Atmospheric waves and global seismoacoustic observations of the January 2022 Hunga eruption, Tonga


The 15 January 2022 climactic eruption of Hunga volcano, Tonga, produced an explosion in the atmosphere of a size that has not been documented in the modern geophysical record. The event generated a broad range of atmospheric waves observed globally by various ground-based and spaceborne instrumentation networks. Most prominent is the surface-guided Lamb wave (≲0.01 Hz), which we observed propagating for four (+three antipodal) passages around the Earth over six days. Based on Lamb wave amplitudes, the climactic Hunga explosion was comparable in size to that of the 1883 Krakatau eruption. The Hunga eruption produced remarkable globally-detected infrasound (0.01–20 Hz), long-range (~10,000 km) audible sound, and ionospheric perturbations. Seismometers worldwide recorded pure seismic and air-to-ground coupled waves. Air-to-sea coupling likely contributed to fast-arriving tsunamis. We highlight exceptional observations of the atmospheric waves.


Robin S. Matoza1, David Fee2, Jelle D. Assink3, Alexandra M. Iezzi1, David N. Green4, Keehoon Kim5, Liam Toney2, Thomas Lecocq6, Siddharth Krishnamoorthy7, Jean-Marie Lalande8, Kiwamu Nishida9, Kent L. Gee10, Matthew M. Haney11, Hugo D. Ortiz1, Quentin Brissaud12, Léo Martire7, Lucie Rolland13, Panagiotis Vergados7, Alexandra Nippress4, Junghyun Park14, Shahar Shani-Kadmiel3, Alex Witsil2, Stephen Arrowsmith14, Corentin Caudron15, Shingo Watada9, Anna B. Perttu16,17, Benoit Taisne16,18, Pierrick Mialle19, Alexis Le Pichon20, Julien Vergoz20, Patrick Hupe21, Philip S. Blom22, Roger Waxler23, Silvio De Angelis24, Jonathan B. Snively25, Adam T. Ringler26, Robert E. Anthony26, Arthur D. Jolly27, Geoff Kilgour28, Gil Averbuch14, Maurizio Ripepe29, Mie Ichihara9, Alejandra Arciniega-Ceballos30, Elvira Astafyeva31, Lars Ceranna21, Sandrine Cevuard32, Il-Young Che33, Rodrigo De Negri1, Carl W. Ebeling34, Läslo G. Evers3, Luis E. Franco-Marin35, Thomas B. Gabrielson36, Katrin Hafner37, R. Giles Harrison38, Attila Komjathy7, Giorgio Lacanna29, John Lyons11, Kenneth A. Macpherson2, Emanuele Marchetti29, Kathleen F. McKee39, Robert J. Mellors34, Gerardo Mendo-Pérez40, T. Dylan Mikesell41, Edhah Munaibari13, Mayra Oyola-Merced7, Iseul Park33, Christoph Pilger21, Cristina Ramos42, Mario C. Ruiz42, Roberto Sabatini25, Hans F. Schwaiger11, Dorianne Tailpied16, Carrick Talmadge23, Jérôme Vidot8, Jeremy Webster22, David C. Wilson26


1. Department of Earth Science and Earth Research Institute, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA, US

2. Wilson Alaska Technical Center and Alaska Volcano Observatory, Geophysical Institute, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK, USA

3. R&D Department of Seismology and Acoustics, Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI), De Bilt, Netherlands

4. AWE Blacknest, Brimpton, Reading, UK

5. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA, USA

6. Seismology-Gravimetry, Royal Observatory of Belgium, Brussels, Belgium

7. NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA, USA

8. CNRM, Universit. de Toulouse, M.t.o-France, CNRS, Lannion, France

9. Earthquake Research Institute, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan

10. Department of Physics and Astronomy, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT, USA

11. US Geological Survey (USGS), Alaska Volcano Observatory, Anchorage, AK, USA

12. Norwegian Seismic Array (NORSAR), Kjeller, Norway

13. Universit. C.te d’Azur, Observatoire de la C.te d’Azur, CNRS, IRD, G.oazur, Sophia Antipolis, Valbonne, France

14. Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, TX, USA

15. Laboratoire G-Time, Department of Geosciences, Environment and Society, Universit. libre de Bruxelles, Brussels, Belgium

16. Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

17. Volcanic Risk Solutions, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

18. Asian School of the Environment, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

19. Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), Vienna, Austria

20. CEA, DAM, DIF, Arpajon, France

21. BGR (Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources), Hannover, Germany

22. Geophysics Group, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM, USA

23. National Center for Physical Acoustics, University of Mississippi, University, MS, USA School of Environmental Sciences, University ofLiverpool, Liverpool, UK

24. School of Environmental Sciences, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK

25. Department of Physical Sciences and Center for Space and Atmospheric Research (CSAR), Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach, FL, USA

26. USGS Albuquerque Seismological Laboratory, Albuquerque, NM, USA

27. USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, Hilo, HI, USA

28. GNS Science, Wairakei Research Centre, Taupō, New Zealand

29. Department of Earth Sciences, University of Florence, Florence, Italy

30. Departamento de Vulcanolog.a, Instituto de Geof.sica, Universidad Nacional Aut.noma de M.xico, Mexico City, Mexico

31. Universit. de Paris, Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris, Paris, France

32. Vanuatu Meteorology and Geohazards Department, Port Vila, Vanuatu

33. KIGAM (Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources), Daejeon, Korea

34. Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA, USA

35. Volcanological Observatory of the Southern Andes (OVDAS), National Geology and Mining Service (SERNAGEOMIN), Chile

36. Graduate Program in Acoustics, Penn State University, State College, PA, USA

37. Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS), Washington, DC, USA

38. Department of Meteorology, University of Reading, UK

39. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, USA

40. Posgrado en Ciencias de la Tierra, Universidad Nacional Aut.noma de M.xico, Mexico City, Mexico

41. Norwegian Geotechnical Institute (NGI), Oslo, Norway

42. Instituto Geof.sico, Escuela Polit.cnica Nacional, Quito, Ecuador

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