Seismologists, Ecuadorian officials, area residents could benefit from improved data
A rumbling South American volcano has gone wireless: Computer scientists at Harvard University have teamed up with seismologists at the University of New Hampshire and University of North Carolina to fit an Ecuadorian peak with a wireless array to monitor volcanic activity. The sensors should help researchers, officials, and local residents understand and plan for eruptions of Tungarahua, one of Ecuadors most active volcanoes in recent years.
The researchers installed the wireless network on Tungarahua and captured 54 hours of data during a recent trip to the 5,016-meter mountain. The wireless system could eventually replace the wired sensors now used on Tungarahua and many other volcanoes. "Systems used to monitor volcanic activity rapidly capture huge amounts of data," says Matthew D. Welsh, assistant professor of computer science in the Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Harvard. "The wired systems now used to monitor Tungarahua and other volcanoes are expensive, quickly exhaust batteries, and force people to trek up the slopes of a volcano every few days to retrieve the data that has accumulated."
Steve Bradt | EurekAlert!
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