Post-Event Field Survey of the 22 December 2018 Anak Krakatau Tsunami


On 22 December 2018, volcanic activity of Anak Krakatau, Indonesia, triggered a tsunami that caused more than 437 casualties on surrounding coastlines. Soon after the event, before the physical evidence of the tsunami disappeared, a postevent field survey was carried out. Measurements of tsunami inundation and impact are important to better model and understand the tsunami triggering processes to support future tsunami mitigation efforts. The impacted area on the western coast of Banten, Java Island, was surveyed to acquire tsunami inundation and run-up height data, together with field characteristics of the tsunami deposits. Data were acquired at 36 locations along three transects of tsunami deposits. From these, the maximum tsunami run-up height (up to 13 m) in the surveyed locations was identified on the southern part of the Banten Coast in the Tanjung Lesung area, an area located to the south of Anak Krakatau Volcano. The tsunami deposits were relatively thin along the transect, including a fining upward sequence without any clear evidence of fresh volcanic material, in disagreement with other reported volcano-induced tsunami deposits. Characteristics of the 2018 Anak Krakatau tsunami deposits are more similar to earthquake-induced tsunami deposits, hence complicating the paleotsunami reconstruction in Sunda Strait, where tsunami mechanisms are from both volcano and earthquakes along the Sunda subduction zone.

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Data of 2018 Palu tsunami deposit taken from Putra et al. (2019)


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The fieldwork was funded by the Research Center for Geotechnology. We would like to thank Prof. Alexander Rabinovich (Editor-in-Chief of this journal) and anonymous reviewers for their comments that significantly improved our manuscript. Prof. David Tappin of British Geological Survey and Jonathan Griffin of Geoscience Australia are thanked for improving the English of this paper.

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P.S.P. led and coordinated the fieldwork and wrote the manuscript. P.S.P., S.H.N., and V.S. conducted the field survey. S.H.N. worked on almost all of the figures and contributed to the draft writing. E.Y., A.A., and K.A.M. contributed to the writing of this manuscript.

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Correspondence to Purna Sulastya Putra.

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Putra, P.S., Aswan, A., Maryunani, K.A. et al. Post-Event Field Survey of the 22 December 2018 Anak Krakatau Tsunami. Pure Appl. Geophys. 177, 2477–2492 (2020).

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  • 2018 Anak Krakatau tsunami
  • postevent field survey
  • tsunami deposit
  • volcanogenic tsunami
  • tsunami run-up
  • flow depth