Geologists predict the imminent eruption of a volcano in the sea off Oregon

Underwater volcano on the sea-axial ridge of Juan de Fuca Ridge off the coast of North Oregon to begin a new eruption in 2018, say geologists, accurately predicted the recent eruption of the volcano in 2011.

Volcanic eruptions pose a great threat to human civilization and life in general. The explosive eruption of the so-called supervolcanoes could cause the disappearance of entire countries. In recent years, scientists have made significant progress in predicting awakening volcanoes.

Underwater Hell

Thus, a group of geologists led by William Chadwick (William Chadwick) from Oregon State University in Newport (USA) successfully used data from observations of the axial volcano over the past decade and has predicted the last eruption of an underwater mountain in April 2011, five years before the disaster, in 2005.

When their prediction was fulfilled, Chadwick and his colleagues decided to make another prediction "volcanic weather," which they published in three articles in the journal Nature Geoscience. According to their calculations, the new eruption to occur between 2014 and 2020, and is likely to happen in 2018.

In the first study group led by Chadwick watched for the pumping rate of the volcano magma, tracking the height of the seabed in the vicinity of the axial mountain during an eruption in 2011.

"This volcano is unique in that it is one of the few centers in the world of underwater volcanic activity, followed by long-term observations were made. And now we can understand the meaning of the height fluctuations of the seabed. Since the penultimate eruption in 1998 gradually increased the height of the bottom — the pool of magma under the volcano slowly filled. But for 4-5 months before the eruption rate of magma has increased sharply. According to our calculations, it has grown three times, which allowed us to predict the previous eruption, "- said Chadwick.

According to the researchers, the current state of the volcano repeats its configuration after the eruption of 1998. So, sank to the seabed 200 meters after the eruption, and began to rise about six days after the eruption. The average growth rate of the bottom level — 1.2 meters per year — indicates that the next exit hibernation axial volcano should happen after seven years, that is in 2018.

Predictive geology

The second group of geologists led by Robert Dzyak (Robert Dziak) from Oregon State University analyzed data from seismic monitoring, were recorded during the eruption of axial.

According to them, the year before the eruption of the volcano in the frequent micro-earthquake, the frequency of which reached up to 50 a day in mid-April 2011. On the day of the eruption, on April 6, the scientists recorded more than a thousand earthquakes. Most of them occurred in the two hours before the eruption. The researchers believe that this behavior of the volcano helps to know about the beginning of the eruption in 2018 before the first undersea magma flows and prepare all the tools to monitor the disaster.

A third research team led by David Keressa (David Caress) of the Research Institute "Monterey Bay Aquarium" in Moss Landing (USA) studied the topographical changes seabed that followed the eruption of April 2011.

As the researchers note, the eruption is very difficult to assess, because the lava was moving through the channels, arising from previous eruptions. However, geologists were able to estimate the total volume of the eruption and examine some of the properties in the form of frozen lava flows of molten rock.

According to their calculations, the eruption in 2011 spread over an area of 10 square kilometers and the total volume of the ejected material is about 0.1 cubic kilometers, which is about the amount of gas and ash emitted during the eruption of the Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajökull in 2010.

Scientists believe that further observation and study of axial volcano eruption later in 2018, will help to better understand the processes that occur in the submarine volcanic centers during periods of sleep and waking.

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