Scientists are set to learn more about volcanoes in the southern Lesser Antilles through recent installation of a temporary network of seismic instruments in St. Vincent and the Grenadines which will bolster earthquake monitoring capacity and facilitate closer study of the structure of volcanoes.

Seismic recording stations have been installed in Union Island, Canouan, Mustique, Bequia and on mainland St. Vincent.

The installation was part of the Volatiles in the Lesser Antilles (VoiLA) project which seeks to provide a better understanding of earthquakes and volcanic activity in the southern Lesser Antilles.

As part of this project instruments will also be deployed in St. Lucia and Grenada.  Additional studies on the development of volcanism in this region are planned for May 2017.

On completion of this project scientists hope to have a clearer picture of the spread of earthquakes over the southern section of the Lesser Antilles, the location, potential size of these events and the mechanisms that generate them.

The additional instruments deployed will complement the existing seismic network and facilitate an expanded earthquake catalogue (a list of earthquakes recorded in a particular region) by allowing smaller earthquakes to be recorded that would otherwise go undetected.

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