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The Stories Volcanic Crystals Tell

20 Nov 2016

Eruptions at Mount Gede volcano in Java, Indonesia, are few and far between. Its last eruption occurred almost six decades ago. Associate Professor Fidel Costa, from the Earth Observatory of Singapore’s volcano group, has been studying Mt. Gede to gather critical information on the warning signs given before an eruption.

Together with his colleagues at the Center for Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation in Indonesia, Assoc. Prof Costa studied Mt. Gede’s volcanic crystals with a newly developed technique called diffusion chronometry. Using this technique, Assoc. Prof Costa and his postgraduate student Mr Daniel Krimer studied thin cross-sections of volcanic crystals under a microscope. This enabled them to estimate the amount of time volcanic processes take before an eruption, much like a timeline leading up to an eruption.

Science speaks to Assoc. Prof Costa about his work on the Javanese volcano, as well as other volcanologists, to understand more about how volcanic crystals provide valuable insight into volcanic processes and how eruptions unfold.

Please click here to read more about Assoc. Prof Costa’s work on the towering Mt. Gede volcano.