Stromboli is a volcanic island in the Tyrrhenian Sea off Sicily. The 12 square kilometer island is part of the Aeolian Islands archipelago and rises 924 meters above sea level. For 2,300 years the volcano is continuously active, which has earned it a reputation as a lighthouse of the Mediterranean Sea.
The volcanic island was created about 40,000 years ago. Initially the volcano Vancori formed, and then collapsed 10,000 years ago. 500 m further north a second stratovolcano formed, Cima, which reached a height of 918 meters and principally emitted andesitic magmas. Cima caved in at the beginning of the post-glacial period. What remains is the rim which visitors today see the eruptions from the new crater. This crater is actually Stromboli.
The normal duration of activity at Stromboli is interrupted every few years through special events. On 11 September 1930 there was a large explosion which propelled lava bombs to near by villages. A phase of continuous lava fountains, and later two ash flows, began which had great similarities with pyroclastic flows. Six people died due to these ash flows.
In December 2002, a fissure vent below the crater opened on the steep slope of the Sciara del Fuoco, and lava flowed out. After a few hours it reached the coast and spilled out into the sea. The fissure vent opening was accompanied by a large landslide which caused a small tsunami and damaged many buildings along the waterfront.
Another event occurred in March 2007. Again, a fissure vent opened on the Sciara del Fuoco and this time it sent two lava flows into the sea. Within days, a lava delta, extending approximately 50 meters into the water, was formed.
In August 2014 lava flowed again into the sea. This time there were very nice littoral eruptions on the coast. In the previous months, short lava flows were often generated in the area of the crater. There were also strong strombolian eruptions.
Current activity of StromboliAfter the effusive eruption of 2014 it became calmer around Stromboli. Its famous continuous activity paused and was interrupted only by sporadic eruptions. Since May 2017, the volcano has been more awake and resumed its regular activity. The eruptions are not as strong as in the months before the lava flow of 2014.
In summer 2017 the activity increased further. Since then, calmer phases have alternated with strong episodes.
In May 2019 a high phase of activity began. It peaked on 3 July with a particularly strong paroxysmal eruption. During the strongest explosion of the last decades, volcanic ash was transported up to an altitude of 9,100 meters. New chimneys were built in the west of the crater terrace. Lava flows began to flow. Until now (mid August 2019) the activity has increased. However, the ascent is also closed.