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Geoscientific Instrumentation, Methods and Data Systems An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 4, issue 2
Geosci. Instrum. Method. Data Syst., 4, 215-226, 2015
https://doi.org/10.5194/gi-4-215-2015
© Author(s) 2015. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Geosci. Instrum. Method. Data Syst., 4, 215-226, 2015
https://doi.org/10.5194/gi-4-215-2015
© Author(s) 2015. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 24 Nov 2015

Research article | 24 Nov 2015

Development of the very long-range cosmic-ray muon radiographic imaging technique to explore the internal structure of an erupting volcano, Shinmoe-dake, Japan

T. Kusagaya and H. K. M. Tanaka T. Kusagaya and H. K. M. Tanaka
  • Earthquake Research Institute, The University of Tokyo, 1-1-1 Yayoi, Bunkyo, Tokyo 113-0032, Japan

Abstract. Muography offers us a tool to observe hazardous erupting volcanoes remotely. However, practical muographic observations of volcanoes from a distance are difficult; therefore, various observations have been performed in the vicinity (< 1.5 km) of volcano peaks to suppress background noise and enhance images. In this study, we created a muographic image directly beneath the caldera floor of the erupting Shinmoe-dake volcano in Japan by locating our muography telescope 5 km from the peak. The Shinmoe-dake volcano began to erupt on 19 January 2011 and, in less than 1 month, the ejected lava almost completely filled the caldera and completely changed the topography of the caldera floor. The resultant image shows a low-density region underneath the western part of the newly created caldera floor, which indicates the existence of a void there. After the volcano became less active in February 2011, infrequent eruptions might have left a void beneath the caldera floor, which may trigger a collapse in the future. We anticipate that our novel muography will be a practical tool for monitoring and predicting eruption sequences in the near future.

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