The 2011 Arne Richter Awards for Outstanding Young Scientists is awarded to Olivier Galland for his remarkable contribution to the understanding of volcanic and magma emplacement processes.
Olivier Galland focuses his research on the emplacement of volcanic products in regions of the Earth where a convergent state of stress would slow down or even prevent fluid circulation. This has important implications in regions with a high level of volcanic geohazard, for example on the western coast of South America. He has unravelled some key processes, such as the coupling between magma circulation and compressive faults development. Using novel laboratory analogue experiments, and coupling them to finite element modelling, he analysed how surface deformation measurements could be used to inverse the shape of a magmatic body that rises underground. Using these techniques, and based on detailed field observations, he demonstrated the importance of fluid pressure as an important control parameter on the depth of magmatic sill emplacement. More recently, he developed innovative experiments to characterize the formation of piercement magmatic structures, showing their potential effect on the release of large amounts of greenhouse gas into the atmosphere.