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By April 5, 2006News
Enable-IT-Iceland-Volcano Volcanologists
Volcanologists Utilize Ethernet & PoE Extenders to Survey Volcanic Activity

When it comes to natural disasters, they are disruptive – educationally, economically, politically and technologically. One such natural disaster is the volcano, and volcanologists have been working to predict when mountains will erupt by watching around and in the volcano, typically with multiple sensors.

What do sensors do? They measure the volcanic gases, the amount and size of earthquakes, earth bulging around the volcano and how deep the magma is under the volcano… to name a few. Sensors will also measure the lava viscosity. The viscosity test will find out how quickly the lava is flowing and the temperature changes. The goal of this test is to save lives.

In the past, sensors had to be deployed by hand, which put volcanologists and scientists in harm’s way. However, thanks to solar-power technology and Ethernet Extension technology, the sensors can be deployed remotely, covering more volcano area. And, it does this with real-time information, allowing experts to better predict an impending disaster from the data they’re quickly getting from the sensors.

Our biggest customers since 2006 has been the U.S. Government – mainly the U.S. Geological Survey at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, which made use of the Ethernet Extenders with Remote-Controlled Pan, Tilt and Zoom Cameras to watch both the Mauna Loa and Kilauea volcanoes on the island.

Since 1983, the Kilauea caldera system has been active, which means volcanologists had to study the volcano by air and ground, dealing with the dangerous sulfur dioxide gas plumes that have emanated from the fissure that broke up along the Holuhraun lava field.

These gases could be dangerous to those populations who live downwind from the eruption, and have even been detected in lands as far as Norway. Scientists are not sure what the eruption is going to do even now. Perhaps it will lead to flooding or produce an ash eruption that leads to a halt in air travel. Or, worse yet, it could lead to a cooling effect on the world’s climate.

There are a number of hazards to volcano sensors such as:

• Landslides
• Droughts
• Slope instability
• Debris flows
• Floods

And, each of these things can affect transportation, sanitation, community development, water quality and health.

With Ethernet and PoE extenders, they help these remote sensors to continue working.

• Seismic Remote Sensing – Watches for and measures earth movements including JP camera video, GPS and laser tool sets.
• Atmospheric Remote Sensing – Watches for and measures for volcanic cloud detection and tracking the level of SO2 in the air.
• Thermal Remote Sensing – Watches for and measures the vents and area for heat.

It’s imperative to get real-time information from the PoE and Ethernet enabled sensors to ensure people’s lives are not in immediate danger.

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