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Advances in Geosciences An open-access journal for refereed proceedings and special publications
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Volume 14 | Copyright
Adv. Geosci., 14, 35-40, 2008
https://doi.org/10.5194/adgeo-14-35-2008
© Author(s) 2008. This work is licensed under
the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 License.

  02 Jan 2008

02 Jan 2008

Satellite-based detection of volcanic sulphur dioxide from recent eruptions in Central and South America

D. Loyola1, J. van Geffen2, P. Valks1, T. Erbertseder3, M. Van Roozendael2, W. Thomas4, W. Zimmer1, and K. Wißkirchen3 D. Loyola et al.
  • 1German Aerospace Center (DLR), Remote Sensing Technology Institute (IMF), 82234 Wessling, Germany
  • 2Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy, Av. Circulaire 3, 1180 Brussels, Belgium
  • 3German Aerospace Center (DLR), German Remote Sensing Data Center (DFD), 82234 Wessling, Germany
  • 4Deutscher Wetterdienst (DWD), P.O. Box 10 04 65, 63004 Offenbach, Germany

Abstract. Volcanic eruptions can emit large amounts of rock fragments and fine particles (ash) into the atmosphere, as well as several gases, including sulphur dioxide (SO2). These ejecta and emissions are a major natural hazard, not only to the local population, but also to the infrastructure in the vicinity of volcanoes and to aviation. Here, we describe a methodology to retrieve quantitative information about volcanic SO2 plumes from satellite-borne measurements in the UV/Visible spectral range. The combination of a satellite-based SO2 detection scheme and a state-of-the-art 3D trajectory model enables us to confirm the volcanic origin of trace gas signals and to estimate the plume height and the effective emission height. This is demonstrated by case-studies for four selected volcanic eruptions in South and Central America, using the GOME, SCIAMACHY and GOME-2 instruments.

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