Mauna Loa has basalt lava that is very low in silica. The lava is extremely hot and runny, and the volcano tends to produce large volumes of it when it erupts. Mauna Loa's lava is considered particularly fluid as compared to the lava of other volcanoes in its chain.
Mauna Loa is a typical shield volcano located in the Hawaii island chain. Like other shield volcanoes, it has gently sloping sides due to the runny lava it produces. Mauna Loa's basalt lava may be thin, but the enormous flows over thousands of years have built up the volcano into the largest volcano on Earth.Learn More
Quiet eruptions are volcanic eruptions that explode gently, with broad sheets of slowly flowing lava. Shield volcanoes, such as those in Hawaii, are commonly associated with quiet eruptions.Full Answer >
Volcanic craters and calderas differ mainly in the way they are formed. Craters tend to be more nearly circular than calderas, and they are often, though not always, smaller than calderas. Craters are the vents through which gas, magma and tephra are ejected, while calderas form as a result of local collapse of the surrounding rock.Full Answer >
There are three places a volcano can occur: at mid-ocean ridges, at subduction zones where a continental and ocean plate collide, and at a hot spot located in the middle of a plate. Mid-ocean ridges are caused by divergent tectonic plates and are the most volcanically active feature on earth.Full Answer >
The eruption of Mount Pinatubo in 1991 was the second largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century. The eruption released a huge volume of volcanic ash and sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere. This caused the planet to experience a global cooling in the following year and temperatures to decrease significantly.Full Answer >