News reporter Tina Chau of Guam News Watch television interviewed SMU vulcanologist James Quick about the danger of nearby Anatahan volcano to neighboring Guam. Quick leads a two-year, $250,000 volcano monitoring project of the U.S. Geological Survey and Southern Methodist University in the Northern Mariana Islands.
The project, which includes Anatahan volcano, will use infrasound — in addition to more conventional seismic monitoring — to “listen” for signs that a volcano is about to blow. The plan is to beef up monitoring of lava and ash hazards in the Marianas, a U.S. commonwealth near Guam. The island of Guam soon will be the primary base for forward deployment of U.S. military forces in the Western Pacific.
The USGS-SMU team recently installed equipment on the islands that was originally designed to detect nuclear explosions and enforce the world’s nuclear test-ban treaty, an area of expertise for <a href=”https://blog.smu.edu/research/2006/06/brian_stump.html#more” target=”blank”>SMU scientists</a>. The Marianas’ project is an effort to pioneer the use of the technology to monitor active volcanoes.