Volcano Seismology PhD Student
I work within the Cambridge volcano seismology group investigating shallow crustal seismicity in Iceland, and more specifically the microseismicity associated with melt-injection events in large volcanic systems. Lying on a divergent plate boundary Iceland experiences a great deal of volcanism, as 'rift zones' accommodate the spreading through faulting and injection of molten rock through the crust. These crustal intrusions are incredibly common (on a geological timescale!) but the dynamics of their propagation are not fully understood. A number of features allow us to analyse such events, including the ground deformation following emplacement of material, and the earthquakes that arise from rock fracture and failure as the magma forces its way through the crust. Our group operates an extensive and dense network of seismic instruments in central Iceland which records local seismicity, and from this we can ascertain the physical source processes at play during these melt intrusion events.
Fieldwork in Iceland
Fieldwork isn't glamorous but we do travel round some beautiful landscapes..
Bárðarbunga-Holuhraun Dike Intrusion 2014
Over two weeks in August 2014 we tracked earthquakes accompanying a 46 km lateral propagation of melt in Iceland, from the subglacial Bardarbunga volcano to the Holuhraun lava field, which culminated in a spectacular 6 month long fissure eruption. Our instrument network recorded the microseismicity in unprecedented detail, and from this we can gain new insights into the characteristics and location of seismicity and its evolution, the rock failure and fracture mechanisms producing the earthquakes, their distribution of magnitudes and more.
Bárðarbunga-Holuhraun Dike Seismicity
Volcanology ; Geophysics ; Seismology