The University of Sheffield
Department of Geography

Dr Andrew McGonigle

Reader in Volcano Remote Sensing

Andrew McGonigle

Room number: F4
Telephone (internal): 27961
Telephone (UK): 0114 222 7961
Telephone (International): +44 114 222 7961

Andrew has an MSci degree in Theoretical Physics (first class) from the University of St. Andrews and a DPhil in Laser Physics from the University of Oxford. He then held a NERC Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship in the Department of Geography at the University of Cambridge before moving to Sheffield in 2005 as a RCUK Academic Fellow. He has subsequently been promoted to Senior Research Fellow, and then Reader. He serves on the editorial board of the journal Remote Sensing and as an associate scientist of the Italian Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia.

Research Interests

His research is focused on the development and application of remote sensing techniques for environmental, particularly volcanic, remote sensing, for which he was named a Laureate in the 2008 Rolex Awards for Enterprise competition. This work has been covered in the press through outlets such as Le Monde, La Repubblica, National Geographic, Wired, Esquire and Vogue. To learn more please take a look at a talk Andrew gave at TEDxMunich in 2011.

For futher details on publications see ResearcherID

Current research

My current work falls within the following three themes:

Volcano Remote Sensing
Development and application of sensors for monitoring volcanic plumes, in order to improve our understanding of how volcanoes work.
Volcano remote sensing research

Volcano Atmosphere Interactions
Better understanding the radiative and chemical impacts of volcanic emissions to the atmosphere.
Volcano-Atmosphere interactions research

Other Environmental Sensing
Development and deployment of spectroscopic tools for studying other environmental phenomena, such as anthropogenic pollution.
Other Environmental Sensing research

Field targets include the southern Italian volcanoes, Masaya volcano, Nicaragua and the volcanoes of Papua New Guinea.


I teach a range of modules at graduate and undergraduate level focused on understanding the Earth system, volcanism and how we use remote sensing to understand both of these. In teaching I try and make as many links as possible to daily life, and to other germane subjects in geography and beyond to help understanding and really emphasise the unity of knowledge amidst the sometimes confusing modular system. I also try and include the most up to date and exciting developments in these fields especially in the context of my own research. I use lecturing and small group teaching styles. I also teach on research skills and try and really make the link between the usefulness of this ability at University but also beyond in every possible career which a Geography graduate may go onto pursue!

In addition to teaching at Sheffield I have been a speaker at the Education Without Borders conference in Dubai and at TEDxMunich.

Andrew teaches on a range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses including:

GEO101 Physical Systems at the Global Scale
GEO211 Applied Remote Sensing
GEO347 Geo-Environmental Project
GEO352 Geological Hazards
GEO368 Planetary Geoscience

GEO6030 Research Design in Physical Geography
GEO6606 Spatial Techniques for Environmental Analysis

All staff also engage in personal supervision and tutoring of individual students at all three undergraduate levels in the following modules:
GEO163 (Information & Communication Skills for Geographers)
GEO263 or GEO264 (Research Design in Human or Physical Geography)
GEO356 (Geographical Research Project)

Key Publications

  • Vance, A., McGonigle, A.J.S., Aiuppa, A., Stith, J.L., Turnbull, K., and von Glasow, R. (2010). Ozone depletion in tropospheric volcanic plumes, Geophysical Research Letters, 37, L22802.
  • Kantzas, E.P., McGonigle, A.J.S., Tamburello, G., Aiuppa, A. and Bryant, R.G. (2010). Protocols for UV camera volcanic SO2 measurements. Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, 194(1-3), 55-60.
  • McGonigle, A.J.S., Aiuppa, A., Ripepe, M., Kantzas, E.P. and Tamburello, G. (2009). Spectroscopic capture of 1 Hz volcanic SO2 fluxes and integration with volcano geophysical data. Geophysical Research Letters, 36, L21309.
  • McGonigle, A.J.S., Aiuppa, A., Giudice, G., Tamburello, G., Gurrieri, S. and Hodson, A.J. (2008). Unmanned aerial vehicle measurements of volcanic carbon dioxide fluxes. Geophysical Research Letters, 35, L06303.
  • McGonigle, A.J.S. (2007). Measurement of volcanic SO2 fluxes with differential optical absorption spectroscopy. Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, 162(3-4), 111-122.

Full publication list