3D Models of Tajogaite and lava flows

We currently have 5 3D drone models hosted on V3Geo, which are all available to view below, and we plan to continuously add more to provide educational resources and monitor the evolution of the eruption’s geomorphology. More information about the models, including data access, is available at the bottom of this page.

Cone, lava flows and lava deltas - June 2022

Southern Lava Delta - September 2022

Northern Lava Delta - September 2022

Underwater 1949 Lava Delta - September 2022

Main cone - September 2022

About the models

The models are the first interactive 3D models of the eruption that are available to view openly online, and are a result of a joint project between GeoTenerife and Drones4Geology, published on the 29th August 2022. They have been published openly on V3Geo as part of both of our commitments towards completely open, accessible science as well as effective communication of scientific outputs. Furthermore, the 1949 lava delta model represents the first underwater drone 3D model hosted on the website.

The aims of the models are to provide an educational resource to explore and interpret the features of this eruption, and also to be used by GeoTenerife and Drones4Geology in future projects for monitoring purposes on La Palma.

The V3Geo platform works on both PC and mobile although PC is preferred. The model can be navigated and investigated using the mouse to zoom in and out and using the mouse left and right clicks to pan around or track across the model respectively. There are also features to that allow the user to measure distances across the model and also exaggerate the vertical topography so features such as the lava channels can be appreciated in more detail.

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How were the models created?

The models were created from tens of thousands of photos collected over a two field campaigns with drones in June 2022 and September 2022, which were processed using a Structure-from-Motion (SfM) approach. This approach uses common features between overlapping high-resolution photos in conjunction with highly accurate GPS systems on the drone to work out the relative heights of different areas relative to one another. For more information on how these models are made using SfM techniques, you can watch this educational video here. We will continue to publish updated models via open access for all.

Data access

All the models are available to view interactively using the above viewer. The underlying data associated with the 3D models is available upon request, due to their large size. If you are interested in using this data, please email us at enquiries@geotenerife.com using “Drone Data Access” as the subject line.

About our drone collaborators

For the creation, we collaborated with Drones4Geology, a start-up created by two Spanish geologists Fernando and Joaquín, who provide commercial and academic geologic services by drone. They have worked across mainland Spain, the Canary Islands, and even further afield, and have a fleet of both aerial and novel underwater drones.

For some of the images used in this model, and much of the amazing drone photography and videography on our social media and in our LAVA BOMBS documentary content, we collaborated with Samuel Cáceres Leal, our friend and drone pilot from La Palma. Samu is an expert drone pilot who specialises in drone and camera photography and videographer, and you can view his images on his Instagram account. Before the eruption, Samu lived in the town of La Laguna was one of the thousands who lost their home during the eruption. You can read more about Samu’s story and how GeoTenerife have supported him through the #SAMULaPalma campaign here. We continue to work and collaborate with Samu and we are enormously grateful for all his ongoing hard work and commitment.