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3-D Resistivity Structure of La Soufrière Volcano (Guadeloupe): New Insights into the Hydrothermal System and Associated Hazards

Abstract : The 3-D electrical resistivity model of the dome of La Soufrière of Guadeloupe volcano was obtained by inverting more than 23000 electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) and mise-a-la-masse data points. Data acquisition involved 2-D and 3-D protocols, including several pairs of injection electrodes located on opposite sides of the volcano. For the mise-a-la-masse measurements, the contact with a conductive mass was achieved by immersing one of the current electrodes in the Tarissan acid pond (~25 Siemens/m) located in the volcano's summit. The 3-D inversion was performed using a deterministic smoothness-constrained least-squares algorithm with unstructured grid modeling to accurately account for topography. Resistivity contrasts of more than 4 orders of magnitude are observed. A thick and high-angle conductive structure is located in the volcano's southern flank. It extends from the Tarissan Crater's acid pond on the summit to a hot spring region located close to the dome’s southern base. This suggests that a large hydrothermal reservoir is located below the southern base of the dome, and connected to the acid pond of the summit's main crater. Therefore, the steep southern flanks of the volcano could be resting on a low-strength, high-angle discontinuity saturated with circulating and possibly pressurized hydrothermal fluids. This could favor partial edifice collapse and lateral directed explosions as shown recurrently in the volcano's history. The resistivity model also reveals smaller hydrothermal reservoirs in the south-east and northern flanks that are linked to the main historical eruptive fractures and to ancient collapse structures such as the Cratère Amic structure. We discuss the main resistivity structures in relation with the geometry of observed faults, historical eruptive fractures, the dynamics of the near surface hydrothermal system manifestations on the dome and the potential implications for future hazards scenarios .
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Contributor : Isabelle Dubigeon <>
Submitted on : Friday, December 11, 2015 - 2:25:52 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, March 28, 2020 - 2:05:10 AM


  • HAL Id : insu-01242095, version 1


Marina Rosas-Carbajal, Florence Nicollin, Jean-Christophe Komorowski, Dominique Gibert, Sébastien Deroussi. 3-D Resistivity Structure of La Soufrière Volcano (Guadeloupe): New Insights into the Hydrothermal System and Associated Hazards. AGU Fall Meeting 2015, American Geophysical Union, Dec 2015, San Francisco, United States. pp.V12B-06. ⟨insu-01242095⟩



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