Two Years of Real-Time Operations of the Spaceborne European Volcano Observation (EVOSS)
Ferrucci, Fabrizio1; Tait, Steve1; Clarisse, Lieven2; Hirn, Barbara3; Theys, Nicolas4; Tampellini, Marialucia5; Valks, Pieter6; Laneve, Giovanni7; Brenot, Hugues4; Di Bartola, Concettina3; Smith, Kay8; Vimercati, Marco5; Vye, Charlotte8; Louchlin, Sue8; Van Der A, Ronald9

EVOSS (European Volcano Observatory Space Services), developed in the European Commission's GMES between 2010-2013, is a monitoring service exclusively based on space-borne EO data, for the timely, multi-parameter, multi-payload monitoring of major volcanic activity at the global scale. The system is designed to deal in real time with eruptive activity. Data from 8 different satellite payloads (SEVIRI, MODIS, GOME-2, IASI, OMI, Cosmo-SkyMED, JAMI and, until April 8th 2012, SCHIAMACHY onboard Envisat) acquired at 5 different downlink stations, are split and automatically processed at 6 locations in Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany), an architecture which allowed managing knowledge and know-how without concern for intellectual property engaged in any part of the data crunching process. The results, arranged in four separate data streams (thermal, volcanic SO2, volcanic ash and ground deformation), are conveyed to a unique central system called VVO, the "Virtual Volcano Observatory".
The system uninterruptedly operates 24H/24-7D/7 since September 2011 on all volcanoes in Europe, Africa, the Lesser Antilles, and the oceans around them. Until February 2013, EVOSS has detected and monitored all eruptions that occurred in the region monitored: 19 eruptions at 5 subaerial volcanoes (Etna, Nabro, Nyamulagira, Nyiragongo, Stromboli) in real-time automated mode, and 2 submarine eruptions, one at Jebel-el-Zubair (Red Sea) and one at El Hierro (Canary archipelago), in supervised off-line mode.
EVOSS services are delivered to a group of 14 qualified end users, bearing the direct or indirect responsibility of monitoring and managing volcano emergencies, and in all cases of advising governments in Ethiopia, Djibouti, Comoros, Congo, Tanzania, Uganda, Montserrat, Iceland and the overseas volcanoes of France; the Volcanic Ash Advisory Centers of London and Toulouse have a relevant role in the user group. In particular, the four EVOSS services serve as the unique full-time replacement of the Goma Volcano Observatory, D.R.Congo, unable to operate since mid-2011 because of major civil and military unrest.
The EVOSS operations stretch beyond the 2013 time limits of EC funding and the current two-continent areal limits, through the porting of the system over new geostationary and polar platforms (e.g. MTSAT, the post-MODIS NPP and the Eumetsat EPS, the forthcoming GMES Sentinels, etc.), and the addition of any newly erupting volcano to the growing list of volcanoes observed permanently and not upon detection trigger.