Yellowstone’s Volcano Bigger Than Thought
by Becky Oskin
Yellowstone’s underground volcanic plumbing is bigger and better connected than scientists thought, researchers reported here today (April 17) at the Seismological Society of America’s annual meeting.
"We are getting a much better understanding of the volcanic system of Yellowstone,” said Jamie Farrell, a seismology graduate student at the University of Utah. “The magma reservoir is at least 50 percent larger than previously imaged.”
Knowing the volume of molten magma beneath Yellowstone is important for estimating the size of future eruptions, Farrell told Our Amazing Planet…
(via: Live Science)
illustration via: National Park Service

Yellowstone’s Volcano Bigger Than Thought

by Becky Oskin

Yellowstone’s underground volcanic plumbing is bigger and better connected than scientists thought, researchers reported here today (April 17) at the Seismological Society of America’s annual meeting.

"We are getting a much better understanding of the volcanic system of Yellowstone,” said Jamie Farrell, a seismology graduate student at the University of Utah. “The magma reservoir is at least 50 percent larger than previously imaged.”

Knowing the volume of molten magma beneath Yellowstone is important for estimating the size of future eruptions, Farrell told Our Amazing Planet…

(via: Live Science)

illustration via: National Park Service

How Tall Are Eruptions on Io and Venus?

by Erik Klemetti

Earth does not hold the monopoly on active volcanism in the solar system. In fact, Earth isn’t even the most volcanically active body in the solar system. Although we have abundant volcanism, to the tune of hundreds to thousands of active and potentially active volcanoes, if you look at the amount of land surface covered by the deposits of recent volcanism, Earth’s volcanism is confined to fairly small areas.

Even so, volcanism likely played a vital role in getting life started on the Earth — and maybe it is the driving force in other parts of the solar system. The manifestation of volcanism on other planets is different than on Earth as well — some places produce giant eruption plumes (like on Io) and some might produce very small plumes (like at the newly-identified potentially active volcanoes on Venus), so why are they so different?

Look at a place like Jupiter’s moon, Io. This plucky little moon is covered almost wall-to-wall with geologically-recent volcanic deposits (see above) thanks to the tidal forces exerted on it by Jupiter’s gravity. When New Horizons passed by Io in 2007, the spacecraft (headed to Pluto-Charon) captured a sequence of frames that showed the giant volcanic plume from TvashtarPatera (along with some fainter plumes from Masubi and Zal; see below)…

(read more: Wired Science)

images: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute

NASA’s Earth Observatory Captures Image of Remote Island
There is perhaps no better place to get away from it all than Norway’s Bouvet Island. Located in the South Atlantic Ocean between Africa, South America, and Antarctica, this uninhabited, 49-sq-km (19-sq-mi) shield volcano is one of the most remote islands in the world. The nearest large land mass is the Princess Astrid Coast of Queen Maud Land, Antarctica—1,700 km (1,100 mi) to the south. The nearest inhabited place is Tristan da Cunha, a remote island 2,260 km (1,400 mi) to the northwest that is home to a few hundred people.
On May 26, 2013, the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8 acquired this natural-color image of Bouvet Island. Thick ice covers more than 90 percent of the island year round. Christensen glacier drains the north side; Posadowsky glacier drains the south side. A ring of volcanic black sand beaches encircles most of the island. (Download the large image to see them). In many areas, the thick layer of ice stops abruptly at the island’s edge, forming steep ice cliffs that plunge to the beaches and oceans below…
(read more: NASA Earth Observatory)
NASA Earth Observatory image by Jesse Allen and Robert Simmon

NASA’s Earth Observatory Captures Image of Remote Island

There is perhaps no better place to get away from it all than Norway’s Bouvet Island. Located in the South Atlantic Ocean between Africa, South America, and Antarctica, this uninhabited, 49-sq-km (19-sq-mi) shield volcano is one of the most remote islands in the world. The nearest large land mass is the Princess Astrid Coast of Queen Maud Land, Antarctica—1,700 km (1,100 mi) to the south. The nearest inhabited place is Tristan da Cunha, a remote island 2,260 km (1,400 mi) to the northwest that is home to a few hundred people.

On May 26, 2013, the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8 acquired this natural-color image of Bouvet Island. Thick ice covers more than 90 percent of the island year round. Christensen glacier drains the north side; Posadowsky glacier drains the south side. A ring of volcanic black sand beaches encircles most of the island. (Download the large image to see them). In many areas, the thick layer of ice stops abruptly at the island’s edge, forming steep ice cliffs that plunge to the beaches and oceans below…

(read more: NASA Earth Observatory)

NASA Earth Observatory image by Jesse Allen and Robert Simmon

Continuing Eruption at Nishinoshima Joins Two Islands
by Erik Klemetti
Quick volcano news update from Japan! The eruption at Nishinoshima continues and now the new island is no more … because it has joined up with the actual island of Nishinoshima (see above). This is a great example of how volcanic island like this in the Bonin Islands grow over hundreds to thousands of eruptions. Compare these two NASA Earth Observatory images to see how the island has grown between December 8 to December 24…
(read more: Wired Science)
photo: Japan Coast Guard

Continuing Eruption at Nishinoshima Joins Two Islands

by Erik Klemetti

Quick volcano news update from Japan! The eruption at Nishinoshima continues and now the new island is no more … because it has joined up with the actual island of Nishinoshima (see above). This is a great example of how volcanic island like this in the Bonin Islands grow over hundreds to thousands of eruptions. Compare these two NASA Earth Observatory images to see how the island has grown between December 8 to December 24

(read more: Wired Science)

photo: Japan Coast Guard

Indonesian Volcano Spew Ash 3 km Into the Air
A volcano has erupted for the third time in as many months on the western Indonesian island of Sumatra, forcing hundreds of villagers to evacuate, officials say.
Mount Sinabung has spewed a 7km column of ash into the air, prompting authorities to impose a 3km evacuation radius.
The military helped evacuate 1293 people from four villages around the volcano, which was 88km from the provincial capital, Medan. The number of evacuees was expected to rise.
No casualties were reported…
(read more: Stuff.co.nz)

Indonesian Volcano Spew Ash 3 km Into the Air

A volcano has erupted for the third time in as many months on the western Indonesian island of Sumatra, forcing hundreds of villagers to evacuate, officials say.

Mount Sinabung has spewed a 7km column of ash into the air, prompting authorities to impose a 3km evacuation radius.

The military helped evacuate 1293 people from four villages around the volcano, which was 88km from the provincial capital, Medan. The number of evacuees was expected to rise.

No casualties were reported…

(read more: Stuff.co.nz)

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Big Pic: An Overactive Russian Volcano Covers Kamchatka In Ash

Russia’s Klyuchevskaya volcano, one of the most active in the world, has been erupting since mid-August. Last month, it became even more intense, spewing ash from its summit (16,000 feet above sea level) in a plume that reached 32,000 feet above the Earth, along with fountains of lava. NASA’s Landsat 8 satellite grabbed a shot of Klyuchevskaya, located on Russia’s volcano-dense Kamchatka peninsula, in late October after its most explosive activity had calmed down.

This false-color image shows snow and ice as blue-green, ash, clouds and steam as gray, and lava as red…

source 

MONSTER EARTH VOLCANO ONE OF THE SOLAR SYSTEM’S BIGGEST 
The largest volcano on Earth is not in Hawaii, but hidden beneath the western Pacific Ocean and covers an area the size of New Mexico, announced scientists on Thursday. The vast lump of lava is called the Tamu Massif and lies about 1,000 miles (1,600 km) east of Japan and is comparable, though somewhat less voluminous, than the enormous volcano Olympus Mons on Mars. (read more: Discovery News)

MONSTER EARTH VOLCANO ONE OF THE SOLAR SYSTEM’S BIGGEST

The largest volcano on Earth is not in Hawaii, but hidden beneath the western Pacific Ocean and covers an area the size of New Mexico, announced scientists on Thursday. The vast lump of lava is called the Tamu Massif and lies about 1,000 miles (1,600 km) east of Japan and is comparable, though somewhat less voluminous, than the enormous volcano Olympus Mons on Mars.

(read more: Discovery News)


Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI)

This white sponge (in the family Euplectellidae) is anchored to the seafloor with very long spicules. These spicules create microhabitat for very small crustaceans and worms. It is fastened to angular pillow-lava talus near the bottom of the steep talus slope flanking the cone of Axial Seamount. The amount of sediment that has accumulated suggests the cone is fairly old, and the presence of a large, long-lived, sessile organisms such as this sponge suggests the talus slope is stable. Read about what researchers on the WesternFlyer are learning about volcanic eruptions at the deep sea Axial Seamount: 
MBARI Expedictions - 2013

This white sponge (in the family Euplectellidae) is anchored to the seafloor with very long spicules. These spicules create microhabitat for very small crustaceans and worms. It is fastened to angular pillow-lava talus near the bottom of the steep talus slope flanking the cone of Axial Seamount. The amount of sediment that has accumulated suggests the cone is fairly old, and the presence of a large, long-lived, sessile organisms such as this sponge suggests the talus slope is stable.

Read about what researchers on the WesternFlyer are learning about volcanic eruptions at the deep sea Axial Seamount:

MBARI Expedictions - 2013

A lava lake at Mount Nyiragongo
… a volcano found in Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Lava lakes, which can form in three different ways, are large volumes of molten lava, usually basaltic, contained in a volcanic vent, crater, or broad depression. Persistent lava lakes such as the one at Nyiragongo, which is the largest to appear in recent times, are rare.
Photograph: Cai Tjeenk Willink                                   via: Wikipedia

A lava lake at Mount Nyiragongo

a volcano found in Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Lava lakes, which can form in three different ways, are large volumes of molten lava, usually basaltic, contained in a volcanic vent, crater, or broad depression. Persistent lava lakes such as the one at Nyiragongo, which is the largest to appear in recent times, are rare.

Photograph: Cai Tjeenk Willink                                   via: Wikipedia

Local and Global Impacts of the 1783-84 Laki Eruption in Iceland

by Erik Klemetti

Saturday marks the 230th anniversary of the famed Laki (or Skaftár Fires) eruption in Iceland — one of the largest volcanic eruptions in recorded history. It wasn’t a enormous explosion like many people associate with giant eruptions, nothing like Tambora or Krakatau.

However, it did have a profound impact on people living around the entire Northern Hemisphere for years afterwards, although the direct impact the eruption had on the Earth’s climate is still a widely debated and researched topic. In honor of this anniversary, I thought I’d try to give a brief primer on the eruption and why it is such an important eruption, both in terms of Icelandic volcanism and its global impact…

(read more: Wired Science)

(images: T - Ulrich Latzenhofer / Fotopedia; B - Thordarsson and Self (1993))

Mount St. Helens - May 18, 1980
… at 8:32 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time, a magnitude 5.1 earthquake shook Mount St. Helens. The bulge and surrounding area slid away in a gigantic rockslide and debris avalanche, releasing pressure, and triggering a major pumice and ash eruption of the volcano. Thirteen-hundred feet (400 m) of the peak collapsed or blew outwards.
As a result, 24 square miles (62 sq km) of valley was filled by a debris avalanche, 250 square miles (650 sq km) of recreation, timber, and private lands were damaged by a lateral blast, and an estimated 200 million cubic yards (150 million cu m) of material was deposited directly by lahars (volcanic mudflows) into the river channels.
Sixty-one people were killed or are still missing. USGS Photograph taken on May 18, 1980, by Austin Post.
(via: US Geological Survey)

Mount St. Helens - May 18, 1980

… at 8:32 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time, a magnitude 5.1 earthquake shook Mount St. Helens. The bulge and surrounding area slid away in a gigantic rockslide and debris avalanche, releasing pressure, and triggering a major pumice and ash eruption of the volcano. Thirteen-hundred feet (400 m) of the peak collapsed or blew outwards.

As a result, 24 square miles (62 sq km) of valley was filled by a debris avalanche, 250 square miles (650 sq km) of recreation, timber, and private lands were damaged by a lateral blast, and an estimated 200 million cubic yards (150 million cu m) of material was deposited directly by lahars (volcanic mudflows) into the river channels.

Sixty-one people were killed or are still missing. USGS Photograph taken on May 18, 1980, by Austin Post.

(via: US Geological Survey)

Volcano Erupts on Jupiter’s Moon Io
This five-frame sequence of New Horizons images captures the giant plume from Io’s Tvashtar volcano. Snapped by the probe’s Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) as the spacecraft flew past Jupiter earlier this year, this first-ever “movie” of an Io plume clearly shows motion in the cloud of volcanic debris, which extends 330 kilometers (200 mi) above the moon’s surface. Only the upper part of the plume is visible from this vantage point — the plume’s source is 130 kilometers (80 mi) below the edge of Io’s disk, on the far side of the moon…
(read more: Jet Propulsion Laboratory/NASA)
(image: Johns Hopkins Univ./APL)

Volcano Erupts on Jupiter’s Moon Io

This five-frame sequence of New Horizons images captures the giant plume from Io’s Tvashtar volcano. Snapped by the probe’s Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) as the spacecraft flew past Jupiter earlier this year, this first-ever “movie” of an Io plume clearly shows motion in the cloud of volcanic debris, which extends 330 kilometers (200 mi) above the moon’s surface. Only the upper part of the plume is visible from this vantage point — the plume’s source is 130 kilometers (80 mi) below the edge of Io’s disk, on the far side of the moon…

(read more: Jet Propulsion Laboratory/NASA)

(image: Johns Hopkins Univ./APL)

Iceland Volcano Eruption Fueled Ocean Blooms
by Charles Q. Choi
The explosive volcanic eruption Iceland saw in 2010 may have disrupted life in the air above Europe, but it apparently enriched life in the Atlantic Ocean, researchers say.
After nearly two centuries of dormancy, the volcano Eyjafjallajökull (AYA-feeyapla-yurkul) erupted many times over the course of 10 weeks three years ago. These outbursts spewed a giant plume of ash that spread unusually far and stayed for an oddly long time in the atmosphere,forcing widespread flight cancellations for days.
Serendipitously, marine biogeochemist Eric Achterberg at the University of Southampton in England and his colleagues were taking part in a series of research cruises in the Iceland Basin region of the North Atlantic Ocean both during and after the eruption. These three cruises allowed the researchers to measure iron concentrations at the ocean’s surface before, during and after the eruption in areas directly influenced by the plume of iron-rich ash…
(read more: OurAmazingPlanet)            
(photo: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team @ NASA GSFC)

Iceland Volcano Eruption Fueled Ocean Blooms

by Charles Q. Choi

The explosive volcanic eruption Iceland saw in 2010 may have disrupted life in the air above Europe, but it apparently enriched life in the Atlantic Ocean, researchers say.

After nearly two centuries of dormancy, the volcano Eyjafjallajökull (AYA-feeyapla-yurkul) erupted many times over the course of 10 weeks three years ago. These outbursts spewed a giant plume of ash that spread unusually far and stayed for an oddly long time in the atmosphere,forcing widespread flight cancellations for days.

Serendipitously, marine biogeochemist Eric Achterberg at the University of Southampton in England and his colleagues were taking part in a series of research cruises in the Iceland Basin region of the North Atlantic Ocean both during and after the eruption. These three cruises allowed the researchers to measure iron concentrations at the ocean’s surface before, during and after the eruption in areas directly influenced by the plume of iron-rich ash…

(read more: OurAmazingPlanet)            

(photo: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team @ NASA GSFC)