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Natural hazards affect everyone, everywhere. Join us as we hear about the inner workings of active volcanoes in Mexico, as well as the threats posed by space weather to technology and life in our modern society.
The ticking eruptive clock at active volcanoes
Dr Chiara Petrone (Research Leader - Petrology at the NHM)
Minerals crystallising from a magma are a probe in the interior of a volcano, recording physical and chemical conditions of the magma and also providing a snapshot in time of pre-eruptive processes. Unravelling the message can be difficult, but it will provide precious information on the time and mechanism triggering the eruption. I will take you through a journey in the hearth of Popocatépetl volcano, one of the most active in Mexico to discover the hidden history of its eruptive behaviour and how we can use this information to better understand the activity of this dangerous giant.
Today’s space weather forecast: sunny, with a small chance of global devastation?
Dr Jonathan Eastwood ( Lecturer in space physics)
Colossal eruptions of material and light from the Sun’s atmosphere can travel through space, interact with the Earth’s magnetic field, and generate amazing auroral displays. However, these beautiful phenomena have a darker side, and ‘space weather’ affects human life and technology both in space and on the ground. Space weather is now widely recognised as a significant risk to our modern technological society, and we will examine what the worst-case scenario might be, and what steps are being taken to protect ourselves from space weather more generally