1B.2 Ash plume monitoring at the Eyjafjallajökull eruption 2010

Monday, 24 January 2011: 1:45 PM
607 (Washington State Convention Center)
Sigrún Karlsdóttir, Icelandic Meteorological Office, Reykjavík, Iceland; and H. Pétursson, G. N. Petersen, H. Björnsson, H. Þorsteinsson, T. F. Hervarsson, and K. Hermannsdóttir
Manuscript (298.5 kB)

Volcanic eruptions in Iceland occur on average every four to five years. The threat of volcanic ash clouds to aviation has been known for several decades, however volcanic eruptions in Iceland have not, until now, had a great effect on the international air traffic. This is due to the fact the the eruptions in the period 1980 to 2004 were relatively short, and the wind direction was favorable for the air traffic in Europe and trans Atlantic flights, i.e. the winds were mostly blowing towards the north and northeast. Observations of the height of the ash cloud and ash content vs. water vapor is the most important input parameters into ash dispersion models. A lessons learned from the Eyjafjallajökull eruption in 2010 is that improved ash plume monitoring in Iceland will be benefitial to ash dispersion models. In the autumn 2010 several improvements will take place, for instance a X-band dual polarization mobile radar will be stationed in Iceland, LIDAR measurements will be installed as well as other improvements.

In the paper, an overview of the monitoring will be given and the lessons learned will be discussed.

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