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Morphostratigraphic evolution of Popocatepetl Volcano, Mexico

Ramon Espinasa-Perena and Ana Lillian Martin-del Pozzo
Morphostratigraphic evolution of Popocatepetl Volcano, Mexico (in Neogene-Quaternary continental margin volcanism; a perspective from Mexico, Claus Siebe (editor), Jose Luis Macias (editor) and Gerardo J. Aguirre-Diaz (editor))
Special Paper - Geological Society of America (2006) 402: 115-137

Abstract

The evolution of Popocatepetl volcano was determined through the definition of rock units following morphostratigraphic criteria and detailed geological sections. The primitive volcano, named Nexpayantla, probably contemporaneous with Pies volcano, a part of the Iztaccihuatl volcanic complex to the north, grew beneath the site of today's cone. This volcano produced mainly andesitic to dacitic lava flows, presented flank activity in the form of several large dacitic lava domes, and was intruded by dacitic to rhyolitic dikes. The evolution of Nexpayantla volcano finished with a large collapse to the south that produced the Lower Tlayecac avalanche deposit. A new cone, Ventorrillo volcano, was built on the remains of Nexpayantla and was formed mostly by andesitic lava flows, but did not present any recognizable flank activity. Ventorrillo volcano collapsed in a large Bezymianny-type eruption toward the southwest, producing the Upper Tlayecac avalanche deposit and the Tochimilco pumice. The Calpan fan was derived from collapse and eruptions of Pies volcano. The present-day cone grew through the emission of many andesitic to dacitic lava flows, which were grouped into eroded or covered lava slopes (Malpais, Las Mesas, Metepec, and San Pedro Benito Juarez lava flows), and glaciated (Fraile lava flows) and nonglaciated (Las Cruces, Buenavista, Quimichule, Atlimiyaya, Chiquipixle, and Nealtican lava flows) lava slopes with marked features, both from the central vent and from flank eruptions, mainly to the northeast and southwest of the cone. The Ecatzingo and Ombligo-Xalipilcayatl flank vents formed two well-defined lineaments. The relative ages of the lava flows were determined through morphology, stratigraphic relations, and tephra cover. Two stages of growth were separated by a large Plinian eruption, which emplaced the Black and White (B&W) and Pumice with Andesite (PWA) fall deposits, which were used as stratigraphic markers. Another twelve Plinian pumice deposits are interstratified with the lava flows. Four large volcaniclastic fans and five valley fill deposits form the volcano's piedmont, and have resulted from the successive emplacement of pyroclastic flows, lahars, and fluvial deposits along several gullies that mark the lower slopes of the volcano. Glacier melting coincident with several of the Plinian eruptions could have been responsible for some of the extensive lahar deposits.


ISSN: 0072-1077
EISSN: 2331-219X
Coden: GSAPAZ
Serial Title: Special Paper - Geological Society of America
Serial Volume: 402
Title: Morphostratigraphic evolution of Popocatepetl Volcano, Mexico
Title: Neogene-Quaternary continental margin volcanism; a perspective from Mexico
Author(s): Espinasa-Perena, RamonMartin-del Pozzo, Ana Lillian
Author(s): Siebe, Clauseditor
Author(s): Macias, Jose Luiseditor
Author(s): Aguirre-Diaz, Gerardo J.editor
Affiliation: Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Instituto de Geofisica, Mexico City, Mexico
Affiliation: Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Departamento de Vulcanologia, Mexico City, Mexico
Pages: 115-137
Published: 2006
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
Meeting name: Penrose conference on Neogene-Quaternary continental margin volcanism; a perspective from Mexico
Meeting location: Metepec, MEX, Mexico
Meeting date: 20040112Jan. 12-16, 2004
References: 54
Accession Number: 2006-067796
Categories: Quaternary geology
Document Type: Serial Conference document
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. strat. cols., 1 table, geol. sketch maps
N19°01'60" - N19°03'00", W98°37'60" - W98°34'60"
Secondary Affiliation: Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Juriquilla Campus, MEX, Mexico
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 200639
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