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Monte Amiata volcano, Italy

volcano number: 0101-002 (according to Volcanoes of the World, 1994 edition)

summit elevation: 1738 m

location: XXXXX°N, XXXXX°E

Monte Amiata

Monte Amiata seen from southwest on 1 December 1996. Note light dusting of snow in the summit region. Photo taken by Reinhard Lampe (Germany).

The following is summarized from Pichler (1970); there is no first-hand information about this volcano available for the moment.

Monte Amiata (with a summit elevation of 1738 m the highest mountain in the Tuscany region) is probably the most poorly known of the major Italian central volcanoes and volcanic complexes. It is a late Quaternary (until ca. 430 ka ago) complex mainly formed of ignimbrite sheets and trachytic lava domes with very subordinate more mafic lava flows erupted late in the activity. The volcanic area of Monte Amiata is roughly 85 km^2, the thickness of the volcanic pile reaching up to 600 m. Geothermal activity is still occurring at Monte Amiata (the Bagnore steam vents) which is used for geothermal energy production.

Monte Amiata

Another view of snow-covered Monte Amiata from southwest, 1 December 1996. Photo taken by Reinhard Lampe (Germany).

The activity of Monte Amiata during its main stage consisted of voluminous eruptions of rhyodacitic ignimbrites which show rheomorphism (i.e. flow of still-fluid ignimbrite immediately after emplacement). This activity was accompanied or followed by the formation of at least eight major lava domes along the main tectonic trends (that is, SW-NE and NNW-SSE). The latest significant rhyolitic activity in the Monte Amiata area was the emplacement of one large and two smaller flows, the larger one (south of the summit) reaching a length of 5 km while being up to 4 km wide. Smaller flows of more mafic (trachytic to latitic) lava were erupted during the last activity, mainly on the E flank of the summit lava dome.

No recent (that is, post-1963) volcanological studies of Monte Amiata are known (hints are extremely welcome), but there is continuing seismicity (a seismic swarm occurred as recently in 1977).

Monte Labbro

Monte Labbro, another volcanic dome complex lying near Monte Amiata, seen from the east, 1 December 1996. Photo taken by Reinhard Lampe (Germany).

Page set up on 24 June 1996, last modified on 16 December 1996