Fifty-nine active volcanoes in Ethiopia are dormant most of their lives but will erupt again in the future. These volcanoes form part of the East African Rift, the best natural geodynamic laboratory to study processes of continental breakup (rifting) that over time will lead to the formation of a new ocean. Two volcanoes at the centre of this project, Corbetti and Bora-Baricha-Tullu Moye, both located in densely populated areas of central Ethiopia, are currently being investigated by our team for their eruptive history (frequency, size and style of past eruptions). Both volcanoes have frequently erupted in the past, generating widespread dispersal of volcanic ash. They are also actively targeted for geothermal energy development and as such represent a major socio-economic resource. It is therefore timely to better understand the underlying magmatic systems and study their longer-term evolution, using a geochemical and geochronological approach.


  • Karen Fontijn, Department of Geosciences Environment and Society, Laboratoire G-Time, ULB
  • Tamsin Mather, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Oxford