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All times shown are Singapore Standard Time (GMT+8)

School Talks Room: WB3
Coral Reefs & Climate Change 16:00 – 16:30
Listening to Volcanoes 16:30 – 17:00
Space Weather 17:00 – 17:30
Space and Satellite Engineering 17:30 – 18:00

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Wed-04 Aug, 16:30 – 17:00, Room: WB3
School Talks (Save a seat)

“Listening to Volcanoes”


Earth Observatory of Singapore and Asian School of the Environment, Nanyang Technological University

Infrasounds are sounds below the human hearing threshold, the vibrations that you’d feel in your body in a movie theater when Godzilla wrecks The City, or the aliens fire the Death Ray. Infrasounds can travel in the atmosphere around Earth. For instance, the eruption of mount Kelut, Indonesia, was recorded Alaska, USA, more than 11000 kilometers away. And a giant meteor that exploded over Russia produced deep sounds recorded in Antarctica, twice. What can we learn from them? How can we get early warning about Natural Hazards from infrasound? And finally, why should we care in Singapore? In this presentation you will be listening to the sounds produced by Natural Hazards all around the world and get a sense on how we can get precious minutes of early warning that could save thousands of lives and billions of dollars in economic losses.


Benoit Taisne joined the Earth Observatory of Singapore in 2012 as a Principal Investigator within the volcano group and the Asian School of the Environment (ASE) at Nanyang Technological University, where he is now an Associate Professor, and Associate Chair for research and graduate matters. Benoit was educated in France where he received his BSc and MSc degrees in earth sciences at the University Pierre et Marie Curie and the École Normale Supérieure de Paris in 2004. He also holds an MSc in geophysics from the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris, where he obtained his PhD in 2008. Prior to moving to Singapore, he was a post-doctoral researcher at the Montserrat Volcano Observatory and at the seismological laboratory of the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris. Most recently, Benoit received the 2018 Nanyang Education Award (School) presented in the highest recognition of his teaching contributions to the University.

Broadly speaking, Benoit is primarily interested in magmatic processes from depth to the atmosphere, with the aim of understanding and integrating the external and internal mechanisms that control the dynamics of magmatic systems. His current research interests include monitoring volcanoes and real-time processing, analogue experiments, and infrasound, with a focus on the volcanoes of Southeast Asia. Within the ASE, Benoit established the magma transport and infrasound laboratories. He set up the very first infrasound-based monitoring network in Singapore and is collaborating with colleagues in and around Southeast Asia to develop infrasound capability in the region in order to further improve the potential to detect and characterise explosive volcanic eruptions.