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Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre Southampton

Research project: Evolution of faulting and magmatism during volcanic rifting in the Ethiopian Rift - Dormant

Currently Active: 

Faults, volcanoes and lava flows define the surface morphology of volcanically active rifts. In subaerial settings, such as the East African rift, the formation of these features during earthquakes, magmatic intrusion and volcanic eruption poses a major hazard to populations and infrastructure.

Despite the importance of faulting and volcanism within rifts, we have relatively poor constraints on how these processes interact to accommodate extension and in so doing sculpt the surface of the Earth on which people live.

Digital elevation model for fault and cone field near Boset Volcano
Figure 1


  • GIS analysis of a 1m resolution DEM (Digital Elevation Model) of the Boset magmatic segment of the Ethiopian Rift

Key Objectives

  • Investigate how the morphology of volcanic rifts evolves
  • Use the example of the Northern Main Ethiopian Rift (NMER) as it has an excellent surface exposure of aligned volcanoes, volcanic cones and lava flows, dissected by young fracture and fissure networks
3D picture of Boset volcano from Google Earth
Figure 2

Key Contacts

Dr Derek Keir

Professor Jonathan Bull

Dr Tom Gernon

PhDs and Other Opportunities


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