Pan-American Studies Institute (PASI): Magma-Tectonics in Latin America; Managua, Nicaragua, 2013.

  • Lafemina, Peter Christopher (PI)

Project: Research project

Project Details


A Pan-American Advanced Studies Institute (PASI) will be held in Managua, Nicaragua, in 2013. The organizing committee consists of the Principal Investigator, Dr. Peter La Femina (Pennsylvania State University), Dr. Angelica Muñoz (Instituto Nicaragüense de Estudios Territoriales, Nicaragua), Dr. John Stix (McGill University, Canada) and Dr. Freysteinn Sigmundsson (University of Iceland). The PASI will address fundamental issues related to magma-tectonic interactions, in order to improve understanding of volcano-magmatic systems and thus help mitigate associated hazards, risks, and vulnerabilities. In particular, the institute will address four key scientific aspects, which will allow the scientific community to improve the science in significant ways: (1) Magma-tectonic interactions; (2) Deep vs. shallow magma plumbing systems; (3) Eruption trigger mechanisms; and (4) New approaches, methods, and technologies for volcano monitoring.

Arc volcanism is an ongoing threat along the backbone of the Americas from the Alaskan Aleutians to near the southern tip of South America. The hazards highlight the significant risk to people living close by, to civil aviation in terms of volcanic ash, and also regionally in the case of particularly large eruptions. Volcanic systems are in close-proximity to subduction zone fault systems. As seen in the recent past, subduction zones can generate large magnitude earthquakes that could potentially trigger eruptions. In order to examine these issues in a meaningful and novel manner, this PASI will have sessions on three distinct yet clearly related and overlapping themes: (1) geophysical processes, (2) geochemical processes, and (3) integrated studies of magma-tectonic interactions. Using these three approaches in an interdisciplinary fashion will provide new and important insights into subsurface magma behavior before eruptions, inter-relationships and feedbacks between magmatic and tectonic processes, and the events that initiate periods of volcano restlessness, including eruptions.

This PASI will bring together scientists from across the Americas for training in the latest scientific advances and technologies in volcano monitoring and modeling of magmatic and tectonic processes. It will give advanced graduate students and post-doctoral researchers from the U.S. the opportunity to initiate collaborations with their Latin American counterparts, and will enable Latin American colleagues to promote a professional network of scientists from across the region. Furthermore, it will utilize data from the NSF MARGINS program and the COCONet initiative to investigate magmatic and tectonic systems across the Americas.

Effective start/end date10/1/129/30/15


  • National Science Foundation: $100,000.00


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