Portal:Volcanoes
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Portal:Volcanoes

The Volcanoes portal

Sabancaya volcano erupting, Peru in 2017

A volcano is a rupture in the crust of a planetary-mass object, such as Earth, that allows hot lava, volcanic ash, and gases to escape from a magma chamber below the surface.

On Earth, volcanoes are most often found where tectonic plates are diverging or converging, and most are found underwater. For example, a mid-ocean ridge, such as the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, has volcanoes caused by divergent tectonic plates whereas the Pacific Ring of Fire has volcanoes caused by convergent tectonic plates. Volcanoes can also form where there is stretching and thinning of the crust's plates, such as in the East African Rift and the Wells Gray-Clearwater volcanic field and Rio Grande Rift in North America. Volcanism away from plate boundaries has been postulated to arise from upwelling diapirs from the core-mantle boundary, 3,000 kilometers (1,900 mi) deep in the Earth. This results in hotspot volcanism, of which the Hawaiian hotspot is an example. Volcanoes are usually not created where two tectonic plates slide past one another.

Large eruptions can affect atmospheric temperature as ash and droplets of sulfuric acid obscure the Sun and cool the Earth's troposphere. Historically, large volcanic eruptions have been followed by volcanic winters which have caused catastrophic famines. (Full article...)

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A tower of grey ash erupts above a mountain
The 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo, the largest eruption since 1912, is dwarfed by the eruptions in this list.

In a volcanic eruption, lava, volcanic bombs and ash, and various gases are expelled from a volcanic vent and fissure. While many eruptions only pose dangers to the immediately surrounding area, Earth's largest eruptions can have a major regional or even global impact, with some affecting the climate and contributing to mass extinctions. Volcanic eruptions can generally be characterized as either explosive eruptions, sudden ejections of rock and ash, or effusive eruptions, relatively gentle outpourings of lava. A separate list is given below for each type.

There have probably been many such eruptions during Earth's history beyond those shown in these lists. However erosion and plate tectonics have taken their toll, and many eruptions have not left enough evidence for geologists to establish their size. Even for the eruptions listed here, estimates of the volume erupted can be subject to considerable uncertainty. (Full article...)

Did you know

Bathymetry of Patton Seamount

General images

The following are images from various volcano-related articles on Wikipedia.

Selected biography - show another

Man wearing a coat and hat and holding a pad of paper sits on a rock, with a lake and several mountains visible in the background
Glicken at work

Harry Glicken (March 7, 1958 - June 3, 1991) was an American volcanologist. He researched Mount St. Helens in the United States before and after its 1980 eruption, and was very distraught about the death of fellow volcanologist David A. Johnston, who had switched shifts with Glicken so that the latter could attend an interview. In 1991, while conducting avalanche research on Mount Unzen in Japan, Glicken and fellow volcanologists Katia and Maurice Krafft were killed by a pyroclastic flow. His remains were found four days later, and were cremated in accordance with his parents' request. Glicken and Johnston remain the only American volcanologists known to have died in volcanic eruptions.

Despite a long-term interest in working for the United States Geological Survey, Glicken never received a permanent post there because employees found him eccentric. Conducting independent research from sponsorships granted by the National Science Foundation and other organizations, Glicken accrued expertise in the field of volcanic debris avalanches. He also wrote several major publications on the topic, including his doctoral dissertation based on his research at St. Helens titled "Rockslide-debris Avalanche of May 18, 1980, Mount St. Helens Volcano, Washington" that initiated widespread interest in the phenomenon.

Since being published posthumously by Glicken's colleagues in 1996, the report has been acknowledged by many other publications on debris avalanches. Following his death, Glicken was praised by associates for his love of volcanoes and commitment to his field. (Full article...)

Selected picture

Chachani and Mount Fatima

Summit of the Chachani, the highest of the three volcanoes above Arequipa, Peru. The path to reach the summit can be clearly seen. Despite the altitude, the mountain is entirely free of snow, mainly due to the dry climate in the area.

Selected quote

"This ground is hot enough to cook the Sunday roast!"

-- John Seach, remarking on his boots melting whilst on the slope of Lopevi Volcano, 2000


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Featured articles: 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens  • 2007-2008 Nazko earthquakes  • Amchitka  • Armero tragedy  • Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve  • Cerro Azul (Chile volcano)  • David A. Johnston  • Enceladus (moon)  • Geology of the Lassen volcanic area  • Io (moon)  • Loihi Seamount  • Mauna Kea  • Mauna Loa  • Metacomet Ridge  • Mono-Inyo Craters  • Mount Cayley volcanic field  • Mount St. Helens  • Mount Tambora  • Nevado del Ruiz  • Surtsey  • The Volcano (British Columbia)  • Triton (moon)  • Upper and Lower Table Rock  • Volcanism on Io  • Volcano (South Park)  • Yellowstone National Park

Featured lists: List of volcanoes in Indonesia  • List of volcanoes in the Hawaiian - Emperor seamount chain  • List of largest volcanic eruptions

Featured pictures: There are currently 43 volcano-related Featured pictures. A full gallery can be seen here.

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Good articles: Abyssal plain  • Amak Volcano  • Anahim hotspot  • Axial Seamount  • Ben Nevis  • Bowie Seamount  • Crater Lake  • Davidson Seamount  • Ferdinandea  • Gareloi Volcano  • Geyser  • Glacier Peak  • Hawaii hotspot  • Hual?lai  • Kohala (mountain)  • Lake Toba  • Minoan eruption  • Mount Adams (Washington)  • Mount Bailey  • Mount Baker  • Mount Cleveland (Alaska)  • Mount Edziza volcanic complex  • Mount Garibaldi  • Mount Hood  • Mount Kenya  • Mount Rainier  • Mount Redoubt  • Mount Tehama  • Mount Thielsen  • Mount Vesuvius  • Peter I Island  • Roxy Ann Peak  • Rùm  • Sakurajima  • Sangay  • Silverthrone Caldera  • Staffa  • Types of volcanic eruptions  • Volcanic ash  • Weh Island  • Wells Gray-Clearwater volcanic field  • Yamsay Mountain

Valued pictures: A gallery of volcano-related valued pictures can be seen here.

What you can do

Things you can do
  • Add the {{WikiProject Volcanoes}} message box to talk pages of articles within the scope of this project, including appropriate assessments, if needed.
  • Add appropriate volcano type categories to articles, and verify the accuracy of any existing categories. See the section "Categorization" below.
  • Add {{infobox mountain}} to articles if needed and missing, and add volcano-related fields to existing infoboxes if these are missing.
  • Expand volcano articles which are stubs, especially by adding photos and (most importantly) proper references.
  • Help improve articles related to Hawaiian and Canadian volcanism by joining the Hawaiian and Canadian workgroups.
  • Improve some of the project's most visible articles.


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