Alexandria, Va. — Hawaii's Kilauea volcano is famously effusive: Low-viscosity lava has been oozing out of the main caldera and two active rift zones along the southern shore of the Big Island since 1983. But scientists suspect that Kilauea's eruptions haven't always been so mild. In the past 2,500 years, at least two cycles of explosive eruptions lasting several centuries each have rocked the island. The switch from effusive to explosive is likely to occur again, scientists say, but probably not anytime soon.
Read more about what ash deposits left by previous eruptions show about Kilauea's history and future in the October issue of EARTH magazine: http://bit.ly/1v8YYjl.
For more stories about the science of our planet, check out EARTH magazine online or subscribe at http://www.earthmagazine.org. The October issue, now available on the digital newsstand, features stories on the activity of the Alaskan megathrust fault beneath Kodiak, a new proxy for determining past ocean acidification levels, and a retrospective on the construction of the Panama Canal, plus much, much more.
Keep up to date with the latest happenings in Earth, energy and environment news with EARTH magazine online at: http://www.earthmagazine.org/. Published by the American Geosciences Institute, EARTH is your source for the science behind the headlines.
The American Geosciences Institute is a nonprofit federation of 49 geoscientific and professional associations that represents more than 250,000 geologists, geophysicists and other earth scientists. Founded in 1948, AGI provides information services to geoscientists, serves as a voice of shared interests in the profession, plays a major role in strengthening geoscience education, and strives to increase public awareness of the vital role the geosciences play in society's use of resources, resiliency to natural hazards, and interaction with the environment.