Science Snap (#34) – Kick ’em Jenny

Kick ’em Jenny is a submarine volcano located 8km to the north of the Caribbean island of Grenada. It lies close to the small, uninhabited volcanic islands of Ronde, Diamond, Ill Caille and Les Tantes, though no physical evidence of the volcano is evident from land. At least twelve recorded eruptions have occurred since Kick […]

Skiing on Mt Ruapehu, North Island, New Zealand. Photo credit: Airflore

Science Snap (#34): Lakes and lahars at Mt Ruapehu

Mt Ruapehu is the largest mountain on the North Island of New Zealand. As well as being a popular ski resort, Ruapehu is an active andesitic stratovolcano. Formed approximately 200,000 years ago, activity is currently confined to the Crater Lake vent; this deep depression fills with water from snow melt between eruptive episodes. Similarly to […]

Eddy currents being generated by external cilia of coral.  The paths of the tracer particles are colour-coded by fluid velocity. Image courtesy of MIT and the researchers

Science Snap (#32): Coral currents

Coral is misunderstood.  It may look like a beautiful underwater plant, and for a long time it was thought to be one, but is in fact an invertebrate.  The coral structures are colonies made up of individual small polyps.  These produce an exoskeleton made up of calcium carbonate, which helps to preserve them in life and also in […]

Ontake

Phreatic eruptions – the silent assasins

The recent eruption of Mt Ontake, Japan tragically killed at least 50 hikers who were on the volcano at the time. Within hours of the eruption taking place, social media was flooded with first-hand video footage illustrating just how close many survivors came to perishing in an onrushing pyroclastic flow. Despite having a sophisticated seismic […]

Mammatus_MSH

Science snap (#31): Mammatus clouds

After all the thunderous weather this weekend and being British, I thought I’d do a weather themed science snap. Don’t bolt yet; it’s a volcanic-weather themed! This is a picture of mammatus clouds following the eruption of Mount St. Helens in 1980. These clouds are pretty rare, unusual and distinctive. Formally, the Glossary of Meteorology […]

Aust cliff, near the Severn Bridge in south Gloucestershire. Photo credit: Charly Stamper

Science Snap (#30): Aust Cliff, Gloucestershire

One of the most fascinating things about geology is its ability to reveal global events from evidence contained within a single outcrop. The cliff exposure at Aust in Gloucestershire, UK, is a spectacularly colourful example of this. Located beneath the original Severn Bridge, and running alongside the Severn Estuary, the 40m tall rock face records […]

Science Snap (#29): African Fairy Circles

Originally posted on the EGU blog network If you’re wandering among the arid desert that stretches from Angola to South Africa, you may notice the ground pot-marked by millions of circular barren patches. These striking features are known as “Fairy circles”, and can grow up to 15 meters in diameter. Tall grasses often surround these circles, further […]

Science Snap (#28): The Eye of the Sahara

Originally posted on the EGU blog network Surrounded by thousands of square miles of ubiquitous desert, the “Eye of the Sahara” peers out from the Earth’s surface and at nearly 50 km wide, its easily visible from space too. The “Eye of the Sahara” is known as a Richat Structure, a geological feature consisting of […]

Science Snap (#28): Brandberg Massif, Namibia

Originally posted on the EGU blog network Brandberg Massif is Namibia’s highest mountain, but if you look from above, you’ll notice it’s no ordinary one. Brandberg is a single mass of granite that pierced its way through the Earth’s crust into the Namib Desert. Looking at the Landsat 7 image, Brandberg is a circular dark […]

Science Snap (#26): Angel Falls, Venezuela

Originally posted on the EGU blog network Angel Falls is the world’s highest uninterrupted waterfall in the Canaima National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site in the Gran Sabana region of Bolívar State, in Venezuela. The waterfall drops from the summit of the largest tepui (table-top mountain) of the Guiana Highlands of South America, Auyantepui, […]