German volcanologist Dr. Tom Pfeiffer, founder and general manager of VolcanoDiscovery, is passionate about volcanoes ever since he first saw an eruption on Mt. Etna. He has been guiding / organizing tours since 1997 and he founded VolcanoDiscovery back in 2004.
Tom obtained his PhD degree about the Santorini volcano and has worked at the volcano observatories of Hawaii and Vesuvius volcano. Besides being the main organizer of all our VolcanoAdventures itineraries he personally guides many of the European tours as well as the occasional volcano expeditions which are offered when an important eruption occurs.
During his travels, he found one his strongest passion in photography and the sharing of his knowledge and the living adventures outside the scientific community. His photographs and a large number of articles about volcanoes have been published in newspapers and magazines such as National Geographic, Scientific American (April 2003 issue about Etna), and others. Other activities include the assistance of documentary film productions about Santorini (“The myth of the lost city of Atlantis”, "Mystery Hunters", both on Discovery Channel) and Stromboli (“Quarks and co: Vulkane” recently aired by the German television channel WDR), and the ongoing series "Volcanic Odysseys" by Canadian filmmaker Michael Dalton.
Tom speaks English, Danish and Italian fluently (besides German, of course) and Greek and French with some Spanish quite well. He has spent a total of about 2 years in Italy (Rome, Sicily, Naples Volcano Observatory), a year on Santorini in Greece, as well as worked for 4 months at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, lived in Denmark for 7 years before moving to Athens in 2004.
Belgian geologist Dr. Ingrid Smet is the newest member of our team. Whilst studying the deposits of ancient Greek volcanoes, she became intrigued with the actual eruption mechanisms and eventually got a taste for the wonderful experience of observing an active volcano from (relatively) close.
She likes to share her passion about geology and love for nature with anyone interested to learn more - enthusiastic to translate her scientific knowledge to a broad audience. Besides supporting Tom with the organisation of our tours and the design of this website, she will be guiding some of our European tours and act as an extra geologist tour guide when we travel with larger groups.
Adi Susanto Rosadi ("Andi") from Yogyakarta, Indonesia, is the principal volcano expedition organizer for VolcanoDiscovery in Indonesia. He's been traveling around the country's many active volcanoes since he was a teenager - giving him an unsurpassed knowledge about them and close contacts with many volcanologists. He uses this experience to organize workshops for local guides to teach them about volcanoes. And during the large 2010 eruption of his home volcano Merapi, he participated in the dedicated emergency and rescue operations, often risking his own life. The Indonesian volcanoes are however usually more peaceful and Andi's favourite destination for hikes and photography.
French volcanologist Yashmin Chebli is convincing when he says that he has always been fascinated by the raw power of nature and the beauty of the universe. This passion led him to study volcanoes at university and brought him to Peru and Italy. The fact that he likes to share this passion and is skilled in organizing and communicating allowed him to start a parallel career as expedition organizer to volcanoes on Hawaii, Indonesia, Vanuatu and elsewhere. He has 15 years of experience of guiding groups and individuals around new adventurous destinations all over the world. His talent and enthusiasm in what he's doing is second to none! Yashmin is largely in charge of our French section and creating tours aimed towards French-speaking clients.
Dr. Marco Fulle is an Italian astronomer and volcano expert considered to be among the best volcano photographers world-wide. His specialty is Mt. Etna and with his photographs he is co-author of the popular educative website Stromboli Online. He and Tom lived many volcano adventures together, making them an excellent eruption-observing team and close friends. Marco guides some of our volcano tours in Italy, in particular to Etna and Stromboli. Mt. Etna is however his most beloved volcano which he considers as his "second home".
Italian Emanuela Carone lives in Catania at the foot of Mt Etna. Since her childhood, she has been in love with the volcano and knows it better than almost everyone else. She regularly climbs the mountain and closely follows its activity. For VolcanoDiscovery, she's our main correspondant on location, providing news, updates, photos and videos and she manages our excursions on location.
Ulla Lohmann is an internationally recognized adventurer, team organizer, documentary filmmaker and photojournalist with Australian university degrees in Natural Resource Management and journalism. Her latest work includes the documentaries Expedition Papua New Guinea (BBC NHU, Discovery Channel, NDR), Into the unknown (Darlow Smithson for Discovery Channel), Wild Spaces (National Geographic Television) and many others. Multilingual Ulla has lived, studied, worked and traveled extensively in many parts of the globe, but her specialist area is the South Pacific including the wild archipelago of Vaunatu. Her love for volcanoes and adventure travel, her passion for storytelling, her organisation skills and thorough knowledge of the South Pacific and its environments makes her the perfect guide for our tours to Vanuatu. You can find out more about Ulla and her activities on the website www.ullalohmann.de.