The Pulsation number: Entrainment into volcanic jets with time-varying source parameters
Left: Using a novel focused-beam scanning Doppler radar to measure unsteady eruption source parameters in-situ at Sabancaya volcano, Peru.
Right: Experiment on pulsating buoyant plumes in a density stratified saltwater tank.
Eruptions where the mass and speed of erupting material exiting a vent with an evolving geometry (eruption source parameters) all change relatively quickly, for example on the order of seconds to minutes, during the eruption present a major challenge to accurate modeling of the rate at which ambient air is entrained into the eruption column and, in turn the maximum rise height of the erupted mixtures. I am currently working on Doppler radar measurements of pulsating eruptions at Sabancaya volcano, Peru combined with pulsating plume experiments in the laboratory to test a new source Pulsation number to capture the effects of these time-varying (unsteady) eruption source parameters on explosive eruption dynamics. Check back in Spring, 2022 for a full summary of this research project!