Published on July 3, 2009
• A volcano is a form of land (usually a mountain) where liquid rock (or magma) erupts through the surface of the planet. •Volcanoes usually have short, active periods, separated by longer dormant periods. •Even extinct volcanoes are capable of coming to life again anytime. •Those living in volcanic regions are at risk from ash, debris, lava flows and the volcano erupting.
•The Earth's crust is made up of huge slabs called plates, which fit together like a jigsaw puzzle. These plates sometimes move. •Between the Earth's crust and the mantle is a substance called magma which is made of rock and gases. •When two plates collide, one section slides on top of the other, the one beneath is pushed down. Magma is squeezed up between two plates.
•Rangitoto island had some violent eruptions 600-700 years ago, causing thousands of animals and people to perish in its ash and lava. •This was the biggest and most recent eruption in New Zealand. •Though Rangitoto is a volcano, it is usually referred to as Rangitoto Island.
Did you know… The name "volcano" has its origin from the name of Vulcan, a god of fire in Roman mythology. The rock debris carried by a lateral blast of Mount St. Helens traveled as fast as 250 miles per hour!!! There are more than 500 active volcanoes in the world. More than half of these volcanoes are part of the "Ring of Fire," a region that encircles the Pacific Ocean.
By Bianca, Emily and Ji Won
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