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1 August 2014
The IVM-Fund exists to assist volcano observatories with the smaller expenses that may not make it into a grant or a large instrumentation campaign, but which are nonetheless crucial to the day-to-day work of the scientists. In the last few years, they’ve been able to supply OVSAN and INSIVUMEH (the Guatemalan geologic survey) with a variety of pieces of field equipment – things like GPS units, digital cameras, thermal sensors, and rangefinders. They’ve also assisted the observatory in getting an internet connection hooked up (that’s how you get those lovely dome pictures on their webcam every day). But that kind of equipment, especially in a harsh environment with lots of moisture and volcanic ash, needs replacing every few years.
22 April 2013
As geologists, we spend a lot of time looking for the big picture. We want to know how a mountain range formed, or where tectonic plates were millions of years ago, or what global repercussions an eruption could have, or what effect the melting of an ice sheet could have on sea level around the world. We think about time in boggling spans that far exceed anything we could experience in a single lifetime – millions, even billions of years. And we are always trying to tell far-reaching stories to explain the history of our planet, using words and figures and photos.
28 November 2012
A quick note for today: It appears that activity at the Santiaguito lava dome complex in Guatemala has increased significantly, with collapses occurring at the lava flow on the southeastern flank of the Caliente dome. Plumes are visible on GOES satellite images and are reaching 5 km in height (plumes from ash-and-gas eruptions of Caliente are usually less than 1 km high).
9 November 2012
This week’s benchmark is another USGS one – this time in one of my favorite places, the Santiaguito Volcano Observatory in Guatemala!
26 October 2012
Today is the 110th anniversary of the second-largest eruption of the twentieth century – and if you don’t normally read this blog, it’s a good bet you’ve never heard of it. I’ve written about it before, but never on the date of the event! The culprit? Volcan Santa Maria in Guatemala. In October of 1902, following several months of significant earthquakes, Santa Maria experienced a VEI 6 Plinian eruption that completely devastated the countryside for miles around (much of it was, as it is now, covered with coffee plantations and small farms).
19 May 2012
The end of the semester is always a mess in terms of getting things done, and that includes writing blog posts. Compound this with a research trip to a national lab during which I’m spending a lot of time squinting at code, and I hope you’ll understand why my posting has been a bit sparse (and wildly varying in topic). There are a few posts that I’ve “orphaned” in the past few weeks, and I thought it would be worth it to do a quick rundown of things; I may or may not get to writing more about these in the future.