Teach the Earth > Hazards > Visualizations > Volcano Visualizations

Volcano Visualizations

Compiled by John McDaris and Kendra Murray at SERC.

This collection presents links to visualizations of volcanoes and volcanic processes. Visualizations include general depictions of igneous processes as well as work done on real volcanos on Earth and around the solar system.

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Earthscope - Augustine Visualization ( This site may be offline. ) Augustine is a stratovolcano located in Cook Inlets just outside of Anchorage, AK. This page from the Earthscope project presents a map of the island, a photo galley and two 360 degree panaoramas of the island (one interactive and the other a movie).

Savage Earth Animation: Volcanic Eruption (more info) PBS presents an annotated flash animation of a stratovolcano. The text simply describes the features of the volcano, its characteristic eruption, and details about pyroclastic flows.

How Volcanoes Work: Dynamics of a Plinian Eruption (more info) A QuickTime animation of a plinian eruption in cross section view. A variety of pressure surfaces exist within the magma column beneath the erupting volcano, and within the eruption column above the volcano. The site includes describes the nature of these pressure surfaces and explains the dynamic processes associated with the eruption model. It also includes a 3D fly by animation of the eruption model.

Volcano Animations: Mt. Kilauea and Mount Etna (more info) A series of animations that depict geohazards, including earthquakes and volcanoes. The animations stress how Earth is constantly undergoing change. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on "volcano animation" links.

Video Clips on Volcano Live This site provides eruption video footage of various volcanoes. From multiple sources, these clips are small and often grainy, but contain stunning footage of active eruptions.

Video Clips of the 12 May 1996 Pyroclastic Activity: Pyroclastic Flow Meets the Atlantic Ocean! Montserrat Volcano Observatory (more info) For centuries, volcanologists have debated about the fate of pyroclastic flows that come in contact with bodies of water. On 12 May 1996, on the tiny island of Montserrat, a series of three pyroclastic flows cascaded off the unstable dome and raced towards the Atlantic Ocean and were captured on film.

Igneous Rock Crystallization Animation (more info) This Flash animation contains three separate movies, each exhibiting the formation of an igneous rocks in a different environment: a) rocks forming from a deep magma chamber where the slow cooling of magma results in large interlocking crystals; b) rocks forming from a pyroclastic flow with a combination of large and small crystals; and c) rocks with small crystals created from a fast cooling lava results.

Sulfur Volcano on Io (more info) A 3D QuickTime simulation of Io's Pillan Patera sulfur volcano.

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