The use of UAV remote sensing for observing lava dome emplacement and areas of potential lahar hazards: An example from the 2017–2019 eruption crisis at Mount Agung in Bali

Ruli Andaru, Jiann Yeou Rau, Devy Kamil Syahbana, Ardy Setya Prayoga, Heruningtyas Desi Purnamasari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Mount Agung (the highest volcano in Bali, Indonesia) began to erupt on November 21, 2017, after having been dormant for 53 years. More than 100,000 people were evacuated within the hazard zone between September 2017 (when the highest volcanic alert was issued) and early 2018. The eruptions continued until June 2019, accompanied by at least 110 explosions. During the eruptive crisis, the observation of the lava dome's emplacement was essential for mitigating the potential hazard. Details of the lava dome growth, including the volumetric changes and effusion rates, provide valuable information about potential eruption scenarios and lahar depositions. In this paper, the essential role of multi-temporal unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) images in the monitoring of Mt. Agung's lava dome, and in determining the areas of potential lahar hazards during the crisis between 2017 and 2019 is described. A fixed-wing UAV was launched outside the hazard zone to photograph the lava dome on five occasions. Image enhancement, machine learning, and photogrammetry were combined to improve image quality, remove point clouds outliers, and generate digital terrain models (DTMs) and orthoimages. The analysis of the obtained DTMs and orthoimages resulted in qualitative and quantitative data highlighting the changes inside the crater and on the surrounding slopes. These results reveal that, from November 25 to December 16, 2017, the lava dome grew vertically by 126 m and reached a volume of 26.86 ± 0.64 × 106 m3. In addition, its surface experienced a maximal uplift of approximately 52 m until July 2019 with the emergence of a new dome with a volume estimated at 9.52 ± 0.086 × 106 m3. The difference between the DTMs of 2017 and 2019 reveals the total volume of erupted material (886,100 ± 8000 m3) that was deposited on the surrounding slopes. According to the lahar inundation simulation, the deposited material may cause dangerous lahars in 21 drainages, which extend in the north (N), north-east (N-E), south (S), south-east (S-E), and south-west (S-W) sectors of the volcano. This paper presents the use of UAV remote sensing for the production of high-spatial resolution DTMs, which can be used to both observe the emplacement of a lava dome, and to identify areas with potential lahar risk during a volcano crisis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107255
JournalJournal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research
Volume415
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Jul

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology

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