A Permanent, Real-Time Monitoring Network for the Volcanoes Mount Scenery and The Quill in the Caribbean Netherlands

Abstract: The stratovolcanoes of Mt. Scenery at Saba and The Quill at St. Eustatius in the Caribbean Netherlands, with a total population of about 5200 people, are part of the active volcanic arc of the Lesser Antilles but lacked a multiparameter volcano and earthquake monitoring system until the beginning of 2018. The permanent seismic network on the islands has been built up since 2006 and was expanded in 2018 with one permanent Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) sensor at each volcano and a temperature logger on Saba. We provide technical details of all equipment and the installation procedures, and we show the preliminary results of GNSS data processing. Deploying a remote, permanent network of different sensor types under tropical island conditions and sustaining access to real-time high-quality data to monitor the state of volcanoes is an underappreciated challenge. Despite the problems encountered, we operated the network with an overall availability of 84.5% in the first half of 2018 compared to 70.3% in the years before. The main unresolved problem affecting seismic data quality is related to sudden out-of-balance seismometer mass positions. We provide a complete overview of our monitoring network, the various challenges encountered, and the solutions applied, and we address future plans.

 Keywords: volcano monitoring; seismic network; Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) measurements; hot spring; The Quill volcano; Mount Scenery volcano; Caribbean Netherlands

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