Volcanoes

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A volcano erupts when the pressure of a subterranean pool of magma becomes great enough to crack the earth's crust. Whether the eruption results in a violent explosion or a slow seepage depends on several different factors, according to How Stuff Works.

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  • What is the most destructive volcano in the world?

    Q: What is the most destructive volcano in the world?

    A: To humans, the most destructive volcano in the world is Mount Tambora in Indonesia. This volcano created the most powerful eruption in known history and killed 100,000 people along the way. Its eruption was 100 times more powerful than Vesuvius.
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  • What is a lateral blast?

    Q: What is a lateral blast?

    A: A lateral blast, also known as a lateral eruption, is a volcanic eruption that occurs out of the side of a volcano instead of at its summit. An example of a lateral blast is the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens.
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  • When did Mount Saint Helens erupt?

    Q: When did Mount Saint Helens erupt?

    A: Mount St. Helens' most significant eruption in modern times occurred on March 20, 1980. It was followed by additional eruptions between Dec. 7, 1989 to Jan. 6, 1990, Nov. 5, 1990 to Feb. 14, 1991, Oct.11, 2004, Mar. 8, 2005, and between Jan. 16, 2008 to July 10, 2008.
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  • Why are there volcanoes?

    Q: Why are there volcanoes?

    A: Volcanic vents allow the Earth to release built up gases from the heat and pressure emanating from its core. Magma rises towards the surface, and as the pressure builds the magma seeks outlets through which to flow. The higher the pressure build-up, the greater the volcanic explosion.
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  • What gases are produced by volcanic eruptions?

    Q: What gases are produced by volcanic eruptions?

    A: Volcanic eruptions mainly produce steam (H2 0 ), sulfur dioxide (SO 2 ) and carbon dioxide (CO 2 ). They do release other gases in lesser amounts, such as carbon monoxide (CO), helium (He), hydrogen (H 2 ), hydrogen chloride (HCL), hydrogen fluoride (HF) and hydrogen sulfide (H 2 S).
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  • What damage do volcanoes cause?

    Q: What damage do volcanoes cause?

    A: Volcanoes cause physical damage to structures and buildings, wildlife, local vegetation and the atmosphere, as well as posing health risks. Residences within the vicinity of a volcanic eruption often receive timely notice before an eruption occurs. This reduces the likelihood of danger to humans.
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  • What are the different parts of a volcano?

    Q: What are the different parts of a volcano?

    A: The main parts of a volcano include the summit crater, the magma chamber, the central vent and the edifice. While volcanoes vary considerably in terms of size and shape, most land volcanoes have structural similarities.
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  • What are the main features of a volcano?

    Q: What are the main features of a volcano?

    A: The main features of a volcano include a vent, a summit crater and a magma chamber. The vent is an opening through which volcanic material is erupted. Volcanoes can have more than one vent. The summit crater is the large concave opening that holds the central vent at the top of the volcano. The magma chamber is the large pool-like structure inside the volcano that holds the magma.
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  • What is an active volcano?

    Q: What is an active volcano?

    A: An active volcano is one that has had at least one eruption in the past 10,000 years. An active volcano can be dormant or erupting.
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  • What causes volcanic eruptions?

    Q: What causes volcanic eruptions?

    A: Volcanic eruptions occur when magma builds up beneath the Earth's crust and forces its way to the surface. Natural vents in the crust allow magma passage to the surface, and eruptions occur when the magma that forms is less dense than the material above it, causing it to flow upward. In some cases, this flow is slow and steady, but it can also be rapid and violent.
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  • What is the difference between magma and lava?

    Q: What is the difference between magma and lava?

    A: Magma and lava are the same substance in two different forms. Magma is molten rock that is found beneath the earth's crust, while lava is what magma becomes once it reaches the surface and erupts from a volcano or crack in the earth.
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  • What are the names of some dormant volcanoes?

    Q: What are the names of some dormant volcanoes?

    A: Mount Fuji and Mount Ranier are both names of dormant volcanoes. Dormant volcanoes are those that have not recently erupted but are still expected to at some point in time.
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  • What are active and inactive volcanoes?

    Q: What are active and inactive volcanoes?

    A: Active volcanoes are those that have erupted recently or regularly erupt, and inactive volcanoes are those that have not erupted for a long time. The exact time distinction between active and inactive volcanoes differs between experts.
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  • What is the oldest volcano in the world?

    Q: What is the oldest volcano in the world?

    A: Mt. Etna is considered the oldest volcano in the world. Its first recorded eruption took place around 1500 B.C.E. Since that date, the volcano is believed to have erupted an additional 190 times.
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  • Where is Mount Kilimanjaro located?

    Q: Where is Mount Kilimanjaro located?

    A: Mount Kilimanjaro is located in Tanzania. It is a dormant volcano comprising three volcanic cones, and is the highest peak in Africa.
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  • How was Mount Kilimanjaro formed?

    Q: How was Mount Kilimanjaro formed?

    A: Mount Kilimanjaro is a stratovolcano that formed as the plates below it dropped and porous basalt rock magma erupted through the surface of the ocean. The magma and other debris formed layers with each eruption, eventually rising high enough to bring Mount Kilimanjaro to its height of 19,341 feet.
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  • How tall is Mount Vesuvius?

    Q: How tall is Mount Vesuvius?

    A: Mount Vesuvius is a volcano that is roughly 4,300 feet tall, according to About.com's Ancient/Classical History expert. It is located in Italy, near the Bay of Naples.
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  • What are the positive and negative effects of volcanoes?

    Q: What are the positive and negative effects of volcanoes?

    A: The negative effects of volcanoes include the destruction of man-made and natural environments and the death of human, animal and plant life. On the other hand, volcanoes generate geothermal energy and produce nutrients that result in fertile soil.
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  • How does a volcano form?

    Q: How does a volcano form?

    A: A volcano forms when a vent in the Earth's crust allows magma to well up from below. The magma fills a void underneath the surface, and when it builds up enough pressure, it bursts through to the surface. As the magma cools, it hardens into rock, and multiple eruptions may build up the mountainous form of a volcano.
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  • What is the closest volcano to Denver, Colorado?

    Q: What is the closest volcano to Denver, Colorado?

    A: There are no active volcanoes near Denver, Colorado. Nearby extinct volcanoes are located 2 hours from Denver in the Central Colorado volcanic field. These include the Grizzly Peak and Mount Aetna cauldrons and Bonanza and Marshall Creek calderas. The Central Colorado Volcanic Field is located in Park and Teller counties.
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  • What is an extinct volcano?

    Q: What is an extinct volcano?

    A: An extinct volcano is one that has not erupted in at least 10,000 years and is not expected to erupt in the future, according to Oregon State University. There can be confusion between dormant and extinct volcanoes, but the difference between the two is that a dormant volcano may erupt even if it is in the distant future.
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