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Not If, but when

Seismic monitoring

Scientists are constantly monitoring the Auckland Volcanic Field.

Seismic monitoring is the most effective way of keeping watch on Auckland’s volcanoes. When magma rises towards the Earth’s surface the ground usually vibrates. To find out what is happening deep below, sensitive motion detectors (seismometers) track the arrival time and strength of each wave of energy moving through the ground. Volcanic earthquakes and tremors make different seismic patterns thannon-volcanicearthquakes.

Herne Bay RSAM and SSAM Borehole

RSAM (Real-time Seismic-Amplitude Measurement) and SSAM (Seismic Spectral-Amplitude Measurement) are techniques that permit volcano seismologists to evaluate the nature of seismicity at a volcano. They are able to recognize subtle shifts in frequency related to changing dynamics of magma or gas movement within the volcano, or the amount and style of volcanic tremor. They also show other noise like windy weather or traffic.

The Auckland Volcanic Field is monitored by GeoNet.The Auckland Council is one of partners that supports monitoring. The Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences (GNS) analyses the data in real time and informs the Council of any worrying developments.

View live feeds on GeoNet