What’s happening with Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano?

Source: Indian Express

What is the News?

Scientists are on alert for a possible eruption of Hawaii’s Kilauea Volcano within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.

About Kilauea Volcano:
  1. Kilauea, also called Mount Kilauea, is located in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on the southeastern part of the island of Hawaii, U.S.A.
  2. It is an active shield volcano. Historically, it is the most active of the five volcanoes that together form the Big Island of Hawaii.
What is Volcano?
  1. A Volcano is an opening on the surface of a planet or moon that allows material warmer than its surroundings to escape from its interior. 
  2. When this material escapes, it causes an eruption. An eruption can be explosive, sending material high into the sky. Or it can be calmer, with gentle flows of material.

Types: Volcanoes can be active, dormant, or extinct. 

  1. Active volcanoes are volcanoes that have had recent eruptions or are expected to have eruptions in the near future. 
  2. Dormant volcanoes no longer produce eruptions, but might again sometime in the future. 
  3. Extinct volcanoes will likely never erupt again.

Causes of Volcano: There are three reasons why magma might rise and cause eruptions onto Earth’s surface:

  1. Firstly, Magma can rise when pieces of Earth’s crust called tectonic plates slowly move away from each other. The magma rises up to fill in the space. When this happens underwater volcanoes can form. 
  2. Secondly, Magma also rises when these tectonic plates move toward each other. When this happens, part of Earth’s crust can be forced deep into its interior. The high heat and pressure cause the crust to melt and rise as magma. 
  3. Lastly, a final way that magma rises is over hot spots. Hot spots are exactly what they sound like–hot areas inside of Earth. These areas heat up magma. The magma becomes less dense. When it is less dense, it rises.
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