Are Antarctic Volcanoes Dangerous?

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Antarctic Volcanoes and Their Influence on the World Ocean

Antarctica is the mainland. And one of the best evidence for this is that the thickness of the crust here is much larger than under the ocean floor. Geologically, this is a tough platform block, surrounded by uneven folded systems. Under the load of the ice cover, the crust of the earth in the region of the ice sheet sagged 800–1000 meters. In the marginal parts of the continent, a manifestation of modern volcanism is observed. We decided to tell you more about Antarctic volcanoes.


Volcanoes Everywhere

In those old days, when science geology was experiencing its childhood, an active volcano in the middle of ice and snow of a frozen continent seemed extremely mysterious. Today’s geologists are no longer surprised by such phenomena. They can easily explain the presence of volcanoes, wherever they appear. The climate here is not critical. Generally speaking, volcanic rocks are often found in Antarctica. They are very old. From a geological point of view, they represent the product of the volcanic activity of those times when the continent did not yet occupy its modern polar position.


Modern Active Volcanoes

Today, only two volcanoes are active in Antarctica. This is Mount Erebus, south of New Zealand. The second is the volcanic island of Deception, which is located about 850 km southeast of Cape Horn. More than 10,000 years ago, its caldera produced a powerful explosion, throwing about 30 km³ of molten rock.

In Antarctica, besides the Erebus region, hot springs on Heard and Kerguelen islands are well known. Since most of Antarctica is covered with a powerful ice shell, it is possible that in other areas there are also geysers. They are hidden by ice.

There are many volcanoes in Antarctica. Some of them, especially the island volcanoes of Antarctica, have erupted in the last 200 years. Many of the eruptions occurred without witnesses and were recorded when volcanic activity came to an end and sometimes backdating because this region is sparsely populated.

Conclusion and Forecasts

One of the interesting features of the mysterious mainland is aseismicity. Until now, not a single seismic station has registered any epicenter of earthquakes over the ice sheet. This is a very strange phenomenon, considering that the crust in the Antarctic region is under heavy loads and moves up and down as the glacier decreases and increases.

Therefore, the main question that researchers put before themselves is this. How can the level of the World Ocean rise under the influence of Antarctic volcanoes? There is no answer yet. The assumptions of scientists contradict each other. Geologists still have to solve this riddle.


Tags: Antarctica, volcanoes, Deception, Cape Horn, Mount Erebus, Mount Erebus, seismicity, the World Ocean, forecast.


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Pictures used in post taken from: Unsplash, Pexels



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