Adam Durant and Matt Watson, both of whom are alumni and adjunct faculty at Michigan Technological University, are doing postdoctoral work at the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom. They have been conducting some interesting research into volcanic plumes using meteorologic balloons.
See the video at left from the BBC. The research was funded by the National Science Foundation.
Up Up and Away Michigan Tech Story
Star Bulletin News Story: Balloons take to sky for volcanic gas study
Science Daily Studying Volcanoes With Balloons
Yahoo News Geologists study volcanoes with balloons