Ground Deformation at Piton de la Fournaise, a Review From 20 Years of GNSS Monitoring

  • Thomas Staudacher
  • Aline Peltier
Part of the Active Volcanoes of the World book series (AVOLCAN)


The record of ground deformation brings useful information to model volcano plumbing system and to preview the eruptive behavior of active volcanoes. Besides tiltmeters and extensometers, the GNSS seems to be one of the most attractive networks to detect and to track in real-time minute ground deformation. Here we report GNSS data recorded at Piton de la Fournaise and look in detail the pre-eruptive, but also the long term inter-eruptive behavior of this exceptionally active volcano. In particular baseline variations of the summit stations show a quite constant comportment before eruptions and permit reliable forecasting of eruptions. Model calculation using GNSS data are used to locate the magma reservoir and to retrace the origin and the shape of dikes that fed eruptions. Finally, for the first time the constancy of the inter-eruptive slow slipping of the east flank of Piton de la Fournaise has been attested by the GNSS network. In this chapter we present a review of 20 years of GNSS monitoring at Piton de la Fournaise and its contribution in the detection of eruption precursors and in the understanding of the volcano functioning.


Strain Gradient Ground Deformation Eastern Flank Southern Flank Summit Area 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We are grateful to P. Boissier for his permanent commitment to bring in GNSS data from the field, the constant improvement of the automatic data processing and the maintenance of the database. P. Kowalski, F. Lauret and P. Catherine are thanked for their effort to install and make the GNSS recorder running. Asta Miklius from the HVO is warmly thanked for their extremely helpful reviews and her effort to correct the English.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Observatoire Volcanologique du Piton de la FournaiseInstitut de Physique du Globe de Paris—Sorbonne Paris CitéLa Plaine des CafresFrance

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