Lava lake

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Lava lake in Nyiragongo, in a molten state
Lava lake in Erta Ale
Lava fountains in the Halemaʻumaʻu lava lake, Kīlauea
Lava lake in Marum crater, Ambrym
Satellite picture showing the lava lake of Mount Erebus
Aerial view of lava lake in Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater, Kīlauea. The crater is about 250 m in diameter.
Aerial view of a lava lake atop the Kūpaʻianahā vent on the east rift zone of Kīlauea volcano. This lava lake has since solidified, but two other lava lakes currently exist on Kilauea.

Lava lakes are large volumes of molten lava, usually basaltic, contained in a volcanic vent, crater, or broad depression. The term is used to describe both lava lakes that are wholly or partly molten and those that are solidified (sometimes referred to as frozen lava lakes in this case).

Formation[edit]

Lava lakes can form in three ways:[1]

  1. From one or more vents in a crater that erupts enough lava to partially fill the crater
  2. When lava pours into a crater or broad depression and partially fills the crater
  3. Atop a new vent that erupts lava continuously for a period of several weeks or more and slowly builds a crater progressively higher than the surrounding ground.

Notable examples[edit]

Persistent lava lakes are a rare phenomenon. Only a few volcanoes have hosted persistent or near-persistent lava lakes during recent decades:

Kīlauea has the distinction of having two persistent lava lakes: one in the Halemaʻumaʻu vent cavity within the summit caldera, and another located within the Puʻu ʻŌʻō cone located on the east rift zone of the volcano.[6]

Nyiragongo lava lake has usually been the largest one (and the most voluminous) in recent history -the depth/size of lava lakes can vary considerably with time- reaching a size of 700 meters wide in 1982,[7] although Masaya is believed to have hosted an even larger lava lake at the time of the Spanish conquest, being 1000 meters wide in 1670.[8]

In addition to the aforementioned persistent lava lakes, a certain number of occurrences of temporary lava lakes (sometimes called lava ponds or lava pools, depending on their size and nature[9]) have also been observed and are listed in the following table.

List of volcanoes having displayed past or present lava lake activity[edit]

Volcano Location
Persistent or near-persistent lava lakes during recent decades
Erta Ale[2] Ethiopia
Mount Erebus[3] Ross Island, Antarctica
Kīlauea[4] (two lava lakes in both Halemaʻumaʻu and Pu'u O'o craters) Hawaii (Big Island)
Nyiragongo[5] (the largest one in the past century) Democratic Republic of the Congo
Recent intermittent lava lake activity
Masaya[10] Nicaragua
Ambrym[11] (two lava lakes in both Benbow and Marum craters) Ambrym Island, Vanuatu
Villarrica[12] Chile
Karthala[13] Grande Comore, Comoros
Piton de la Fournaise [14][15] (small temporary lava pond in Dolomieu crater) Réunion Island
Ol Doinyo Lengai [16][17] (only occurrence of carbonatite lava pond as it is the only active volcano in the world emitting carbonatite lava) Tanzania
Unconfirmed lava lake activity
Telica[18] (possibly in 1971 and 1999–2000) Nicaragua
Tungurahua[19] (possibly in 1999) Ecuador
Tofua[20] (possibly in 2004 and 2006) Tofua Island, Tonga
Nabro[21] (possibly in 2012) Eritrea
Lava lake activity suggested by satellite remote-sensing data
Mount Michael[22] Saunders Island, South Sandwich Islands
Mount Belinda[23] Montagu Island, South Sandwich Islands
Mawson Peak[24] Heard Island
Past lava lake activity (historical times)
Mount Matavanu[25][26] (during the 1905–1911 eruption) Savai'i Island, Samoa
Nyamuragira[26][27] (lava lake located within the summit caldera, confirmed for the first time in 1921, drained in 1938, and temporary lava pond in the Kituro cone on the SW flank, during the 1948 eruption) Democratic Republic of the Congo
Capelinhos[28][29] (in 1958, a Surtseyan eruption) Faial Island, Azores
Surtsey Island[30][31][32] (in 1964, during the 1963–67 eruption which led to the formation of the island) Iceland
Tolbachik,[26][33] part of the Klyuchevskaya volcanic complex (last observation of lava lake activity in 1964) Kamchatka, Russia
Etna[34] (in 1974) Sicily, Italy
Ardoukôba[35] (in 1978) Djibouti
Mount Mihara[36] (in 1986) Izu Ōshima, Japan
Stromboli[37] (in 1986 and 1989) Aeolian Islands, Italy
La Cumbre[38] (in 1995) Fernandina Island, Galápagos
Pacaya[39] (in 2000 and 2001) Guatemala

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "VHP Photo Glossary: Lava lake". Volcanoes.usgs.gov. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  2. ^ a b "Global Volcanism Program : Erta Ale". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  3. ^ a b "Global Volcanism Program : Erebus". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  4. ^ a b "Kīlauea". Global Volcanism Program, Smithsonian Institution. http://www.volcano.si.edu/world/volcano.cfm?vnum=1301-02-.
  5. ^ a b "Nyiragongo". Global Volcanism Program, Smithsonian Institution. http://www.volcano.si.edu/world/volcano.cfm?vnum=0203-03%3D.
  6. ^ "HVO Kilauea Status". Volcanoes.usgs.gov. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  7. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Nyiragongo". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  8. ^ "Pit crater structure and processes governing persistent activity at Masaya Volcano, Nicaragua". Eps.mcgill.ca. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  9. ^ Tazieff, H. (1994). "Permanent lava lakes: Observed facts and induced mechanisms". Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research 63: 3–2. doi:10.1016/0377-0273(94)90015-9.  edit
  10. ^ "Masaya". Global Volcanism Program, Smithsonian Institution. http://www.volcano.si.edu/world/volcano.cfm?vnum=1404%E2%80%9310%3D.
  11. ^ "Ambrum". Global Volcanism Program, Smithsonian Institution. http://www.volcano.si.edu/world/volcano.cfm?vnum=0507-04%3D.
  12. ^ "Villarrica". Global Volcanism Program, Smithsonian Institution. http://www.volcano.si.edu/world/volcano.cfm?vnum=1507%E2%80%9312%3D.
  13. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Karthala". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  14. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Fournaise, Piton de la". Volcano.si.edu. doi:10.1029/2007GL031248. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  15. ^ "Terre et Volcans News v4". Terreetvolcans.free.fr. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  16. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Lengai, Ol Doinyo". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  17. ^ "Etnatao: Ol Doinyo Lengai Volcano Tanzania". YouTube. 2010-02-11. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  18. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Telica". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  19. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Tungurahua". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  20. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Tofua". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  21. ^ "Eruption volcanique, activité éruptive du volcan Nabro". Activolcans.info. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  22. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Michael". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  23. ^ First recorded eruption of Mount Belinda volcano (Montagu Island), South Sandwich Islands, Bull Volcanol (2005) 67:415–422 (PDF)
  24. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Heard". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  25. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Savai'i". Volcano.si.edu. 2013-01-03. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  26. ^ a b c Tazieff, Haroun, Cratères en feu, éd. Arthaud, 1951.
  27. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Nyamuragira". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  28. ^ "GC1QN4C Capelinhos Volcano [Faial] (Earthcache) in Arquipélago dos Açores, Portugal created by almeidara". Geocaching.com. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  29. ^ "おまんこ動画を探そう!". Vulcaodoscapelinhos.org. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  30. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Vestmannaeyjar". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  31. ^ "Inspired by Iceland stories: Tell us the story of your visit to Iceland". Stories.inspiredbyiceland.com. 2011-05-26. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  32. ^ Duncan C. Blanchard, From Raindrops to Volcanoes: Adventures With Sea Surface Meteorology, Dover Publications, 1967.
  33. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Tolbachik". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  34. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Etna". Volcano.si.edu. doi:10.1029/2005GL022527.2005. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  35. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Ardoukôba". Volcano.si.edu. 2013-01-03. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  36. ^ "Izu-Oshima Volcano Observatory". Retrieved 2014-02-20. 
  37. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Stromboli". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  38. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Fernandina". Volcano.si.edu. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  39. ^ "Global Volcanism Program : Pacaya". Volcano.si.edu. doi:10.1029/2007GC001791. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 

 This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Geological Survey document: the Volcano Hazards Program. "VHP Photo Glossary: Lava lake". 

External links[edit]