SANTIAGUITO, Guatemala, January 13, 2012 --
 Volcanologists observe Santiaguito volcano (bottom left of image) from about 10,000 feet elevation atop the Santa Maria mountain in Guatemala in early January 2012.

While most Techies were ringing in the New Year with family and friends, a few volcano scientists were shivering around a fire atop a mountain in Guatemala.

Geophysics professor Dr. Jeff Johnson, master's student Jake Anderson and IRIS-PASSCAL technician Lloyd Carothers (a Tech graduate) were among more than a dozen people on an international expedition to study the Santiaguito volcano.

On what has become an bi-annual expedition, the team deployed a wide variety of sensors to monitor the hourly eruptions of the volcano that overlooks Quetzaltenango in northwest Guatemala.

Activity this year at Santiaguito was particularly exciting because of the presence of an active 30-meter tall block lava flow that was steadily advancing.

Along the way, some of the team members kept a blog about their experiences and the science. To read about the expedition, click here.

-- NMT--