My training in geotechnical sciences and volcanology has made me aware of the importance of the hazards associated with natural phenomena; a further understanding of magma fragmentation processes will aid in developing the resilience of communities to volcanic hazards.
I graduated as a Geological Engineer from the Universidad de Los Andes, ULA (Venezuela), and after working in industry for some time I pursued a Masters degree in the study of fine soil materials (clays) within the framework of an ERASMUS MUNDUS program. I graduated in 2014 with a double degree from the Université de Poitiers (France) and the Technical University of Crete (Greece).
During my Ph.D. at the University of Perugia, Italy (Marie Curie Project, ITN-VERTIGO), I focused on the study of magma fragmentation and ash generation in explosive volcanic eruptions. My main area of interest was analyzing Grain Size Distributions (GSDs) of volcanic natural products and experimentally generated pyroclasts, and evaluating the feasibility of using fractal analysis for clarifying dynamics of ash generation. The results of my investigation allowed for a more detailed view of the processes responsible for the generation of these GSDs during magma ascent. The most exciting element of this study is understanding if analogous experiments in the laboratory are able to reproduce what happens in nature, enabling us to shed light on elusive volcanic processes, such as ash-generation. If successful, results will be key in the design of ash-related hazard models. This interrelation continues to guide my research interests, as I explore the links between the efficiency of fragmentation and eruptive energy, and volcanic risks and associated hazards.