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Volcanic Environments: Robots for Exploration and Measurement

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5 Author(s)
Muscato, G. ; DIEEI, Univ. degli Studi di Catania, Catania, Italy ; Bonaccorso, F. ; Cantelli, L. ; Longo, D.
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The study of volcanic activity is important from a scientific point of view as it allows for a better understanding of one of the most spectacular geological phenomena and of the working principles that are at the basis of geophysics. Furthermore, there are numerous events that directly result from volcanic eruptions and that affect many populations. Therefore, improving the prediction methods of eruptive phenomena would be of great benefit. There are more than 1,500 potentially active volcanoes in the world, and roughly 10% of the world's population live in areas directly threatened by volcanoes. In all of these areas, volcanoes have a strong influence on many day-to-day activities. The eruption of Eyjafjallajökull in Iceland in April 2010 caused the cancellation of more than 100,000 European flights and, consequently, left more than 10 million passengers stranded. Each year, on a graver note, many regions in the world are destroyed or heavily damaged by lava or pyroclastic flows, in some cases, resulting in numbers of casualties that could have been avoided with the improvement of early warning systems.

Published in:

Robotics & Automation Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:19 ,  Issue: 1 )