This blog provides commentary on interesting geological events occurring around the world in the context of my own work. This work is, broadly, geological fluid dynamics. The events that I highlight here are those that resonate with my professional life and ideas, and my goal is to interpret them in the context of ideas I've developed in my research. The blog does not represent any particular research agenda. It is written on a personal basis and does not seek to represent the University of Illinois, where I am a professor of geology and physics. Enjoy Geology in Motion! I would be glad to be alerted to geologic events of interest to post here! I hope that this blog can provide current event materials that will make geology come alive.

Banner image is by Ludie Cochrane..

Susan Kieffer can be contacted at s1kieffer at gmail.com

Monday, October 25, 2010

Santorini volcano

Santorini calder in the Aegean, Greece
Photo by Aster aboard the Terra spacecraft, NASA
Santorini Volcano erupted about 30 cubic kilometers of magma in ~1650 B.C. The ash column is estimated to have risen to ~36 kilometers (~22 miles).  The eruption of such a large volume left a large caldera (the whole image is 18 x 18 km). There has been much speculation that this eruption is the source of the myth of the lost land of Atlantis.  The largest island is There, the next largest is Therasia, and the small islands in the center of the caldera are the Kameni Islands, which are the site of ongoing mild activity.  The most recent eruption was phreatomagmatic eruption in 1950, in which phreatic activity preceded the effusion of lavas.  There may have been a precursor to this island as early as 197 BC, but the current island appears to have started in 46 AD.  Interestingly, it was described by a number of the Roman historians, including Pliny the Elder, who would die 33 years later in the eruption of Vesuvius.

No comments: