When we think of volcanoes, we think of places like Hawaii and other locales along the Ring of Fire. But scientists have just voiced their concerns about a super volcano that’s lurking just below the ground’s surface in Yellowstone National Park. The silent but deadly Wyoming super volcano hasn’t budged in over 640,000 years but when it does erupt, it’s not going to be pretty.
Get all the super volcano details after the jump!
Yellowstone’s supervolcano in the largest in North America and one of the top three largest in the world. “The term ‘supervolcano’ refers to a measure of volume of material erupted and explosiveness,” says The Tucson Citizen. While it’s just a prediction, scientists say that when the super volcano does blow, it’ll shoot lava and ash over 25 miles into the air and will be much more powerful than the Mount St. Helens eruption in 1980.
Scientists have noted that the super volcano has been rising about three inches per year over the past seven years which is the fastest they’ve seen since 1923–when record keeping began. University of Utah’s Bob Smith told National Geographic:
It’s an extraordinary uplift, because it covers such a large area and the rates are so high…At the beginning we were concerned it could be leading up to an eruption, but once we saw [the magma] was at a depth of ten kilometers, we weren’t so concerned. If it had been at depths of two or three kilometers [one or two miles], we’d have been a lot more concerned.
While doomsday scenarios have taken hold, there’s no need to start worrying–although the news of a super volcano is a tad unsettling.
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