Permalink to this page
E-Mail: mike.richards @ open.ac.uk
Mike is currently the lead investigator on the eVolcán project putting ubiquitous computing technologies to work at active volcanoes. More than 500 million people live close enough to one or more active volcanoes that they are threatened not just by catastrophic eruptions, but also by the constant emission of low levels of toxic gases into their environment. Solid-state sensors, mobile communications networks and cheap, low-power computers allow continuous monitoring of even the most remote sites, providing timely warnings and accurate scientific data about volcanic activity. The project is especially challenging, not only because it requires hardware capable of surviving heat, cold, toxic (and often corrosive) gases, rain, snow, ash, mud, the occasional large rock falling from the sky and animals; but also human factors including government bureaucracy and vandalism.