25 April, 2013

A To Z Challenge: Volcanology And Volcanoes Building Up Steam

Volcanology, also known as vulcanology (though it has nothing to do with Spock), is a branch of geology that studies volcanoes in addition to associated phenomena such as material expelled during an eruption and the plate tectonics that creates volcanoes. The field also includes geodesy, geophysics, and geochemistry.

Recently, scientists have reevaluated their model of the Yellowstone caldera (also called a supervolcano or megavolcano), estimating that there is 50% more magma beneath the surface than previously thought and that the magma is contained within a single large chamber. Yellowstone National Park is, technically, a volcano in the process of preparing to explode once again, generating 1,000-3,000 earthquakes a year and displaying thermal activity on the surface--the last time it erupted was 640,000 years ago, though there have been smaller events as geologically recent as 70,000 years ago.

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Sources:
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/volcanology
http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/632202/volcanology
http://vulcan.wr.usgs.gov/Outreach/StudyVolcanoes/
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/earth/deadliest-volcanoes.html
http://www.nps.gov/yell/naturescience/volcanoqa.htm
http://www.livescience.com/28821-yellowstone-supervolcano-bigger-plume.html

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Are there any volcanoes in your region? Have you ever been to Yellowstone? 


----The Golden Eagle

18 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I've been to Yellowstone - there are small earthquakes there all the time.

Samuel Bledsoe said...

Is it true the god Vulcan lives inside volcanoes where he keeps his forge and uses cyclops as his help?

Pat Hatt said...

Never been there and no volcanoes here thankfully.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I find the Yellowstone Volcano thing so interesting. I've read quite a bit about it before and isn't there one in Siberia too.

Andrew Leon said...

Did you see the new discoveries about Old Faithful?

Cindy Dwyer said...

So should we plan a trip to Yellowstone sooner rather than later? ;)

Jeff Hargett said...

Not the first post on Volcanology I've seen today. And not the first time the blogger told readers to not confuse it with Spock. What does this say of a culture that holds science so dear? (Sorry, TNG play, couldn't help it.)

Mark Means said...

I've always found the study of volcanoes to be pretty interesting. When I lived in Sicily, we were on the Naval base, right next to Mt. Etna...it was pretty cool :)

Jagoda said...

OMG--I wouldn't want to be at Yellowstone when it blows! Such a gorgeous place, though. So worth the visit. Even better, the Grand Teton National Park next to it.
Jagoda

DWei said...

No to both. Maybe I can use this as an excuse to go visit Japan again.

Bob Scotney said...

Volcanology is a fascinating subject - if you don't live too near to one that's active. When Yellowstone blows it's likely to be devastating.

Sandy said...

Get out of my head, lol. Seriously had to smile when I saw the picture, as it's I was going to use for Y post...yep, Yellowstone. I found it interesting about the volcanoes as well when I did my search before writing post. Funny thing is I don't remember any of the rangers tellings us when we there anything about volcanoes. It's been a good number of years ago, so I assume this is new info. The thermo stuff was talked alot about, but I don't remember them saying volcanoes. I need to ask my husband if he remembers it that way.

A-Z challenge

....Petty Witter said...

Such interesting stuff. We visited a volcanic island when in Greece but sadly I couldn't go down into the crater itself because of the pungent smell.

C. Lee McKenzie said...

Makes taking a walk on old Mother Earth a dangerous undertaking, doesn't it?

Paul Tobin said...

Fantastic photo-I think the Yellowstone volcano is one of those nightmare scenarios- theres nothing we could do about it.

Deniz Bevan said...

Volcanoes are so interesting! Neil Gaiman recently retumblred photos of an active volcano in Russia. So beautiful and scary at the same time!

Susan Kane said...

We talk about going to Yellowstone to see the caldera frequently. Watching too many disaster movies makes us believe that the caldera would wait to erupt until we got there.

The Golden Eagle said...

Alex: Interesting!

Samuel: Yup. ;)

Pat: That's good! The no volcanoes part, anyway.

Susan: I didn't know there was a volcano in Siberia.

Andrew: Er, I remember reading something about Old Faitfhul, but I don't remember it very well.

Cindy: Probably. Though it's not like anyone has a solid prediction.

Jeff: LOL. Who can resist a Star Trek reference?

Mark: I watched a program that mentioned Mt. Etna. Apparently the effects of another explosion in that region could be pretty horrific.

Jagoda: I really want to go to Yellowstone one of these days.

DWei: I would! :)

Bob: Most likely will be--which is kind of scary.

Sandy: I'm sorry to steal your Yellowstone picture! I guess we both agree it's a gorgeous image. :)

That's interesting.

Petty Witter: I would imagine a volcano smelling pretty bad. They look dramatic at a distance--but they've got all those fumes.

Lee: It does.

Paul: Not at this point, anyway.

Deniz: I'll have to see if I can find those photos!

Susan: LOL. I'd be worried about that, too, even though the odds are astronomical.