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Volcano infrasonic signals and magma degassing: first-order experimental insights and application to Stromboli

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article


<mark>Journal publication date</mark>09/2013
<mark>Journal</mark>Earth and Planetary Science Letters
Number of pages11
Pages (from-to)169-179
Early online date22/07/13
<mark>Original language</mark>English


We demonstrate the rise and expansion of a gas slug as a fluid dynamic source mechanism for infrasonic signals generated by gas puffing and impulsive explosions at Stromboli. The fluid dynamics behind the rise, expansion and burst of gas slugs in the confines of an experimental tube can be characterised into different regimes. Passive expansion occurs for small gas masses, where negligible dynamic gas over-pressure develops during bubble ascent and, prior to burst, meniscus oscillation forms an important infrasonic source. With increasing gas mass, a transition regime emerges where dynamic gas over-pressure is significant. For larger gas masses, this regime transforms to fully explosive behaviour, where gas over-pressure dominates as an infrasonic source and bubble bursting is not a critical factor. The rate of change of excess pressure in the experimental tube was used to generate synthetic infrasonic waveforms. Qualitatively, the waveforms compare well to infrasonic waveforms measured from a range of eruptions at Stromboli. Assuming pressure continuity during flow through the vent, and applying dimensionless arguments from the first-order experiments, allows estimation of eruption metrics from infrasonic signals measured at Stromboli. Values of bubble length, gas mass and over-pressure calculated from infrasonic signals are in excellent agreement with those derived by independent means for eruptions at Stromboli, therefore providing a method of estimating eruption metrics from infrasonic measurement.