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Content archived on 2024-05-29

Experimental quantification of physico-chemical processes in Campi Flegrei tuff


The study of volcanoes is one the key themes within the EU natural hazards research agenda. This study will aim to improve the existing forecast models by investigating fundamental deformation processes in volcanic tuffs from the Campi Flegrei area. This area is characterised by peculiar ground deformation episodes whose origin is not well understood.

Field monitoring of such events has revealed that both geochemical and geophysical parameters change during the deformation episodes. I propose to study the fundamental mechanisms that could generate these phenomena by carrying out a unique set of cross-disciplinary laboratory experiments on the tuffs. The tests will be carried out in the presence of water and under a stress state that simulates the in-situ conditions in the crust.

I will quantify the extent of water assisted deformation processes and the associated time dependent strength reduction in the tuffs. I will also monitor various geochemical and geophysical parameters during each test. The laboratory data will be compared with the field data in order to gain a better understanding of the origin of the deformation events.

The experimentally defined values will also provide input data for numerical models of the subsurface system at Campi Flegrei. The results of this novel experimental programme will advance our knowledge of the physical mechanisms that may be responsible for the time-dependent uplift-subsidence sequences in this volcanically active area.

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