EGU General Assembly 2020
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Hydrothermal activity in a lava dome detected by combined seismic and muon monitoring

Marina Rosas-Carbajal1, Yves Le Gonidec2, Dominique Gibert2, Jean de Bremond d'Ars2, Jean-Christophe Ianigro3, and Jacques Marteau3
Marina Rosas-Carbajal et al.
  • 1Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris, France (
  • 2OSUR - Géosciences Rennes, Université Rennes 1, CNRS UMR 7154, Rennes, France.
  • 3Institut de Physique des 2 Infinis de Lyon, Université Claude Bernard, CNRS UMR 5822, Lyon, France.

Characterizing volcano-hydrothermal activity is crucial for understanding the dynamics of volcanos and the relation between surface observations and deep magmatic activity. It may be also relevant for detecting precursors to magmatic and phreatic eruptions. Traditional monitoring tools such as seismicity and deformation are not always sensitive to hydrothermal activity, therefore it is important to explore new tools that can provide complementary information about the system.

Muon imaging is increasingly used as a novel tool to complement standard geophysical methods in volcanology, allowing to image large volumes of a geological body from a single observation point. Continuous measurements of the muon flux enable to infer density changes in the system. In volcanic hydrothermal systems, this approach helps to characterize processes of steam formation, condensation, water infiltration and storage. Here we present the results of a combined study in the La Soufrière de Guadeloupe volcano (West Indies, France) where continuous measurements of muon tomography were acquired simultaneously to seismic noise. The combination of these two methods helps to characterize a short-term, shallow hydrothermal event, its localization, and the involved volumes in the volcano. The deployment of networks of various sensors including temperature probes, seismic antennas and cosmic muon telescopes around volcanoes could valuably contribute to detect precursors to more hazardous hydrothermal events.

How to cite: Rosas-Carbajal, M., Le Gonidec, Y., Gibert, D., de Bremond d'Ars, J., Ianigro, J.-C., and Marteau, J.: Hydrothermal activity in a lava dome detected by combined seismic and muon monitoring, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-13307,, 2020

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Presentation version 1 – uploaded on 04 May 2020
  • CC1: Comment on EGU2020-13307, Peter Lelièvre, 05 May 2020

    Hi Marina,

    It's interesting work that suggests some possibilities for imaging and monitoring. On your last slide, under "Remarks" you have "Need for models". Can you please expand on that? What models are you thinking about? What is your wish list?

    Have a great week,


  • AC1: Comment on EGU2020-13307, Marina Rosas-Carbajal, 06 May 2020

    Thank you Peter for your interest!

    I'm thinking of functional models, that can simulate the dynamics of the hydrothermal system. We could then assess the impact of this dynamics in different methods: gravity, muons, semismics, surface temperature and so on. It's complicates only with data correlation, and we're not necessarly sensitive to the same things.

    We can chat more about this if you want!