This content will become publicly available on July 18, 2024
- NSF-PAR ID:
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- Page Range / eLocation ID:
- 161 to 172
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- Sponsoring Org:
- National Science Foundation
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Volcanic eruptions impact climate, subtly and profoundly. The size of an eruption is only loosely correlated with the severity of its climate effects, which can include changes in surface temperature, ozone levels, stratospheric dynamics, precipitation, and ocean circulation. We review the processes—in magma chambers, eruption columns, and the oceans, biosphere, and atmosphere—that mediate the climate response to an eruption. A complex relationship between eruption size, style, duration, and the subsequent severity of the climate response emerges. We advocate for a new, consistent metric, the Volcano-Climate Index, to categorize climate response to eruptions independent of eruption properties and spanning the full range of volcanic activity, from brief explosive eruptions to long-lasting flood basalts. A consistent metric for categorizing the climate response to eruptions that differ in size, style, and duration is critical for establishing the relationshipbetween the severity and the frequency of such responses aiding hazard assessments, and furthering understanding of volcanic impacts on climate on timescales of years to millions of years. ▪ We review the processes driving the rocky relationship between eruption size and climate response and propose a Volcano-Climate Index. ▪ Volcanic eruptions perturb Earth's climate on a range of timescales, with key open questions regarding how processes in the magmatic system, eruption column, and atmosphere shape the climate response to volcanism. ▪ A Volcano-Climate Index will provide information on the volcano-climate severity-frequency distribution, analogous to earthquake hazards. ▪ Understanding of the frequency of specific levels of volcanic climate effects will aid hazard assessments, planning, and mitigation of societal impacts.more » « less
Classical mechanisms of volcanic eruptions mostly involve pressure buildup and magma ascent towards the surface1. Such processes produce geophysical and geochemical signals that may be detected and interpreted as eruption precursors1–3. On 22 May 2021, Mount Nyiragongo (Democratic Republic of the Congo), an open-vent volcano with a persistent lava lake perched within its summit crater, shook up this interpretation by producing an approximately six-hour-long flank eruption without apparent precursors, followed—rather than preceded—by lateral magma motion into the crust. Here we show that this reversed sequence was most likely initiated by a rupture of the edifice, producing deadly lava flows and triggering a voluminous 25-km-long dyke intrusion. The dyke propagated southwards at very shallow depth (less than 500 m) underneath the cities of Goma (Democratic Republic of the Congo) and Gisenyi (Rwanda), as well as Lake Kivu. This volcanic crisis raises new questions about the mechanisms controlling such eruptions and the possibility of facing substantially more hazardous events, such as effusions within densely urbanized areas, phreato-magmatism or a limnic eruption from the gas-rich Lake Kivu. It also more generally highlights the challenges faced with open-vent volcanoes for monitoring, early detection and risk management when a significant volume of magma is stored close to the surface.
With approximately 800 million people globally living within 100 km of a volcano, it is essential that we build a reliable observation system capable of delivering early warnings to potentially impacted nearby populations. Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) and satellite Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) document comprehensive ground motions or ruptures near, and at, the Earth’s surface and may be used to detect and analyze natural hazard phenomena. These datasets may also be combined to improve the accuracy of deformation results. Here, we prepare a differential interferometric SAR (DInSAR) time series and integrate it with GNSS data to create a fused dataset with enhanced accuracy of 3D ground motions over Hawaii island from November 2015 to April 2021. We present a comparison of the raw datasets against the fused time series and give a detailed account of observed ground deformation leading to the May 2018 and December 2020 volcanic eruptions. Our results provide important new estimates of the spatial and temporal dynamics of the 2018 Kilauea volcanic eruption. The methodology presented here can be easily repeated over any region of interest where an SAR scene overlaps with GNSS data. The results will contribute to diverse geophysical studies, including but not limited to the classification of precursory movements leading to major eruptions and the advancement of early warning systems.more » « less
Since the 1919 foundation of the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth’s Interior (IAVCEI), the fields of volcano seismology and acoustics have seen dramatic advances in instrumentation and techniques, and have undergone paradigm shifts in the understanding of volcanic seismo-acoustic source processes and internal volcanic structure. Some early twentieth-century volcanological studies gave equal emphasis to barograph (infrasound and acoustic-gravity wave) and seismograph observations, but volcano seismology rapidly outpaced volcano acoustics and became the standard geophysical volcano-monitoring tool. Permanent seismic networks were established on volcanoes (for example) in Japan, the Philippines, Russia, and Hawai‘i by the 1950s, and in Alaska by the 1970s. Large eruptions with societal consequences generally catalyzed the implementation of new seismic instrumentation and led to operationalization of research methodologies. Seismic data now form the backbone of most local ground-based volcano monitoring networks worldwide and play a critical role in understanding how volcanoes work. The computer revolution enabled increasingly sophisticated data processing and source modeling, and facilitated the transition to continuous digital waveform recording by about the 1990s. In the 1970s and 1980s, quantitative models emerged for long-period (LP) event and tremor sources in fluid-driven cracks and conduits. Beginning in the 1970s, early models for volcano-tectonic (VT) earthquake swarms invoking crack tip stresses expanded to involve stress transfer into the wall rocks of pressurized dikes. The first deployments of broadband seismic instrumentation and infrasound sensors on volcanoes in the 1990s led to discoveries of new signals and phenomena. Rapid advances in infrasound technology; signal processing, analysis, and inversion; and atmospheric propagation modeling have now established the role of regional (15–250 km) and remote (> 250 km) ground-based acoustic systems in volcano monitoring. Long-term records of volcano-seismic unrest through full eruptive cycles are providing insight into magma transport and eruption processes and increasingly sophisticated forecasts. Laboratory and numerical experiments are elucidating seismo-acoustic source processes in volcanic fluid systems, and are observationally constrained by increasingly dense geophysical field deployments taking advantage of low-power, compact broadband, and nodal technologies. In recent years, the fields of volcano geodesy, seismology, and acoustics (both atmospheric infrasound and ocean hydroacoustics) are increasingly merging. Despite vast progress over the past century, major questions remain regarding source processes, patterns of volcano-seismic unrest, internal volcanic structure, and the relationship between seismic unrest and volcanic processes.
Seismic waves are commonly used to monitor unrest before, during, and after volcanic eruptions. The source of seismic tremor during a sustained explosive volcanic eruption is not well understood. Recent observations of the 2016 eruption of Pavlof Volcano, Alaska, revealed a change in the relationship (hysteresis) between ash plume height and seismic amplitude over time. Based on similarities in physical processes and observed seismic tremor in rivers, we explore two key sources of seismic energy in the volcanic conduit: (1) forces exerted by particle impacts and (2) dynamic pressure changes by the turbulent flow. We develop a physical model calculating the seismic power spectral density (PSD), where forces on the conduit wall are convolved with the Green's function for Rayleigh waves. Using reasonable eruption parameters, the model is able to reproduce the frequency spectrum from the Pavlof eruption, although the modeled amplitudes are generally lower. We test the relative importance of different eruption parameters, including grain size, velocity, and conduit dimensions. We find that turbulence generally dominates over particle impacts. However, to reach the PSD amplitude during the Pavlof eruption, large grain sizes are required, as they have the greatest relative influence on the modeled amplitude. The hysteresis between plume height and seismic amplitude can then potentially be explained by grain size changes. The PSD shape is mostly determined by the Rayleigh‐wave quality factor Q, and substantial variations in seismic amplitude can be modeled assuming a constant mass eruption rate.