The most erect of volcanoes?

Have you ever wondered about which is the tallest active volcano on the planet? It sounds like a fairly straightforward question. But, as with all simple questions it quickly turns into a quagmire of definitions. The first of the definitions starts out in linguistics, and that is what is the definition of “active”. It turns…

Darwin’s frog: a story of two volcanoes

In our modern world, no animal has gone extinct because of a volcanic eruption – as far as we know! That should not come as a big surprise. Volcanoes tend to affect fairly small areas around them, at least regions that are much smaller than the typical areas where species live. One animal particularly at…

A volcano year

This is the time of the year when people like to look back. What was the year like? Good or bad – or, as is almost always the case, a bit of a mix? And if looking back is not your thing, newspapers run columns where specialists (of varying level of expertise) are given a…

Volcanic Organs and Gandalf’s Pipe

Back when I was a kid, I had two interests in life, physics and playing music. In music my favourite instrument was the church organ. Over the following years those two interests merged into one as I got interested in how soundwaves form, and onwards into what I usually call waveform theory. Waveform theory is…

Hell and its angels at Kilauea

There has been a lot of discussion on what will happen next at Kilauea. For 30 years it overflowed through Pu’u’O’o, leaving the summit safely under-pressured. That had been changing slowly as Pu’u’O’o declined, and the summit had become restless. A lava lake made its appearance and slowly enlarged itself. But this mode, with pressure…

And The Woolly-Winner Is…

Thank you to all that voted, we had a great turn out which certainly helps distinguish clear winners and other voting trends. I hope some of you managed to find the time to read up on some of the volcanic features you’d never heard about and gained some insight along the way. So, without further…

The Woolly Mammoth-Sized Eruption Poll

Following on from Carl’s latest post on some unrest in Iceland, I wanted to gauge public opinion on who they thought was going to make the headlines proper rather than the usual clickbait nonsense from the bile-spouting tabloids. I hope recent misleading headlines haven’t swayed our visitors into voting for their latest scare stories! Try…

Signs and portents of Iceland – Revisited

When I planned to write this article about the current states of Iceland I only wanted to write about Katla and Öraefajökull. But, as things turned out a third volcano got my attention. In the end this article will be about how hard it can be for a layman to see what is important and…

The fall of Surtsey

In the previous post, we read about the birth of Surtsey. It was a famous eruption, which taught us how quickly and unexpectedly new land can form. We have since seen similar eruptions elsewhere as well. Nishinoshima is a small and isolated Japanese island, 1000 kilometers south of Tokyo. An eruption started just off its…

Surtsey – The Birth of the Modern World

(A repost, originally written by Carl, November 13, 2013. The post has been expanded from the original.) Tomorrow, the fourteenth of November, will be the official birthday of Surtsey. In a way it was a triple birth. First of all it was the birth of the Island of Surtsey, it was also the birth of…