Gregg J.S. Bluth, Professor

Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences

Michigan Technological University (MTU), Houghton, MI  49931



Professional Preparation

Pennsylvania State University (Ph.D. Geochemistry, 1990)

Pennsylvania State University (M.S. Geochemistry, 1987)

University of California, Berkeley (A.B. Geology, 1984)



2006 - present, Professor, Dept. of Geological Eng. and Sciences, MTU

2004 - 2005, Director, Remote Sensing Institute, MTU

1998 - 2006, Associate Professor, MTU

1998, NASA Summer Faculty Research Fellow, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC)

1994-1997, Research Professor, MTU

1993-1994, Assistant Research Scientist, Geology Dept., University of Maryland

1990-1993, Research Scientist, Universities Space Research Association, GSFC


Teaching Experience

        Current:  Environmental Geology, Fundamentals of Remote Sensing, Natural Hazard Mitigation, Cultural Communication of Hazards

        Previous:  Geology of Utah's National Parks, Geomorphology, Global Change and Earth Systems, Global Climate, Volcanic Cloud Analysis


Key Publications (totals:  46 peer-reviewed publications, >100 abstracts)

Bluth, G.J.S., J.M Shannon, I.M. Watson, A.J. Prata and V.J. Realmuto (2007) Development of an ultra-violet camera for volcanic SO2 imaging.  J. Volc. Geotherm. Res., 161, 47-56.

Guffanti, M., J.W. Ewert, G.M. Gallina, G.J.S. Bluth, and G.L. Swanson (2005) The volcanic-ash hazard to aviation during the 2003-2004 eruption of Anatahan Volcano, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.  J. Volc. Geotherm. Res., 146, 241-255.

Bluth, G.J.S. and W.I. Rose (2004) Observations of eruptive activity at Santiaguito Volcano, Guatemala.  J. Volc. Geotherm. Res., 136, 297-302.

Rodriguez, L.A., I.M. Watson, W.I. Rose, Y.K. Branan, G.J.S. Bluth, G. Chigna, O. Matias, D. Escobar, S.A. Carn, and T.P. Fischer (2004) SO2 emissions to the atmosphere from active volcanoes in Guatemala and El Salvador, 1999-2002.  J. Volc. Geotherm. Res., 138, 325-344.

Wallace, P., S. Carn, W. Rose, T. Gerlach and G. Bluth (2003) Integrating petrologic and remote sensing perspectives on magmatic volatiles and volcanic degassing.  Eos, 84, 441-456.

Carn, S.A. and G.J.S. Bluth (2003) Prodigious sulfur dioxide emissions from Nyamuragira volcano, D.R. Congo.  Geophys. Res. Lett., 30, 2211-2216.

Rose, W.I., G.J.S. Bluth and G.G.J. Ernst (2000) Integrating retrievals of volcanic cloud characteristics from satellite remote sensors - a summary.  Phil. Trans. Royal Soc., Series A, 358, 1585-1606.

Bluth, G.J.S., W.I. Rose, I.E. Sprod, and A.J. Krueger (1997) Stratospheric loading from explosive volcanic eruptions.  J. Geol., 105, 671-683.


Synergistic Activities

-Development of a nationally-recognized research program at MTU in remote sensing, volcanic hazards, and international graduate education; this program has grown to a thriving research group of 20-25 graduate students and 2 post-docs.

-Director, MTU Remote Sensing Institute (RSI; 2004 – 2005).  RSI is comprised of 30+ faculty in eight departments, focusing on research and education in remote sensing.  Developed a joint RSI/MTU Graduate School Fellowship program to attract top Ph.D. students.

-Development of a Master's International (Peace Corps) program in Natural Hazards in Latin America (2003-present, with W. Rose).  This has attracted top quality, diverse, dedicated, and intellectually stimulating group of students from all over the country to our campus, and is opening new research and outreach opportunities in Latin America.

-Team member, NASA's TOMS Science Team (2001-present); Earth Observing System Volcanology team (1995-1999). The TOMS Science Team is the 2006 winner of William T. Pecora award, presented annually by NASA and Dept. of Interior for outstanding contributions toward understanding the Earth by means of remote sensing.

-Co-PI and co-developer of an introductory field course in Utah (1999-present, with J. Huntoon), bringing fundamental geosciences to a highly diverse, nationwide set of participants.  PI on several supporting grants for scholarship support to underrepresented minorities, pre-service education majors, and secondary school teachers. 


Selected External Funding

Totals:  over $5M as Principal Investigator (>$8M including Co-PI projects), on 40+ external research grants from NSF, NASA, Department of Education, and the Michigan Space Grant Consortium.

-Project Director of a 5-year, $2.3M NSF project to integrate research and education in Pacific Latin America (2005-present).  This project features the development and application of remote sensing tools to study and mitigate natural hazards and manage natural resources, and builds international undergraduate and graduate programs in geoengineering and natural hazard mitigation in collaboration with geoscience agencies in our partner countries Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Ecuador.

-Development of an ultraviolet digital camera for quantifying the SO2 content of volcanic plumes (2004-present).  The camera system produces high (1-2 m) resolution SO2 maps of passively degassed plumes under typical monitoring conditions, from 3 to 20+ km in distance.  This camera represents a major advance in volcanic gas monitoring, allowing direct observation and analysis of gas plumes from vent emission to downwind dispersion.  The camera allows the study of SO2 (and possibly other species such as H2O) plume dynamics, mixing, and removal processes from a synoptic perspective at high spatial resolution.  The camera also has the capability to make continuous evaluations of SO2 flux, allowing direct comparisons with other high-resolution datasets (e.g., seismic, acoustic, video, thermal) to study eruption precursors and near-surface conduit activity that leads to changes among these parameters.


Graduate Students

Graduated: primary or co-advisor for 7 Ph.D. and 13 M.S. students; fully supported 13 MTU graduate students through their degrees from external research grants.

Current:  3 Ph.D, 2 M.S.