Elucidating Timescales of magma recharge and movement for the 2013 – present eruption at Colima Volcano, Mexico

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Gerallt Hughes

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Start Year

2017 (Cohort 4)

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PhD Project
PhD Title

Elucidating Timescales of magma recharge and movement for the 2013 – present eruption at Colima Volcano, Mexico

Research Theme

Solid Earth Dynamics

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Volcán de Colima is one of the most active volcanoes in the Americas and present a serious threat to the 300,000 people living within 40 km of the volcano. Previous work has identified abrupt transitions between effusive and highly explosive Plinian eruption phases. Previous studies have linked these large eruptions at Colima with injections of new magmas. Despite significant work and constant monitoring over the last few decades, the magma plumbing system is still poorly known, and the relationship to volcano monitoring data have not been fully explored. This poses a major limitation on accurate hazard assessment at Colima. The project will use petrological, geochemical and mineral chemistry studies to constrain the magma storage conditions during the current 2013-present phase of eruption, and diffusion modelling to understand the dynamics of the plumbing system and constrain timescales of magma recharge events. The project will also combine monitoring data with petrological information to construct models of the magmatic system from source to eruption. The results of the project will be critical to inform hazard assessment a dangerous volcano in a rapidly developing country and will address central questions which will help to enhance monitoring and forecasting of volcanic hazards worldwide.

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