of these quakes. The way they stretch out and then fade back (22 min to 19 min right now) making sweeping arches across the seismograph. A few days ago i found THIS COOL PAPER about hydrothermal plumes and how they work. I've been wanting to link because it just feels like there is something significant there, but I couldn't figure out what. Be sure to look at the GIF about halfway down, on the left. It shows how the plumes work, the cycles.

SO...here is the HUGE jump. This morning the lightbulb came up. The rhythm of these quakes remind me of the rhythm of the ocean. The surge and ebb of the tides. That, together with the paper on how the hydrothermal plumes work under the ocean, kept bringing me back around to water.

Perphaps that is only because it is linked to something hydrothermal....but Rainier isn't that far from the ocean, so I think it worth the time to check out the tide chart. I have tried, but charts and trying to match up the different times (UTC, PST., etc) is NOT a strong suit of mine. Maybe someone else is better at it???

NOAA site with tide info


So another angle (again, trying to think outside the box here), goes along with part of my theory on my Washington Thread, AND my Deep Tremor. There, I have expanded upon the scientific paper suggesting a large magma chamber under Washington State and tied that into the deep tremors. I wondered if there WERE a very large body of magma, could it not have its own tidal pattern, in an affect? Obviously, depending on the viscosity of the magma, it would be very, very slow.....but.

Spectographs for deep tremors

I am pretty much just thinking outloud here now, but I have found that sometimes that leads to others coming up with even better ideas. Anyways, since the scientists don't know for sure what this is, what the heck? May as well have some fun with it!!



ETA: @Olivine: ofcourse, I don't have GEE up right now. My computer re-booted after updating and I hadn't reloaded it yet...figures. The image you just posted looked like a 'real' quake, even though it is at the same freq/size as the multiplets. Hmmmm......
edit on 12-1-2012 by westcoast because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 12 2012 @ 02:00 PM
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Interesting thanks,

There was an old thread on this maybe looking at what happened then and now with all the resources on it, we can see if its just a Phew or a BOOM?

Thanks for the experts on here looking at this stuff for us:

Disturbing Activity at Rainer

Kind Regards

Elf



posted on Jan, 12 2012 @ 09:46 PM
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Here's the latest blog entry from the PNSN. Nice new chart and some speculation about the weather correlation.

Hmmmm. I got this interesting abstract from the other blog. Mr. Vidale's answer pertaining to it is interesting too. Someone should dive into that....

edit on 12-1-2012 by westcoast because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 12 2012 @ 09:59 PM
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Originally posted by westcoast
Here's the latest blog entry from the PNSN. Nice new chart and some speculation about the weather correlation.


Hmm, so that's interesting, a correlation with the weather? Maybe.


But these are no ordinary alpine glaciers, these are glaciers riding on a bed of crumbly volcanic rocks and heated from below, the typical rules may not apply.


Well, the biggest problem I see so far with the glacier explanation is the 3-4 Hz, and they had better go back to the spectrum analysis and look again. "Crumbly volcanic rocks" don't produce 3-4 Hz. Usually, only very large rock structures can vibrate at those very low frequencies. In this case it might be the entire glacier vibrating, but what I fail to see is the GPS confirmation of glacier movement. Anybody got links to this?



posted on Jan, 13 2012 @ 07:53 AM
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reply to post by TrueAmerican
 

TA, I've used this site for GPS and tiltmeter data. PANGA You can also reach this from the PNSN tremor map page. Click monitoring, then GPS.
Here are 2 screen grabs of stations RCM and OBSR. But there isn't recent data for December & January. (not convenient
)


I took a series of screen shots yesterday morning of Rainier, looking for steam. I've debated whether to load them or not--but I have them, so here they are. Rainier almost always has some steam escaping from the crater rim, but it is such a small amount it usually can't be seen from a distance. CVO-Mt. Rainier

The shallow floors of these craters are filled with snow and ice, but the raised rims are snow-free year-round because of high winds and because much of the ground is still hot. Steam or warm mist, at or just below boiling temperature, rises from the crater rims in many areas and has melted an intricate system of caves into the base of the crater-filling ice.

These images are from the Tacoma Weather Cam and are found just below the widescreen image on the page. They are zoomed 10x, and the sun is rising behind the volcano to the left. I cropped the screen shot so you can see the local time in the image above. Wind speed was 19mph maximum at Camp Muir, avg wind 5mph.

The little clouds on the left side of the summit are what I was watching. I'm not sure if they are steam or just regular clouds. Pretty, none the less. I know what you're thinking...glaciers don't produce steam


In GEE, it looks like the repeating "icequake" amplitudes are slowly creeping higher. STAR has gone from 800nm/s to 1.2mic/s, for example.
And westcoast, I'm still reading the link you gave, but your "tides" idea is interesting...

edit on 1/13/2012 by Olivine because: to fix thumbnail

edit on 1/13/2012 by Olivine because: it always takes me at least 2 edits to get it right



posted on Jan, 13 2012 @ 08:14 AM
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Originally posted by westcoast
Here's the latest blog entry from the PNSN. Nice new chart and some speculation about the weather correlation.


I think I need someone to spell out the correlation to me--I don't see it. "Speculation" seems accurate, lol.

Did you see this miniscule earthquake on the NE side of the summit yesterday?
Source of external text

Earthquake Report
Magnitude: -0.3 Md
Time:Wed January 11, 2012 04:24PM (PST) Thu January 12, 2012 00:24 (GMT)
Distance From:
39.6 km ( 24.6 mi) E ( 91. azimuth) from Eatonville, WA
42.2 km ( 26.2 mi) SSE ( 154. azimuth) from Enumclaw, WA
52.8 km ( 32.8 mi) NE ( 50. azimuth) from Morton, WA
Coordinates: 46.8638333, -121.7443333

Depth:
0.76 Km (0.46 miles)
Location Quality: Excellent
Event Id: 60382536
Horizontal Uncertainty: 0.28 Km
Depth Uncertainty: 0.52 Km
Azimuthal Gap: 85.0 deg
Number of Phases: 10

Would this be at the surface, or 1/2 mile deep?



posted on Jan, 13 2012 @ 04:01 PM
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reply to post by Olivine
 


If you go and look HERE (zoom in on Rainier) it gets a bit interesting. There were two more quakes listed for today and yesterday on top of the mountain (negatives)...but take a look a little further out. Since 12/30 there have been a dozen quakes around 4km -12km deep near enough to (I think) fall inside it's seismic zone. Yes, there are earthquakes there sometimes. However, I think this is more than usuall, and it goes along with all other activity.

I guess what I am wondering here is whether or not this could possibly be some that earthquake action we were talking about watching for. Now, I am NOT saying that I think the mountain is about to erupt, but that this could perhaps be one more check on the list.



posted on Jan, 14 2012 @ 12:47 AM
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reply to post by Olivine
 


Hey, thanks for providing those links. There does appear to be some recent uplift at GPS station OBSR, which is on the north side of the summit, but it really is minor. Any movement appears to be in millimeters, not meters. Like, this thing could expand and contract and move further than that!

I dunno man, I am about ready to call "no way" on the glacier moving explanation for these quakes. I am expected to believe that a glacier, moving on the order of 1 or 2 MILLIMETERS per YEAR, is causing REPEATING seismicity at 3-4 Hz?

:shk:

I mean maybe if it was moving a meter per day or something, but a couple millimeters per year?

Well they've tried all they are going to try to convince me it's ice, but everything is pointing to seismic. Duck. Might be a lame duck, but a duck. A duck barked at by a woof woof!


These events could just as easily be from magma or water fracturing rock. That's what magma or water fracturing rock looks like on a seismo! Exactly what we are seeing: short, spiky quakes of low amplitude- but more crucially, that contain frequencies centered very low. And the similarity to the St. Helens seismos is just too close. And the high frequency components are getting attenuated more by the ice.
edit on Sat Jan 14th 2012 by TrueAmerican because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 14 2012 @ 01:58 AM
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And oh here's more thoughts on this:

Ok, so we take your garden variety stratovolcano, and clamp down on that sukka with an icecap hundreds of feet thick. You are now a volcano that cannot move. You can't breathe. You are under a glacier. Vibrations are stifled. Quake durations for all sorts of seismic events now appear much shorter, like we see here. Short, spiky, and again, short in duration. The short spikes come about from rock fracture, but their normal, longer duration is going to be shortened because the rock is under millions of tons of ice. Think clampdown. A volcano experiencing normal magma or hydrothermal processes, but capped and stifled.

The icecap could also explain the very low "registered" amplitudes of the quakes, as again, the icecap attenuates much of the high frequencies, but also attenuates much of the low frequency energy, too. I hope to God they are not misreading this.

Sounds like a recipe for a catastrophic explosion, and floods and lahars like whoa, as gasses and pressure build up down there. In the grand scheme of scientific conservatism though, even if it's seismic, it's just another swarm at Rainier.
edit on Sat Jan 14th 2012 by TrueAmerican because: (no reason given)

edit on Sat Jan 14th 2012 by TrueAmerican because: (no reason given)




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