Do you want to learn about volcanoes? The following are ten fascinating facts about volcanoes. Some of these facts will be familiar to you, while others may surprise you. Volcanoes, in any case, are incredible natural wonders that need our respect.
1. Volcanoes are classified into three types: Although all volcanoes are formed by hot magma reaching the Earth’s surface and erupting, there are several types. Shield volcanoes have low viscosity lava flows can flow for dozens of kilometers, making them very wide and with gently sloping flanks.
Stratovolcanoes are made up of several types of lava, as well as ash and rock eruptions, and can reach tremendous heights. Cinder cone volcanoes are typically smaller and formed by short-lived eruptions that only reach a height of 400 meters.
2. Escaping Magma Causes Volcanoes to Erupt: The Earth’s mantle is around 30 kilometers beneath your feet. It’s a zone of extremely heated rock that stretches all the way down to the Earth’s core. This region is so hot that molten rock can press out and form magma chambers, which are gigantic bubbles of liquid rock. Because the lava is lighter than the surrounding rock, it rises to the surface, revealing faults and weaknesses in the Earth’s crust.
It erupts out of the ground as lava, ash, volcanic gases, and rock until it eventually reaches the surface. When it’s underground, it’s called magma, and when it bursts onto the surface, it’s called lava.
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3. Volcanoes can be active, dormant, or extinct: Volcanoes can be active, dormant, or extinct. An active volcano is one that has erupted at some point in the past (in the last few thousand years). A dormant volcano is one that has previously erupted and has the ability to erupt again but has not done so recently. Extinct volcanoes are those that scientists believe will never erupt again. More information about the world’s active volcanoes may be found here.
4. Volcanoes have a rapid growth rate: Some volcanoes take thousands of years to build, while others grow quickly. On February 20, 1943, the cinder cone volcano Paricutin appeared in a Mexican cornfield. It grew to be 5 floors tall in a week and more than 336 meters tall by the end of the year. It reached a height of 424 meters when it was cut down in 1952. That’s pretty speedy by geology standards.
5. There are now 20 volcanoes erupting: As you read this, there are probably roughly 20 active volcanoes erupting somewhere on the planet. Some are experiencing new activity, while others have been going on for a while. Last year, 50-70 volcanoes erupted, with 160 actives in the previous decade. In the last 10,000 years, geologists believe approximately 1,300 volcanoes have erupted.
Three-quarters of all eruptions occur beneath the sea, and the majority are currently exploding with no geologists aware of it. Volcanoes form near mid-ocean ridges when the ocean’s plates are expanding apart, and this is one of the reasons. When undersea volcanoes are included, the total number of volcanoes that have erupted in the previous 10,000 years is estimated to be around 6,000.
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6. Volcanoes Pose a Risk: But you already knew that. Krakatoa, which erupted in 1883 and released a tsunami that killed 36,000 people, is one of the most dangerous volcanoes. In AD 79, Vesuvius erupted, burying the towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum and killing 16,000 people.
In 1902, Mount Pelee on Martinique’s island devastated a settlement of 30,000 inhabitants. The lethal pyroclastic flows that blast down the edge of a volcano after an eruption are the most destructive element of volcanoes. These contain ash, rock, and water traveling at speeds of hundreds of kilometers per hour and temperatures above 1,000 degrees Celsius.
7. Supervolcanoes are Extremely Risky: The Volcano Explosivity Index, which assesses the volume of material expelled, is used by geologists to assess volcano eruptions. Mount St. Helens, a “minor” eruption, rated a 5 out of 8, expelling a cubic kilometer of material. Toba, the greatest known explosion, is considered to have occurred 73,000 years ago.
It ejected over 1,000 cubic kilometers of material, forming a 100-kilometer-long and 30-kilometer-wide crater. The explosion ushered in an ice period that lasted for millennia. On the VEI, Toba received an 8.
8. The Solar System’s Tallest Volcano isn’t on Earth: That’s correct, the Solar System’s tallest volcano isn’t on Earth at all, but on Mars. On Mars, Olympus Mons is a 550-kilometer-wide shield volcano that reaches a height of 27 kilometers. Because there is no plate tectonics on Mars, scientists believe Olympus Mons was able to grow so huge. A single hotspot might continue to inflate for billions of years, causing the volcano to grow larger and larger.
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9. The world’s tallest and largest volcanoes are located next to one other: With a height of 4,207 meters, Hawaii’s Mauna Kea is the world’s tallest volcano. With an elevation of only 4,169 meters, it is only slightly larger than the world’s largest volcano, Mauna Loa. Both are submarine shield volcanoes that rise from the seafloor. Mauna Kea’s true height would be 10,203 meters if measured from the ocean’s edge to its top (which is higher than Mount Everest).
10. A Volcano is the farthest point from the Earth’s center: You might believe that Mount Everest’s summit is the farthest point from the Earth’s center, however, this is not the case. Instead, it’s Ecuador’s Chimborazo volcano. This is because the Earth is flattened out in space as it spins. The equator is further away from the Earth’s center than the poles. Chimborazo is also fairly close to the equator.