Instrumentation includes 5 LaCoste and Romberg gravity meters, three of which have electrostatic feedback that allows for the continuous measurement of gravity change (e.g. Earth tides). These instruments are used on numerous volcanoes around the world (e.g., Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Iceland, etc.) to investigate subsurface density and mass changes and to help better understand the physical processes of magmatic systems.
We have 2 System 500 and 2 System 200 Leica dual-frequency differential GPS receivers and software. These are used to monitor large deformation networks in Italy and Mexico, while Real-Time Kinematic GPS techniques are being applied at various sites. The GPS is supplemented by 2 Wild Total Station TC 1600 theodolites and 1 Leica NA 2000 digital level. Deformation modelling is carried out by a variety of methods, including ELFEN Finite Element Modelling software.
We can also study the composition of a volcanic gas plumes by Open-Path Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy. The power of the FT-IR technique lies in the ability to measure ratios of gas concentrations and their changes through time. The full complement of gases retrieved from the FT-IR spectra includes SO2, CO2, hydrogen fluoride (HF), and hydrogen chloride (HCl).
Fluid Dynamics Laboratory
Experimental investigation of fluid dynamic processes that control the behaviour of lava flows and other volcanic phenomena are investigated using laboratory experiments with analogue materials. Our facilities include heater/cooler units, pumps, thermocouple data loggers, video and stills cameras, and purpose-built tanks constructed in the Open University Science and Technology Workshop.
We have a variety of Minolta/Land Instruments infrared thermometers for use in the field that can measure across the full range of volcanic temperatures.
Lead Academic -
Tel: +44 (0)1908 65 (office)