Changbaishan (Baekdusan, Tianchi) volcano, China/North Korea

The Changbaishan volcano located at the border of China and North Korea, is known as the “author” of the second greatest volcanic  eruption on the globe in the last one thousand years after Tambora in 1815 – the so-called “Millennium eruption” that occurred, by existing estimates, between 938 and 946AD (Wei et al., 2013). This eruption created the Tianchi caldera on top of a preexisting stratovolcano and marked the general change in petrochemistry of products from trachyte to comendite. Since then, the volcano produced several minor eruptions and had a remarkable period of unrest in 2002-2005, with increased seismicity, gas emission and other evidence for an impending eruption, which nevertheless never happened. Was this magma recharge or volatile exhalation at depth or both? What should be expected from this volcano in the future? Are there other potentially active volcanic centers in the area? To answer these questions, an information model of the domain of knowledge about the volcanism at the edge of Sino-Korean craton is needed. This model is being created by the event bush method in collaboration with Haiquan Wei, Key Laboratory of Active Tectonics and Volcano, Institute of Geology, CEA, Beijing, China.


Reference cited:

Wei, H., Liu, G., and Gill, J., 2013. Review of eruptive activity at Tianchi volcano, Changbaishan, northeast China: implications for possible future eruptions. Bull Volcanol (2013) 75:706. DOI 10.1007/s00445-013-0706-5.



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Summit caldera lake at Tianchi Volcano, China/North Korea. Photo by Cyril Pshenichny