EGU21-14994, updated on 10 Jan 2024
EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2024. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Temporal evolution of 3He/4He isotopic ratio at Dos Aguas cold mineral spring, La Palma, Canary Islands

Eleazar Padrón1,2, Nemesio M. Pérez1,2, Gladys V. Melián1,2, Hirochika Sumino3, Mar Alonso1,2, Guillermo Recio1, María Asensio-Ramos1, Fátima Rodríguez1, and Luca D’Auria1,2
Eleazar Padrón et al.
  • 1Instituto Volcanológico de Canarias (INVOLCAN), Granadilla de Abona, Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain (
  • 2Instituto Tecnológico y de Energías Renovables (ITER), Granadilla de Abona, Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain
  • 3Department of General Systems Studies, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Komaba, Meguro-ku,Tokyo, Japan

Recent volcanic activity of La Palma island, the fifth in extension (706 km2) and the second in elevation (2,423 m a.s.l.) of the Canarian archipelago, has taken place exclusively in the last 123 ka at the southern part of the island, where Cumbre Vieja volcano, the most active basaltic volcano in the Canaries, has been constructed. A total of seven volcanic eruptions have been reported along the main north-south rift zone of Cumbre Vieja in the last 500 years. On October 7th and 13rd, 2017, two remarkable seismic swarms interrupted a seismic silence of 46 years in Cumbre Vieja volcano with earthquakes located beneath Cumbre Vieja volcano at depths ranging between 14 and 28 km with a maximum magnitude of 2.7. Five more seismic swarms were registered in 2020.

3He/4He ratio has been monitored at Dos Aguas cold mineral spring in La Palma Island since 1991 to date as an important volcano monitoring tool able to provide early warning signal of future volcanic unrest episodes. Magmatic helium emission studies have demonstrated to be sensitive and excellent precursors of magmatic processes occurring at depth. The highest 3He/4He ratio reported to date from the Canarian archipelago has been measured at Dos Aguas: 10.24 RA (being RA the ratio in atmospheric helium) (Padrón et al., 2015). This value is higher than any value found either in the lavas or terrestrial fluid in the Canary Islands, and indicates an important mantle contribution.  According to the temporal evolution of the magmatic component of helium at Dos Aguas, we suggest the occurrence of aseismic magma rising episodes beneath La Palma within the upper mantle towards an ephemeral magma reservoir in the period 2007-2017. However, in the period 2017-2020, magma rising have produced seismic swarms that were accompanied also by the highest 3He/4He ratio measured at Dos Aguas (10.42 RA); both geochemical and geophysical signals confirm an upward magma migration towards a subcrustal magma reservoir beneath La Palma island.


Padrón et al., (2015). Bull Volcanol 77:28. DOI 10.1007/s00445-015-0914-2

How to cite: Padrón, E., Pérez, N. M., Melián, G. V., Sumino, H., Alonso, M., Recio, G., Asensio-Ramos, M., Rodríguez, F., and D’Auria, L.: Temporal evolution of 3He/4He isotopic ratio at Dos Aguas cold mineral spring, La Palma, Canary Islands, EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-14994,, 2021.

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