Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Remote Sensing (RS) are nowadays common tools used by geoscientists to understand and to study volcanic hazards. GIS and RS can be used in areas where data is either scarce or none-existent but where volcanic activity presents a significant danger to communities living around them. GIS data sets such as Global Digital Elevation Models and RS imagery have been made freely available. These data sets allow geoscientists to model, map and simulate volcanic processes in areas that were not possible before; producing valuable products in a faster time frame, and at less cost which facilitate a faster response to the communities in need. This study shows work using freely available data in combination with hazard modeling on Tungurahua Volcano, Ecuador and Ilamatepec Volcano and Tecapa Volcano, El Salvaldor to enhance community mitigation and hazard mapping.
The Tungurahua Volcano was selected as an example of how GIS can be implemented to help evaluate volcanic hazards producing a stream network map to delineated and map where future flows such as pyroclastic flows and lahars may occur. The map was compared with the preliminary pyroclastic map of the October 16th, 2006 eruption.
The Ilamatepec and Tecapa Volcanoes were selected as examples of how RS can be used to help with pyroclastic flows and lahars mapping after an eruption, Ilamatepec Volcano, and to support fieldwork by measuring and mapping the inundation zone cause by water lake increased which caused damage at a public school and recreational area, Tecapa Volcano.