UK Scientists Using Drones For Volcano Studies
” A team of volcanologists and engineers from the Universities of Cambridge and Bristol has collected measurements from directly within volcanic clouds, together with visual and thermal images of inaccessible volcano peaks.
During a ten-day research trip, the team carried out many proof-of-concept flights at the summits of both Volcán de Fuego and Volcán de Pacaya in Guatemala. Using lightweight modern sensors they measured temperature, humidity and thermal data within the volcanic clouds and took images of multiple eruptions in real-time.”
” This is one of the first times that bespoke fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have been used at a volcano such as Fuego, where the lack of close access to the summit vent has prevented robust gas measurements. Funding from the Cabot Institute has helped the team to develop technologies to enable this capability. The UAVs were successfully flown at distances of up to 8 km away, and at a height of over 3 km above the launch site.
The group plan to return to Guatemala later in the year with a wider range of sensors including a gas analyser, a four-stage filter pack; carbon stubs for ash sampling; thermal and visual cameras, and atmospheric sensors.”