1Department of Geography, University of Cambridge, Downing Place, Cambridge, CB2 3EN, UK
2New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, Socorro, USA
Received: 03 Sep 2013 – Discussion started: 25 Oct 2013
Abstract. In December 2012, the Mount Erebus Volcano Observatory installed a thermal infrared camera system to monitor the volcano's active lava lake. The new system is designed to be autonomous, and capable of capturing images of the lava lake continuously throughout the year. This represents a significant improvement over previous systems which required the frequent attention of observatory researchers and could therefore only be operated during a few weeks of the annual field campaigns. The extreme environmental conditions at the summit of Erebus pose significant challenges for continuous monitoring equipment, and a custom-made system was the only viable solution. Here we describe the hardware and software of the new system in detail and report on a publicly available online repository where data will be archived. Aspects of the technical solutions we had to find in order to overcome the challenges of automating this equipment may be relevant in other environmental science domains where remote instrument operation is involved.
Revised: 20 Jan 2014 – Accepted: 29 Jan 2014 – Published: 05 Feb 2014
Peters, N., Oppenheimer, C., and Kyle, P.: Autonomous thermal camera system for monitoring the active lava lake at Erebus volcano, Antarctica, Geosci. Instrum. Method. Data Syst., 3, 13-20, doi:10.5194/gi-3-13-2014, 2014.