The Naked Scientists

The Naked Scientists Forum

Author Topic: Supervolcanos  (Read 29811 times)

Offline Les the Scientist

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 39
    • View Profile
Supervolcanos
« on: 11/11/2004 00:35:18 »
Is it likely that Yellowstone National Park will erupt in my lifetime ?


 

Offline neilep

  • Withdrawnmist
  • Naked Science Forum GOD!
  • *******
  • Posts: 20602
  • Thanked: 8 times
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #1 on: 11/11/2004 09:20:20 »
As far as I understand the possiblity is Yes....I can't remember the exact figures but it's either every 100,000 or 5/600,000 years and the time is now, or, it's 100,000 years overdue ......How comforting !!...poor Yogi and Boo Boo !!.....I will check my figures but as far as the time being due, I'm sure I'm accurate. I believe it was quite a startling revelation as the chappy who discovered it had to see it form a plane/helicopter when it dawned on him that it was in fact the whole area of Yellowstone Park, when in fact they had been searching on a much smaller scale.

'Men are the same as women...just inside out !'
 

Offline Exodus

  • Phileas Fogg
  • Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1471
  • Geology
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #2 on: 11/11/2004 11:09:45 »
we were made aware fairly recently that yellowstone is in fact showing signs of activity. A surveyor was mapping the area and taking height measurements. He noticed that his readings were generally considerably higher than a survey conducted in the last century. He was so convinced that he must have made an error that he actually surveyed the site again. The penny dropped when he extended his area and found large areas of previously dry forest flooded and a small boat jetty also under water. Due to a phenomenon called bradyseism the crust in the park has swollen and risen. This is due to the filling of a magma chamber bellow the surface which cuses the crust to bulge. People shouldn't panic though, bradyseism happens fairly regularly in calderas and magma can just as easily cool and sink back down into the mantle and thus lower the bulge once again... think of it like the volcano breathing.

I'll say this though, i doubt you'll see it go off in your life time, geologically speaking its not that overdue. If it DOES go off then not only are you Americans pretty screwed, but the world will also be in BIG trouble. A Yellowstone eruption will be explosive, throwing dust high up into the atmosphere which will block out the sun.
 

Offline neilep

  • Withdrawnmist
  • Naked Science Forum GOD!
  • *******
  • Posts: 20602
  • Thanked: 8 times
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #3 on: 11/11/2004 19:25:31 »
quote:
Originally posted by Exodus

 A Yellowstone eruption will be explosive, throwing dust high up into the atmosphere which will block out the sun.


And it will also be bad news for sun-block cream manufacturers too :D...sorry !!......;)

'Men are the same as women...just inside out !'
 

Offline Ercole

  • First timers
  • *
  • Posts: 5
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #4 on: 21/01/2005 09:26:10 »
The next rain after this mega-eruption will surely improve umbrellas manufacturing... Using steel of course !
« Last Edit: 21/01/2005 09:27:07 by Ercole »
 

Offline Jel

  • First timers
  • *
  • Posts: 5
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #5 on: 10/03/2005 21:56:01 »
Yellowstone is not, however, the only one: Vesuvius seems to have developed a larger chamber underneath, and its proximity to the sea could cause secondary problems to the western Mediterranean coastline. Does anyone know where the others are?
 

Offline neilep

  • Withdrawnmist
  • Naked Science Forum GOD!
  • *******
  • Posts: 20602
  • Thanked: 8 times
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #6 on: 10/03/2005 22:30:58 »
I'm sure I heard on the radio last night that there's another one in New Zealand...but certainly not on the scale of YellowStone.

Men are the same as women.... just inside out !!
 

Offline FlyDutchMan

  • First timers
  • *
  • Posts: 1
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #7 on: 11/03/2005 01:46:19 »
I'm from New Zealand... we do have a supervolcano called Taupo (currently its a lake). It had a minorish explosion (100km3) in 186AD and the chinse felt it and noted red skys and colder temps for the next few years. It has a history of blowing every 2000 years or so, and its largest eruption was 26,500 years ago (called Oruanui)- the third largest known eruption ever. That eruption was only a bit smaller than the Yellowstone one 1.3million years ago - 800km3 as opposed to 1000km3.

I've attached a map of the area, the large lake in the middle is taupo and northen edge is made up from aseries of caldera from more recent explosion.
 

Offline neilep

  • Withdrawnmist
  • Naked Science Forum GOD!
  • *******
  • Posts: 20602
  • Thanked: 8 times
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #8 on: 11/03/2005 02:09:58 »
That's fantatstic FlyDutchMan....thank you very much and welcome to the forum.

Men are the same as women.... just inside out !!
 

Offline Bass

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1340
  • Thanked: 5 times
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #9 on: 29/03/2005 05:48:13 »
As far as known active "supervolcanos", don't forget Long Valley, Calif., Toba in Indonesia and Rabaul in Papua New Guinea
 

Offline chris

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 5339
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • The Naked Scientist
    • View Profile
    • The Naked Scientists
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #10 on: 29/03/2005 08:51:50 »
Hi Bass

I didn;t know about any of those - do tell more.

Chris

"I never forget a face, but in your case I'll make an exception"
 - Groucho Marx
 

Offline Bass

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1340
  • Thanked: 5 times
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #11 on: 29/03/2005 18:45:21 »
Long Valley is located near Mammoth Mountain in California's Sierra Mountains.  While Mammoth is well known for it's skiing, the area is less well known for the Long Valley Caldera.  Last major eruption was about 760,000 years ago with an estimated volume of 600 cubic km.  Deposited the Bishop Tuff.  Long Valley and Mammoth Mountain are still active- the USGS established the Long Valley Volcano Observatory to monitor activity.
Toba, located on Sumatra, Indonesia, has been called Yellowstone's big sister.  Last erupted around 74,000 years ago with an eruptive volume of 2800 cubic km (compared to 2100 cubic km for Yellowstone's largest eruption).  It is thought that this eruption almost caused human extinction- collapsing the population to a few thousand individuals.
Rabaul in Papua New Guinea probably erupted around the 6th century.  While not as large as some "supervolcanoes", it is very active (large eruption in 1994) and is mostly underwater- which gives it the potential for explosive eruption.
 

Offline OldMan

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 222
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #12 on: 30/03/2005 04:06:23 »
Forgive my seismic ignorance but the recent quake to hit Indonesia (8.7 was it?) isn't any sort of indicator or trigger to such volcanic activity is it?

Please say "no Tim you're a fool no go back to hiding under your rock!"

It has been too long since what little they taught in school about such things.

Tim
« Last Edit: 30/03/2005 04:07:06 by OldMan »
 

Offline daveshorts

  • Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2583
  • Physics, Experiments
    • View Profile
    • http://www.chaosscience.org.uk
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #13 on: 30/03/2005 14:46:42 »
If I remember rightly from my first year Geology course, seismic activity can be indicative of imminent volcanic activity, as moving magma tends to stress and crack the surrounding rock, but really big quakes like this one are associated with plate boundaries, where you have massive lumps of rock grinding against each other under pressure, and are not directly associated with volcanos. The stresses produced by moving magma are just not big enough to produce this size of eathquake.

I suppose if a nearby volcano was about to go off a big earthquake could trigger it, but it would have gone off in the next couple of years anyway.
 

Offline Bass

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1340
  • Thanked: 5 times
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #14 on: 06/04/2005 05:44:15 »
The bad news is that the two big quakes have increased stress on the fault that runs down the spine of Sumatra- increasing the likelihood of another large quake in the vicinity of Toba.
The good news is that Toba's eruption cycle is around 300,000 years and it last erupted around 74,000 years ago.  So I guess its safe to quaff down a few Fosters for the next 200,000 years or so, even if your glass is upside down.

Prediction is difficult, especially the future.  -Niels Bohr
 

Offline OldMan

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 222
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #15 on: 07/04/2005 03:58:02 »
Fosters[xx(] they still make that stuff?[:0]

Tim
 

Offline Bradley5

  • First timers
  • *
  • Posts: 2
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #16 on: 11/04/2005 06:46:24 »
Could Toba be on a countdown to another eruption with all of this earthquake activity?
 

Offline chimera

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 475
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #17 on: 13/04/2005 03:18:11 »
quote:
Originally posted by OldMan

Forgive my seismic ignorance but the recent quake to hit Indonesia (8.7 was it?) isn't any sort of indicator or trigger to such volcanic activity is it?
Please say "no Tim you're a fool no go back to hiding under your rock!"



Eeerm. [}:)]

http://www.newsday.com/news/nationworld/world/wire/sns-ap-indonesia-volcano,0,837593.story?coll=sns-ap-world-headlines
 

Offline ADD HAHAHA

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 100
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #18 on: 13/04/2005 03:52:36 »
what if some one drop 1 of those nukes that puches holes in the gound on yellow stone or some other supervolc. :(
 

Offline chimera

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 475
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #19 on: 13/04/2005 04:29:31 »
Don't worry, our nukes are puny stuff compared with such forces. The earthquake that caused the tsunami was in the order of 30,000 to 100,000 times the bomb on Hiroshima, just to give you an idea of how much bigger. If it was so unstable that even a nuke could make it go off, you don't want to be around anyway...
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

  • Naked Science Forum GOD!
  • *******
  • Posts: 12656
  • Thanked: 3 times
  • A stitch in time would have confused Einstein.
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #20 on: 13/04/2005 13:43:12 »
I know it's not a volcano (or, at least I don't think it is) but part of 1 of the Canary Islands is due to fall into the Atlantic at some point. That's predicted to cause a tidal wave that could devastate the Eastern seaboard of the USA
 

Offline chimera

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 475
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #21 on: 13/04/2005 19:37:24 »
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

  • Naked Science Forum GOD!
  • *******
  • Posts: 12656
  • Thanked: 3 times
  • A stitch in time would have confused Einstein.
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #22 on: 19/04/2005 02:23:12 »
chimera - interesting article: but there's obviously still a lot of contention about it
 

Offline chimera

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 475
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #23 on: 19/04/2005 11:04:42 »
Well, they were convinced for a while it was a ticking time-bomb. Now they're not so sure, but any large quake could still cause a big surprise, and suddenly gigatons of stuff slide into the Ocean. The wave would be over 100 meters up close and wipe out most of Western Morocco after an hour, would flood the Eastern American seaside heavily after 9 hrs or so, and even cause 6-10 waves as far away as the UK and Holland, where I live.

I'd still have a few hours to get to my boat, park it on the nearest large water and point my stern to where I suspect it would be coming from, and ride it out, though.

added: Anatomy of a Tsunami Disaster (1958)

http://www.drgeorgepc.com/Tsunami1958LituyaB.html
« Last Edit: 19/04/2005 11:12:53 by chimera »
 

Offline Exodus

  • Phileas Fogg
  • Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1471
  • Geology
    • View Profile
Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #24 on: 25/04/2005 14:15:04 »
Interesting how they are now saying its been hyped up... i still firmly believe it is possible. A little out of date i know, but the BBC did a very good Horizon programme in 2000 about La Palma in the Canary Islands.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/horizon/2000/mega_tsunami_transcript.shtml

This is the link if anyone fancies a read.
 

The Naked Scientists Forum

Re: Supervolcanos
« Reply #24 on: 25/04/2005 14:15:04 »

 

SMF 2.0.10 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
SMFAds for Free Forums