Title

Characterising volcanic cycles at Soufriere Hills Volcano, Montserrat: Time series analysis of multi-parameter satellite data

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

10-1-2015

Abstract

© 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.. The identification of cyclic volcanic activity can elucidate underlying eruption dynamics and aid volcanic hazard mitigation. Whilst satellite datasets are often analysed individually, here we exploit the multi-platform NASA A-Train satellite constellation to cross-correlate cyclical signals identified using complementary measurement techniques at Soufriere Hills Volcano (SHV), Montserrat. In this paper we present a Multi-taper (MTM) Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) analysis of coincident SO2 and thermal infrared (TIR) satellite measurements at SHV facilitating the identification of cyclical volcanic behaviour. These measurements were collected by the Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI) and Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) (respectively) in the A-Train. We identify a correlating cycle in both the OMI and MODIS data (54-58days), with this multi-week feature attributable to episodes of dome growth. The ~50day cycles were also identified in ground-based SO2 data at SHV, confirming the validity of our analysis and further corroborating the presence of this cycle at the volcano. In addition a 12day cycle was identified in the OMI data, previously attributed to variable lava effusion rates on shorter timescales. OMI data also display a one week (7-8days) cycle attributable to cyclical variations in viewing angle resulting from the orbital characteristics of the Aura satellite. Longer period cycles possibly relating to magma intrusion were identified in the OMI record (102-, 121-, and 159 days); in addition to a 238-day cycle identified in the MODIS data corresponding to periodic destabilisation of the lava dome. Through the analysis of reconstructions generated from cycles identified in the OMI and MODIS data, periods of unrest were identified, including the major dome collapse of 20th May 2006 and significant explosive event of 3rd January 2009. Our analysis confirms the potential for identification of cyclical volcanic activity through combined analysis of satellite data, which would be of particular value at poorly monitored volcanic systems.

Publication Title

Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research

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