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Conde V.,Chalmers University of Technology | Robidoux P.,University of Palermo | Avard G.,Observatorio Vulcanologico y Sismologico de Costa Rica OVSICORI UNA | Galle B.,Chalmers University of Technology | And 4 more authors.
International Journal of Earth Sciences | Year: 2014

Over the past few decades, substantial progress has been made to overcome the technical difficulties of continuously measuring volcanic SO2 emissions. However, measurements of CO2 emissions still present many difficulties, partly due to the lack of instruments that can directly measure CO2 emissions and partly due to its strong atmospheric background. In order to overcome these difficulties, a commonly taken approach is to combine differential optical absorption spectroscopy (DOAS) by using NOVAC scan-DOAS instruments for continuous measurements of crateric SO2 emissions, and electrochemical/NDIR multi-component gas analyser system (multi-GAS) instruments for measuring CO2/SO2 ratios of excerpts of the volcanic plume. This study aims to quantify the representativeness of excerpts of CO2/SO2 ratios measured by Multi-GAS as a fraction of the whole plume composition, by comparison with simultaneously measured CO2/SO2 ratios using cross-crater Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). Two study cases are presented: Telica volcano (Nicaragua), with a homogenous plume, quiescent degassing from a deep source and ambient temperature, and Turrialba volcano (Costa Rica), which has a non-homogeneous plume from three main sources with different compositions and temperatures. Our comparison shows that in our “easier case” (Telica), FTIR and Multi-GAS CO2/SO2 ratios agree within a factor about 3 %. In our “complicated case” (Turrialba), Multi-GAS and FTIR yield CO2/SO2 ratios differing by approximately 13–25 % at most. These results suggest that a fair estimation of volcanic CO2 emissions can be provided by the combination of DOAS and Multi-GAS instruments for volcanoes with similar degassing conditions as Telica or Turrialba. Based on the results of this comparison, we report that by the time our measurements were made, Telica and Turrialba were emitting approximately 100 and 1,000 t day−1 of CO2, respectively. © 2014, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Aiuppa A.,University of Palermo | Aiuppa A.,Italian National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology | Robidoux P.,University of Palermo | Tamburello G.,University of Palermo | And 7 more authors.
Earth and Planetary Science Letters | Year: 2014

Obtaining accurate estimates of the CO2 output from arc volcanism requires a precise understanding of the potential along-arc variations in volcanic gas chemistry, and ultimately of the magmatic gas signature of each individual arc segment. In an attempt to more fully constrain the magmatic gas signature of the Central America Volcanic Arc (CAVA), we present here the results of a volcanic gas survey performed during March and April 2013 at five degassing volcanoes within the Costa Rica-Nicaragua volcanic segment (CNVS). Observations of the volcanic gas plume made with a multicomponent gas analyzer system (Multi-GAS) have allowed characterization of the CO2/SO2-ratio signature of the plumes at Poás (0.30±0.06, mean ± SD), Rincón de la Vieja (27.0±15.3), and Turrialba (2.2±0.8) in Costa Rica, and at Telica (3.0±0.9) and San Cristóbal (4.2±1.3) in Nicaragua (all ratios on molar basis). By scaling these plume compositions to simultaneously measured SO2 fluxes, we estimate that the CO2 outputs at CNVS volcanoes range from low (25.5±11.0 tons/day at Poás) to moderate (918 to 1270 tons/day at Turrialba). These results add a new information to the still fragmentary volcanic CO2 output data set, and allow estimating the total CO2 output from the CNVS at 2835±1364 tons/day. Our novel results, with previously available information about gas emissions in Central America, are suggestive of distinct volcanic gas CO2/ST (= SO2 + H2S)-ratio signature for magmatic volatiles in Nicaragua (~3) relative to Costa Rica (~0.5-1.0). We also provide additional evidence for the earlier theory relating the CO2-richer signature of Nicaragua volcanism to increased contributions from slab-derived fluids, relative to more-MORB-like volcanism in Costa Rica. The sizeable along-arc variations in magmatic gas chemistry that the present study has suggested indicate that additional gas observations are urgently needed to more-precisely confine the volcanic CO2 from the CAVA, and from global arc volcanism. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.

Conde V.,Chalmers University of Technology | Bredemeyer S.,Leibniz Institute of Marine Science | Duarte E.,Observatorio Vulcanologico y Sismologico de Costa Rica OVSICORI UNA | Pacheco J.F.,Observatorio Vulcanologico y Sismologico de Costa Rica OVSICORI UNA | And 3 more authors.
International Journal of Earth Sciences | Year: 2014

In 1996, after 150 years of relative calm, Turrialba Volcano was reawakening. A visible plume and serious damage to surrounding vegetation due to acid rain are the most obvious signals. As part of the Network for Observation of Volcanic and Atmospheric Change project, four gas-monitoring stations were initially installed on the west flank of the volcano with the purpose of measuring sulphur dioxide emissions during this period of increased activity using the scanning-differential optical absorption spectroscopy technique. We present here the results of semicontinuous gas flux measurements over a period of 5 years (from 2008 to 2012), providing a novel data set that documents a relatively rapid increase in SO2 fluxes from around 350 t day−1 to around 4,000 t day−1 leading up to an eruptive period, followed by a gradual return to the former baseline values. Gas flux data were also compared with seismic data for selected periods of interest, providing insights into the link between degassing and seismicity. The most important result from this comparison is the identification of an inflexion point in the gas emissions followed by a clearly increasing trend in seismic activity, distinguishable 6 months prior to a phreatic eruptive event that occurred on 5 January 2010. This signal can be interpreted as a possible indicator of future eruptive events. Monitoring of SO2 thus complements seismic monitoring as a forecasting tool for eruptive events. Such monitoring is critical considering the proximity of Turrialba to the Central Valley, an area inhabited by more than 50 % of Costa Rica’s population. © 2013, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

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