SACS-2 (Support to Aviation Control Service-2)
SACS-2 aims to develop algorithms for the retrieval of volcanic ash and SO2 from polar-orbiting satellite instruments, with the main objective to improve the existing SACS system for the delivery of near-real time data products and e-mail notifications in the case of a volcanic event.
SACS-2 is a continuation of Support to Aviation Control Service (SACS) hosted by the Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy SMASH (Study on an end-to-end system for volcanic ash plume monitoring and prediction)
SMASH is funded by the ESA General Studies Programme and has main objectives to develop and validate new algorithms that implement polar orbiting satellite remote sensing data for volcanic source term characterisation, and for the quantitative retrieval of volcanic ash and SO2 plumes.
Moreover, the project will define an optimal end-to–end system for volcanic ash monitoring and prediction for Europe, based on the existing remote sensing infrastructure.
Past projects related to VAST
SAVAA (Support to Aviation for Volcanic Ash Avoidance)SAVAA is the precursor project of VAST and ran until 2012. The project focused on improving the services to the aviation community by providing accurate and timely satellite-based information to Volcanic Ash Advisory Centres (VAACs).
Lack of standards for volcanic ash and gas data products led to a variety of protocols and ad hoc procedures being implemented in the aviation community. The project focused on providing validated quantitative satellite information in a format most suitable to the VAACs (based on user feedback trough a very similar user survey).
The project also focused on improving the atmospheric dispersion models to predict the path of the volcanic clouds.