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Our Teams

The prime objective of VUELCO is to significantly improve our understanding of the processes behind volcanic unrest and the ability to forecast its outcome.
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Our Teams


VUELCO Team photo


University of Bristol

Team Leader: Dr Jo Gottsmann



Prof. Jon Blundy is a petrologist using high P-T experiments and melt inclusions to constrain sub-volcanic magmatic processes and conditions. He has worked for over 15 years on Mount St. Helens volcano, where his work has demonstrated the potential of combining petrology with geophysical techniques. Honours include the 2004 Bigsby Medal of the Geological Society. He currently holds an ERC Advanced grant.


Dr Richard Booker is manager of the experimental petrology lab in Bristol. He has 23 years of experience in the design and maintenance of high-pressure apparatus as well as an extensive publication record related to the influence of volatile species on volcanic and igneous processes.


Dr Ryerson Christie’s work, drawing on the insights of Critical Security Studies, focuses on the conceptualisation and implementation of security practices in the School of Sociology, Politics, and International Studies. His research involves the impact of security measures on marginalised populations and the ways in which measures are being implemented to nominally protect communities. He has extensive experience in conducting fieldwork in remote indigenous communities as well as in interviewing security stakeholders in government and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs).


Dr Alison Rust, also a Royal Society URF and lecturer, is a volcanologist whose interests include the dynamics of crystal-rich magmas, and the assessment of physical processes from the textures and volatile contents of suites of volcanic samples.


Dr Thomas Scott is Director and Research Associate of the Interface Analysis Centre (IAC). He graduated in Geology from Bristol with a PhD in Geochemistry, specializing in surface reactions and materials analysis. He has since cultivated a broad range of scientific interests in Materials and Earth sciences, which predominantly is surface science-based.


Dr Fiona Whittaker, senior lecturer, is a hydrogeochemist with over 20 years expertise in numerical modelling coupling fluid flow and water-rock interaction in complex natural systems.


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University of Leeds, United Kingdom

Team Leader: Jurgen Neuberg


Dr Dan Morgan is a lecturer at Leeds specialising in mineral textures, isotopic microanalysis and diffusional geochronology of minerals at short magmatic timescales. He is nternationally recognised as an expert in diffusion modelling. A diverse background gives a range of insights and methodologies to apply to petrological problems, and targets have included Santorini, Vesuvius, Campi Flegrei, the Fish Canyon Tuff and Stromboli. Current research is focusing on eruptions from the Taupo Volcanic Zone (NZ) and Long Valley Caldera (USA) collaborative projects led by Prof. Colin Wilson, Wellington), Chaos Crags (NERC standard grant with the University of Durham) with ongoing research on Vesuvius, Campi Flegrei and Piton de la Fournaise. Past highlights include resolving month-scale pre-eruptive magma mixing at Santorini and sub-kiloyear magma remobilisation signatures within the Fish Canyon Tuff.


Dr Tim Wright is a Royal Society University Research Fellow and Reader in Satellite Geodesy. His work has been at the forefront of developing the use of satellite radar interferometry (InSAR) for measuring tectonic and volcanic deformation. Major achievements include the first demonstration that interseismic strain can be measured using InSAR; the investigation of a series of major earthquakes using geodesy, seismology and geomorphology, and the discovery of a major rifting episode in Afar, Ethiopia. He has published 39 articles in major international journals, and his work is highly cited. He leads the NERC-funded Afar Rift Consortium. In 2006, he was awarded the William Smith Fund of the Geological Society, and a Philip Leverhulme Prize. In 2007 he was selected to a public lecture at the Geological Society - one of twelve to celebrate the society's bicentenary.


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Agencia Estatal Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas, Spain

Team Leader: Joan Marti



Helena Albert, Degree in Geology, post-graduate student at the IGN, is conducting a PhD Thesis on preeruptive processes at Teide volcano

Silvia Aragó, Degree in Geology, post-graduate student at the CSIC, is conducting a PhD Thesis on stress field modelling and rupture of magma chambers, hired by VUELCO

Stefania Bartolini, Degree in Physics, post-graduate student at the CSIC, is conducting a PhD Thesis on volcanic susceptibility and hazard assessment,

Dr María José Blanco, Doctor in Physics, head of the IGN department in the Canary Islands, is responsible for volcano monitoring of Teide Volcano (Tenerife), with more than 20 years of experience on volcano monitoring.

Xavier Bolós, Degree in Geology, post-graduate student at the CSIC, is conducting a PhD Thesis on structural controls of monogenetic volcanism, hired by VUELCO

Dr Alicia Felpeto: Doctor in Physics, researcher at the Spanish Geographic Institute (IGN), expert on hazard assessment and communication

Arnau Folch, Researcher at the Barcelona Supercomputing Center with more than 15 years of experience in modelling volcanic processes.

Dr Adelina Geyer, Doctor in Geology,  is a Post-doctoral researcher at the CSIC, specialist in modelling of volcanic processes and database management.

Carmen López, head of the volcanological observatory at the National Geographical Institute (IGN), with more than 20 years of experience in volcano monitoring and crisis management.

Dario Pedrazzi, Degree in Geology, post-graduate student at the CSIC, is conducting a PhD Thesis on pre-eruptive and eruptive processes of hydrovolcanism.

Dr Ignasi Queralt, Doctor in Geology, is a senior researcher at the CSIC with more than 30 years of experience in rock physics and magma rheology .

Dr Rosa Sobradelo, Doctor in Applied Mathematics, Post-doctoral Researcher at the CSIC with more than 15 years of experience in probabilistic methods, hired by VUELCO

Dr Marta Tarraga, Doctor in Physics, postdoctoral researcher at the CSIC, expert in volcano seismology

Dr Antonio Villaseñor, Doctor in Physics, is Tenured Researcher at the CSIC and has more than 20 years of experience in seismic tomography and stress field modelling.



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Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Itlay

Team Leader: Paolo Papale



Prof Lucia Civetta is Full Professor of Geophysics and a former Director of Osservatorio Vesuviano, Napoli. Since 2001 she holds an associate research position at INGV Napoli. She is member of the Scientific Committee of the INGV and of the "Great Risks Commission" of the Italian Civil Defense Agency. Her expertise and research interests include geochemistry, isotope geochemistry, volcanology, geochronology, and petrology. She has been the coordinator of the last volcanology project on Campi Flegrei "Unrest" funded by the Italian Civil Defense Agency.


Dr Antonella Longo is a researcher in volcano dynamics, expert in thermo-fluid dynamics and parallel computing applied to volcanic processes and volcanic hazard.


Dr Warner Marzocchi Research Director at the Seismology and Tectonophysics department in Rome. He is serving as co-leader of the World Organization of the Volcano Observatories (WOVO) and as leader of the IAVCEI Commission on Statistics in Volcanology (COSIV). His expertise and research interests include PVHA, eruption forecasting, statistical volcanology, PSHA, and volcano seismology; he has been the coordinator of the last project on national Seismic Hazard funded by the Italian Civil Defense Agency.


Dr Chiara Montagna is expert in fluid dynamics, computer programming, postprocessing/ visualization tools, applied to volcano dynamics.


Dr Roberto Moretti is Associate Professor at the Napoli II University and holds an associate research position at INGV Napoli. He served as Secretary for Geochemistry of European Geoscience Union (EGU). His expertise and research interests include geochemistry and volcanology, with a major focus on the thermochemistry of geological systems, silicate melt properties and magma degassing.


Prof Giovanni Orsi is Full Professor in Volcanology at INGV Napoli where he is responsible for the Functional Unit of Volcanology and Petrology. Member of various scientific societies and volcanological commissions, and a past member of the Civil Defense commission for upgrading emergency plans at Phlegraean Fields and Vesuvius (1996-2000).


Dr Laura Sandri is a researcher at INGV Bologna. Her main scientific interests include probabilistic models for eruption forecasting and volcanic hazard assessment.


Dmitri Rouwet is a researcher at INGV-Sezione di Bologna. He originally is a fluid geochemist studying active magmatic-hydrothermal systems and crater lakes in Mexico, Costa Rica and Italy. He's the current Leader of the IAVCEI Commission on Volcanic Lakes. His role within VUELCO is to expand the BET code for non-magmatic unrest and volcanic hazard assessment.


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Dipartimento della Protezione Civile, Italy

Team Leader: Dr Stefano Ciolli



Dr Stefano Ciolli, geologist, with 14 years experience. He has joined the DPC in 1998, where he works in the Volcanic Risk Service. He is involved in projects aimed at volcanic hazard evaluation and risk management and in educational activities at national level. He is charged of the National Functional Centre for volcanic risk, to support decision-making and the development of procedures for the national alert system. He took part, as the technical-scientific assessment officer, in all of the volcanic emergencies and exercises that occurred the last decade at Etna and Stromboli. He represents the DPC in matters related to air traffic management during volcanic eruptions.


Dr Chiara Cristiani, geologist, with 12 years experience in the geochemistry of volcanic rocks, field mapping and volcanic risk. She has experience in volcano monitoring systems, volcanic surveillance, volcanic hazard evaluations and mapping, real time evaluation of the impending risk and crisis scenarios to support of the civil protection decision-making. Her current role at the Volcanic Risk Service includes GIS mapping of volcanic areas. She is involved in projects aimed to volcanic risk at national level (Paroxysm, SPeeD, Magic) and European level (MIA VITA). She contributes to volcanic hazard assessment and participated in several volcanic emergency crises and crises exercises.


Giuseppe Amorosi Golisciani



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Ludwig-Maximilian University of Munich, Germany

Team Leader: Don Dingwell



Prof Cristina DeCamposis an applied petrologist with expertise in experimental petrology on magma mixing. Her work includes aspects of magma-mixing enhanced Unrest in the Campi Flegrei System.


Dr Werner Ertel-Ingrisch, a chemist, is in charge of the gas mixing lab and experiments.


Dr Kai-Uwe Hess is an applied mineralogist with over 15 years of experience in high-temperature and high-pressure experiments in the field of melt rheology, such as for instance viscosity measurements and advanced dilatometry. His further interests comprise neutron and x-ray tomography.


Dr Ulrich Kueppers, a geologist, is specialised in experimental and physical volcanology. He extensively worked on particle analysis and ash generation with respect to fragmentation efficiency.


Dr Yan Lavallee is a geologist/petrologist include with expertise in complex rheology, rock deformation and acoustic emission with application to volcanic unrest and eruption forecasting.


Dr Diego Perugini is a petrologist using the combination of experimental and numerical approaches to solve cases of igneous differentiation and eruption triggering involving magma mixing. He is a Humboldt Fellow at the LMU for the next 3 years.


Dr Bettina Scheu is an experimental geophysicist active in dissecting the mechanistic processes behind explosive volcanism and the unrest leading to it. She is working towards her Habilitation at the LMU for the next 4 years.


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Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, France

Team Leader: Michel Pichavant


Dr Marina Aletti has worked previously on magmatic volatiles, mainly halogens, with mostly an experimental approach. She is a post-doctoral research associate, working at Orléans on the determination of S solubilities in basaltic melts. She is supported by VUELCO.

Dr Joan Andujar originally comes from Barcelona and now has a permanent position at Orléans. He is working on volcanoes from The Canary islands and Santorini. He develops collaborations with Latin-American countries such as Ecuador about the use of experimental petrology to constrain magma storage conditions.   

Nolwenn Le Gall is conducting a PhD Thesis at Orléans on mechanisms of degassing of basaltic magmas, to improve our understanding of gas precursory signals. She is supported by VUELCO.

Dr Caroline Martel has worked extensively on the recent eruptions of Mt. Pelée in the Lesser Antilles. She is especially interested in syn-eruptive processes, including magma ascent, degassing and groundmass crystallisation, and in the dynamics of andesitic lava domes. She has been calibrating new techniques to determine magma ascent rates in volcanic conduits and has served as coordinator of a national-scale French research program on the explosivity of lava domes.

 Dr Bruno Scaillet has been using high P-T experiments to constrain the behaviour of volatile components in igneous and volcanic processes. He is interested in global issues such as the role of volcanic degassing on the chemistry of the atmosphere. Working in close collaboration with gas chemists, he is involved in several projects about volcanic degassing at Erebus, Ambrym, and Stromboli. He is also coordinating a large project about Plinian eruptions at Santorini.


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Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Mexico

Team Leader: Servando de la Cruz



Dr Alicia Martínez Bringas has a Ph.D. in geology and has specialized in volcanic seismology. She worked in the Seismology Department of the Institute of Engineering of UNAM from 1980 to 1995, except in the period 1991 to 1993, when she collaborated with the Earth Sciences Center of the University of Guadalajara. In 1996 she was appointed Researcher at the CENAPRED (National Center for Disaster Prevention, the technical body of the National System of Civil Protection, Mexican Ministry of the Interior), where she has been head of the Volcanic Risks area, a CENAPRED section responsible for the daily assessment of the volcano monitoring data since 2007.


Dr María Aurora Armienta Hernández is Senior Researcher at the Institute of Geophysics, National Autonomous University of Mexico, and head of the analytical Chemistry Laboratory of that Institute since 1985. She is Professor in the Earth Sciences Graduate Programme at UNAM, member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of Popocatépetl volcano, and was President of the Mexican Geochemistry Association (INAGEQ) from 1998 to 2000. She is recipient of the Juana Ramírez de Asbaje award for her scientific work at UNAM. Her research interests are hydrogeochemical processes related to volcanic activity, the use of geochemistry to monitor active volcanoes, and the contamination processes by metals and metalloids in groundwater, rivers and soils.


Dr Silvia Ramos Hernández has worked in volcano monitoring since 1990. She took courses on volcanology and volcano monitoring in OVISCORI (Costa Rica), INGEOMINAS (Colombia), CSIC (Spain), CENAPRED and UNAM (Mexico). She is currently researcher in charge of the Laboratory of Earth Sciences of the University of Sciences and Arts of Chiapas (UNICACH), and she coordinates the volcanic and seismic monitoring in the State of Chiapas, which includes the surveillance of El Chich´on and Tacan´a volcanoes.


M.C. Carlos A. Gutiérrez Martínez is a seismologist that has worked in CENAPRED (National Center for Disaster Prevention, the technical body of the National System of Civil Protection, Mexican Ministry of the Interior) since 1990. He was appointed Head of the Geological Risks Section in 2002, and Research Director of CENAPRED in 2006. He is member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of Popocat´apetl volcano and of the Technical Committee of the Preventive Fund for Disaster Prevention.


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UWI, Trinidad & Tobago

Team Leader: Richard Robertson



Ms Stacey Edwards, is the Education Officer at the Seismic Research Centre who has been in charge of the SRC Education and Outreach programme in the Eastern Caribbean for the past nine years. The SRC currently utilises a wide range of techniques (including social media) to communicate natural hazard information to a variety of audiences. Ms Edwards has over 15 years of professional experience in the field of public education and outreach.


Dr Erouscilla Joseph, is a volcanologist whose main interests include the investigation of geochemical and isotopic signatures of volcanic centres aimed at process-oriented understanding of magma generation and segregation. She was the principal researcher involved in the establishment of the SRC geothermal monitoring programme in the Eastern Caribbean.


Dr Joan Latchman, is a seismologist whose main interests include the application of b-value analysis to the forecasting of large magnitude earthquakes. She has long and extensive experience in the operation and management of volcano monitoring networks and the management of volcanic crises.


Ms Deborah Robertson, is a physicist who is currently engaged in PhD research at the SRC focused on the dynamics of geothermal systems in the Eastern Caribbean. Her research involves the use of COMSOL Multiphysics software to model the dynamics of surface expressions, shallow sub-surface mechanisms in geothermal heat pipes and large-scale dynamics of geothermal systems and their response to deep magmatic activity.


Dr Roberts Watts, is a volcanologist whose main interests include the emplacement mechanisms and petrology of crystal-rich intermediate lavas, understanding the controlling factors related to the stability/instability of andesitic lava domes and the geophysical monitoring of active volcanoes.


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Instituto Geofisico de Escuela Politecnica Nacional, Ecuador

Team Leader: Mario Ruiz



Dr Daniel Andrade is a structural volcanologist with a PhD from Clermont-Ferrand. His research interests are in the structural collapse of volcanic edifices. Currently he teaches Volcanology in the Geology Department of the Escuela Politecnica Nacional.


MSc. Patricia Mothes is the head of the Volcanology department at the IGEPN. Her interest area is in volcano deformation using GPS, tiltmeter and EDM techniques. She has substantial experience in geological research of Cotopaxi as demonstrated by a number of publications.


Monica Segovia is a seismologist and Head of the Ecuadorean Seismic Network. She holds a MSc in seismology from University of Nice. Her research interest include stress analysis of local tectonic seismic events.


Ing. MSc. Liliana Troncoso is a seismologist with a Master degree from the University of Nice. Her work focuses on crises communication protocols, early warnings procedures and information dissemination to communities. Her research interest include topics such as crustal stress distribution in Ecuador.


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