Q:

When did the first volcano erupt?

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Quick Answer

The first volcano erupted approximately 4.5 billion years ago. This is when the earth first came into existence, and long before the first humans walked the earth, according to Scholastic, Inc.

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Full Answer

The most catastrophic volcanic eruption in modern times took place in 1815. A volcano named Tambora erupted in Indonesia, causing the death of approximately 90,000 people, though most of them died from starvation rather than as a direct result of the eruption.

When a volcano has an intense, explosive eruption, it can fling rocks at a velocity of up to 670 miles per hour. Generally speaking, when a volcano starts to erupt, the eruption continues for around 10 years. Some eruptions have been known to last for hundreds of years.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is an ash cloud?

    A:

    An ash cloud is a large cloud of smoke and debris that forms over a volcano after it erupts. Ash clouds consist of several elements, including ash, gases, dust, steam, rock fragments and other materials that come from inside the volcano and combine in the air above the crater.

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  • Q:

    What is an inactive volcano?

    A:

    An inactive volcano is one that could erupt but has not erupted for more than 10,000 years. Inactive volcanoes are also called dormant or sleeping volcanoes.

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  • Q:

    What is a side vent in a volcano?

    A:

    Side vents, also known as secondary vents, in a volcano allow some of the magma and gases to escape but are not the main vent where the eruption takes place. One of the volcano's most recognized characteristic is the crater, but this hole actually forms after the eruption has taken place.

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  • Q:

    When did Yellowstone last erupt?

    A:

    Although Yellowstone is still an active volcano, its last lava-producing eruption occurred about 70,000 years ago and was non-explosive. The most recent non-explosive steam eruption occurred 13,800 years ago.

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