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Scientific article
Open access
English

Ground-based Remote Sensing and Uncertainty Analysis of the Mass Eruption Rate associated with the 3-5 December 2015 Paroxysms of Mt Etna

Publication date2021
First online date2021-12-11
Abstract

During explosive eruptions, the real-time estimation of the mass eruption rate (MER) is challenging although crucial to mitigate the impact of erupted tephra. Microwave radar techniques at L and/or X bands, as well as thermal infrared imagery, can provide a reliable MER estimation in real time. Using lava fountains of 3-5 December 2015 at Mt. Etna (Italy) as test cases, we investigate the differences among all these remote sensing methods and introduce a new approach, called the Near Source Approach (NSA) using only X-band radar data. We also extend the Volcanic Advanced Radar Retrieval (VARR) methodology to estimate the gas-tephra mixture density near the volcanic crater. The analysis of uncertainty is carried out comparing the NSA with the Mass Continuity Approach (MCA), Top Plume Approach (TPA) and Surface Flux approach (SFA), already used to estimate the MER of other Etna explosive events. The analysis allows us to identify the optimal real-time MER retrieval strategy, showing the potential and limitations of each method. We show that the MCA method, entirely based on the Xband radar data processing, is the best strategy with a percentage uncertainty in the MER estimation of 22.3%, whereas other approaches exhibit e a higher uncertainty (26.4% for NSA, 30% for TPA and 31.6% for SFA).

eng
Funding
  • European Commission - European Network of Observatories and Research Infrastructures for Volcanology [731070]
Citation (ISO format)
MEREU, Luigi et al. Ground-based Remote Sensing and Uncertainty Analysis of the Mass Eruption Rate associated with the 3-5 December 2015 Paroxysms of Mt Etna. In: IEEE journal of selected topics in applied earth observations and remote sensing, 2021. doi: 10.1109/JSTARS.2021.3133946
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Article (Published version)
Identifiers
ISSN of the journal1939-1404
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Creation12/11/2021 10:41:00 AM
First validation12/11/2021 10:41:00 AM
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