first_imgAn open house on May 12 at Vancouver’s U.S. Geological Survey center and the season opening of the observatory near the crater of Mount St. Helens on May 16 will be part of Volcano Preparedness Month in Washington.The open house will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on May 12 at Cascades Volcano Observatory, 1300 S.E. Cardinal Court, in Cascade Park.Visitors can talk with scientists, tour labs and test their knowledge of volcano hazard zones and volcano safety, said Carolyn Driedger, USGS hydrologist and outreach coordinator.Displays and demonstrations will illustrate the work that happens daily at the observatory, including identification of earthquakes and interpretation of data arriving from monitoring stations on Cascade Range volcanoes.Scientists will demonstrate monitoring instruments, including thermal imaging, volcanic gas collection and a robotic arm that processes sediment samples.Computer simulations will show the ash path of a future eruption and forecast how far debris flows will travel downstream. Visitors can bring a favorite mystery rock to be identified by a geologist.last_img read more