Long-term variations of fumarole temperatures on Vulcano Island (Italy)

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Iole Serena Diliberto


Fumarole temperatures are the ultimate results of many processes that are encountered by deep fluids during their passage to the surface. Here, the time variations of high-temperature fumaroles acquired by continuous monitoring are presented, to show the effects of the forces that act on the system. Data acquired by continuous monitoring of fumaroles and the time relationships with the different parameters related to the activity of the volcanic system are discussed. From 1998 to 2010, the temperature and compositional changes of fumarolic gases were monitored at the same time as variations in the number of volcano-seismic events, which indicate frequent variations of energy release (heat and mass flow, and seismic strain release). Geochemical modeling applied to the volcanic system of Vulcano Island suggests that the overall expansion of magmatic gas through the fractured system is an almost iso-enthalpic process at depth, which shifts to an adiabatic process at shallow depth, where the rock permeability increases. Thus, the time variations of the fumarole temperatures reflect various physical variations of the system that can either occur at depth or close to the surface. The temperature monitoring performed in the fumarolic area of La Fossa Cone showed short-term effects related to rain events, and negligible effects related to other external agents (ambient temperature and atmospheric pressure variations). At the same time, the long-term monitoring highlighted some mean-term and long-term variations. These last are the main characters observed in the time-series, and they both appear to be related to endogenous forces that perturb the equilibrium of this complex geochemical system.

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How to Cite
Diliberto, I. S. (2011) “Long-term variations of fumarole temperatures on Vulcano Island (Italy)”, Annals of Geophysics, 54(2). doi: 10.4401/ag-5183.