GEO3BCN-CSIC i la UB formen una unitat associada per a estudiar zones volcànicament actives

El Consell Superior d'Investigacions Científiques, a través de Geociències Barcelona (GEO3BCN-CSIC), reconeix com a unitat associada d'R+D+i al grup de recerca 'Petrologia i Geoquímica Volcànica' de la Facultat de Ciències de la Terra de la Universit... Read more

28-05-2024 News

Geociències Barcelona s'incorpora a la xarxa H2CAT com a nova entitat socia

Geociències Barcelona (GEO3BCN-CSIC) s'adhereix a la xarxa catalana d'innovació i escalabilitat del coneixement en tecnologies diferencials en l'àmbit de l'hidrogen renovable (H2CAT) com a entitat sòcia. Amb aquesta nova incorporació, la xarxa suma l... Read more

24-05-2024 News

Un projecte estudia amb dades satel·litàries les esllavissades la Noguera Pallaresa

Geociències Barcelona (GEO3BCN-CSIC) treballa en un nou projecte per cartografiar les esllavissades a la conca de la Noguera Pallaresa a partir de dades de satèl·lit i models digitals del terreny. El treball proporcionarà informació clau per prevenir... Read more

16-05-2024 News

Mercè Cisneros, rebut l’ajut ICHN a la Dona Naturalista 2024

L’ajut Dona Naturalista 2024 ha recaigut en Mercè Cisneros, paleoclimatòloga de Geocienciès Barcelona (GEO3BCN-CSIC), pel seu treball ‘Perles de caverna de l’Avenc Montserrat Ubach: monitoratge de la seva formació i de les condicions hidroclimàtiques... Read more

26-04-2024 News

GEO3BCN-CSIC propone seis trabajos de formación en la convocatorio JAE INTRO 2024

Geociencias Barcelona (GEO3BCN-CSIC) ofrece seis propuestas de trabajos de investigación en la convocatoria 2024 de las becas JAE Intro de introducción a la investigación que ofrece el Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC). El plazo ... Read more

23-04-2024 News

New research explores the influence of the Adria microplate on geological changes in the western-central Mediterranean

A new article, published by Geosciences Barcelona (GEO3BCN-CSIC), explore how the Adria microplate has influenced the geological changes in the Tyrrhenian Basin, the Apennines in Italy, and the Dinarides and Carpathians-Balkanides in Southeastern Eur... Read more

10-04-2024 News

GEO3BCN at EGU 2024

The 2024 edition of the European Geosciences Union (EGU) General Assembly is just around the corner, scheduled to take place both on-site in Vienna and virtually from 14 to 21 April. Among presenters at this year's EGU General Assembly are researche... Read more

25-03-2024 News

El CSIC presenta la Conexión Geociencias para un planeta sostenible

El Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC) acogió el pasado 14 de marzo el kick off de la nueva conexión Geociencias para un planeta sostenible. Esta nueva propuesta, coordinada por Blas Valero Garcés, del Instituto Pirenaico de Ecolog... Read more

18-03-2024 News

The paleomagnetism laboratory is involved in obtaining the first complete archaeomagnetic data from Central Asia

A study presents the first complete archaeomagnetic data of the magnetic field vector for Central Asia, a vast region that has been largely unexplored from an archaeomagnetic perspective for a long time. Bet Beamud, head of the Paleomagnetism laborat... Read more

11-03-2024 News

Ramon Carbonell, nuevo vicepresidente de la Comisión del CSIC para la Coordinación y Racionalización de las ICTS

El investigador de Geociencias Barcelona (GEO3BCN-CSIC), Ramon Carbonell, ha sido nombrado nuevo vicepresidente de la Comisión para la coordinación y Racionalización de Infraestructuras Científicas y Técnicas Singulares (ICTS) y participación en Infr... Read more

06-03-2024 News

The geometry of growth strata as evidence for the evolution of the Nahreh anticline, the interior Fars region

Tavazo, Z., Gholami, E., Motamedi, H., soleimany, B., & Vergés, J. (2024). The geometry of growth strata as evidence for the evolution of the Nahreh anticline, the interior Fars region. Khu-Gnf, 10(1), 33–52. https://doi.org/10.22034/KJES.2024.10.1.106791

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Occurrence of sand boils landside of a river dike during flooding: A geophysical perspective

Ghorbani, A., Revil, A., Bonelli, S., Barde-Cabusson, S., Girolami, L., Nicoleau, F., & Vaudelet, P. (2024). Occurrence of sand boils landside of a river dike during flooding: A geophysical perspective. Engineering Geology, 329, 107403. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enggeo.2024.107403

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Topographic Controls on Pyroclastic Density Current Hazard at Aluto Volcano (Ethiopia) Identified Using a Novel Zero-Censored Gaussian Process Emulator

Tierz, P., Spiller, E. T., Clarke, B. A., Dessalegn, F., Bekele, Y., Lewi, E., et al. (2024). Topographic controls on pyroclastic density current hazard at Aluto volcano (Ethiopia) identified using a novel zero-censored Gaussian Process emulator. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 129, e2023JB028645. https://doi.org/10.1029/2023JB028645

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Unveiling the Distinct Structure of the Upper Mantle Beneath the Canary and Madeira Hotspots, as Depicted by the 660, 410, and X Discontinuities

Bonatto, L., Schlaphorst, D., Silveira, G., Mata, J., Civiero, C., Piromallo, C., & Schimmel, M. (2024). Unveiling the distinct structure of the upper mantle beneath the Canary and Madeira hotspots, as depicted by the 660, 410, and X discontinuities. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 129, e2023JB028195. https://doi.org/10.1029/2023JB028195

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The problems of the Anthropocene in the Geologic Time Scale, and beyond

Soriano, C. (2024). The problems of the Anthropocene in the Geologic Time Scale, and beyond. Earth-Science Reviews, 253, 104796. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2024.104796

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Salt Distribution in the South Pyrenean Central Salient: Insights From Gravity Anomalies

Santolaria, P., Ayala, C., Soto, R., Clariana, P., Rubio, F. M., Martín-León, J., Pueyo, E. L., & Muñoz, J. A. (2024). Salt Distribution in the South Pyrenean Central Salient: Insights From Gravity Anomalies. Tectonics, 43(5), e2024TC008274. https://doi.org/10.1029/2024TC008274

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A comparative study of the high-pressure structural stability of zirconolite materials for nuclear waste immobilisation

Errandonea, D., Turnbull, R., Sánchez-Martín, J., Oliva, R., Muñoz, A., Radescu, S., Mujica, A., Blackburn, L., Hyatt, N. C., Popescu, C., & Ibáñez-Insa, J. (2024). A comparative study of the high-pressure structural stability of zirconolite materials for nuclear waste immobilisation. Results in Physics, 61, 107704. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rinp.2024.107704

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Endorsing Trusheim’s classic model of salt-diapir growth by the interpretation and restoration of seismic lines in the southern region of the Great-Tunb Island, Persian Gulf

Haji Khani, M., Najafi, M., Seyedali, S. M., 2024. Endorsing Trusheim’s classic model of salt-diapir growth by the interpretation and restoration of seismic lines in the southern region of the Great-Tunb Island, Persian Gulf, Geopersia, in press. https://doi.org/10.22059/GEOPE.2024.370003.648740

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Insights into fluid migration during the 2021 La Palma eruption using seismic noise interferometry

Carvalho, J., Silveira, G., Mendes, V. B., Schimmel, M., & Antón, R. (2024). Insights into fluid migration during the 2021 La Palma eruption using seismic noise interferometry. Frontiers in Earth Science, 12. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/feart.2024.1298472

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THE ARABIA – EURASIA COLLISION ZONE IN IRAN: TECTONOSTRATIGRAPHIC AND STRUCTURAL SYNTHESIS

Madanipour, S., Najafi, M., Nozaem, R., Vergés, J., Yassaghi, A., Heydari, I., Khodaparast, S., Soudmand, Z., & Aghajari, L. (2024). THE ARABIA – EURASIA COLLISION ZONE IN IRAN: TECTONOSTRATIGRAPHIC AND STRUCTURAL SYNTHESIS. Journal of Petroleum Geology, 47(2), 123–171. https://doi.org/10.1111/jpg.12854

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1590 years ago, in 431 CE, the Maya civilisation was laid waste as the Ilopango volcano erupted, killing every living thing within 40 km around the volcano, according to a new study carried out by an international team of scientists and with the participation of Dario Pedrazzi, researcher at Geosciences Barcelona–CSIC (GEO3BCN). The article has been published in the journal PNAS.

It was known, as previous studies had shown, that there had been a major volcanic eruption in the region, but the date was still unknown. This new research lead by Victoria Smith, Associate Professor from University of Oxford and head Tephrochronology group, has established the precise date and nature of this eruption.

To do so, the team of scientists analysed an ice core recovered from Greenland and also carried out radiocarbon measurements from a charred tree found in the TBJ ash deposits. Hence, they were able to date accurately the massive eruption to within just a couple of years, in 431 CE.

The research team used a 3-D tephra dispersal model and they could estimate that the eruption plume rose to 45 km and that the Ilopango’s ash was sent more than 7.000 km, as far away as Greenland.

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“This work follows previous studies that were published in 2019 and in which we described, thanks to an extensive analysis of the ash deposits in El Salvador, the main physical parameters of this violent eruption that reached its climax with a series of pyroclastic flows linked a caldera collapse”, said Dario Pedrazzi, researcher at GEO3BCN and co-author of the study. “A great part of this research has been possible thanks to all the data acquired during 3 field campaigns carried out in El Salvador during which we conducted a detailed mapping of the ash deposits present in an area of 200.000 km2”, said Pedrazzi.

Around 55 km3 of magma erupted from Illopango. “More than 2 million km2 of Central America was covered with at least ½ cm of ash and it would have been dark over this region for at least a week”, said Victoria Smith.

50 times bigger than Mount Saint Helens eruption

According to Smith, “Ilopango Eruption was more than 50 times bigger than that of Mount Saint Helens”, occurred in 1980. “The pyroclastic flows from the eruption of Ilopango were 10 times the volume of those from Vesuvius, which erupted in 79 CE, preserving the Roman city of Pompeii in ash.”, she added.

The explosion took place during the Maya Early Classic Period, which extended from 300 to 600 CE, as the civilisation saw growth across Central America. But, according to Victoria Smith, ‘The explosion would have killed every living thing within 40 km and there would have been no inhabitants for many years or decades in the vicinity.’ The enormous eruption did not, however, have a marked impact on the Maya elsewhere.

Ilopango was thought to have been responsible for the anomalously cold decade in the Northern Hemisphere around 540 CE. But, the work shows this date is at odds with archaeological evidence (pottery production), which actually suggests a date near the start of the Early Classic period.

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The Ilopango Caldera is located less than 10 km from San Salvador City, the capital of El Salvador, and it's a part of Volcanic Arc of El Salvador which includes a total of 21 active volcanoes, being one of the most active segments of the Central America Volcanic Arc.

This research has been possible with the support of a research project funded by CONACYT and lead by Gerardo Aguirre-Díaz, from Centro de Geociencias, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM). This project is focused in the study of the Ilopango caldera and its aimed to constrain the danger of volcanic supereruptions in Central America.

Researchers from Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV), Centro de Geociencias, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) and the University of Groningen also participated in the study. They worked alongside with researchers from Queen's University Belfast, Université Clermont Auvergne (CNRS), Università degli studi di Padova, Desert Research Institute, Instituto Potosino de Investigación Científica y Tecnológica, University of Bern and the Ministerio de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales from El Salvador.

Original article

Smith, V., et al (2020)., The magnitude and impact of the 431 CE Tierra Blanca Joven eruption of Ilopango, El Salvador. PNAS. doi: https://www.pnas.org/cgi/doi/10.1073/pnas.2003008117

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