MessageToEagle.com

Gigantic 'Balloon Of Magma' Is Growing Under Santorini -
Will The Volcano Be Dangerous Again?

10 September, 2012


Share this story:
Follow us:

MessageToEagle.com - Santorini Volcano in Greece is the site of the catastrophic Minoan eruption, one of the largest volcanic eruptions in recorded history of mankind and known as the Thera eruption.

The Minoan eruption took place around 1650 BC. and buried the major port city of Akrotiri with more than 20 meters of ash and created Santorini’s famous, present-day cliffs.

The question is: ‘When will the volcano next erupt?’

Santorini has been relatively calm since its last eruption in 1950. Until now. The Santorini caldera is awake again and rapidly deforming at levels never seen before, explained Georgia Tech Associate Professor Andrew Newman, who has studied Santorini since setting up more than 20 GPS stations on the island in 2006.


“After decades of little activity, a series of earthquakes and deformation began within the Santorini caldera in January of 2011,” said Newman.


Georgia Tech Associate Professor Andrew Newman has positioned more than 20 GPS stations on Santorini. Some have moved as much as 9 centimeters since the caldera rewakened in January of 2011. Should the volcano erupt underwater, it could produce local tsunamis, which could be dangerous for cruise ships that commonly visit the tourist attraction. Credits: Georgia Tech College of Sciences


"“Since then, our instruments on the northern part of the island have moved laterally between five and nine centimeters. The volcano’s magma chamber is filling, and we are keeping a close eye on its activity."


Ashes from the Santorini volcano eruption caused severe climactic change


According to yet another survey carried out by an international team of scientists from Oxford University and the University of Bristol, the chamber of molten rock beneath Santorini’s volcano expanded 10-20 million cubic metres – up to 15 times the size of London’s Olympic Stadium – between January 2011 and April 2012.

The growth of this ‘balloon’ of magma has seen the surface of the island rise 8-14 centimetres during this period, the researchers found.

The results come from an expedition, funded by the UK’s Natural Environment Research Council, which used satellite radar images and Global Positioning System receivers (GPS) that can detect movements of the Earth’s surface of just a few millimetres.

The findings are helping scientists to understand more about the inner workings of the volcano which had its last major explosive eruption 3,600 years ago, burying the islands of Santorini under metres of pumice.

In January 2011, a series of small earthquakes began beneath the islands of Santorini. Most were so small they could only be detected with sensitive seismometers but it was the first sign of activity beneath the volcano to be detected for 25 years.

Following the earthquakes Michelle Parks, an Oxford University DPhil student, spotted signs of movement of the Earth’s surface on Santorini in satellite radar images. Oxford University undergraduate students then helped researchers complete a new survey of the island.

"During my field visits to Santorini in 2011, it became apparent that many of the locals were aware of a change in the behaviour of their volcano. The tour guides, who visit the volcano several times a day, would update me on changes in the amount of strong smelling gas being released from the summit, or changes in the colour of the water in some of the bays around the islands," Michelle Parks of Oxford University’s Department of Earth Sciences said.

"On one particular day in April 2011, two guides told me they had felt an earthquake while they were on the volcano and that the motion of the ground had actually made them jump. Locals working in restaurants on the main island of Thera became aware of the increase in earthquake activity due to the vibration and clinking of glasses in their bars…."

"People were obviously aware that something was happening to the volcano, but it wasn’t until we saw the changes in the GPS, and the uplift on the radar images that we really knew that molten rock was being injected at such a shallow level beneath the volcano.

Many volcanologists study the rocks produced by old eruptions to understand what happened in the past, so it’s exciting to use cutting-edge satellite technology to link that to what’s going on in the volcanic plumbing system right now," Dr Juliet Biggs of the University of Bristol's School of Earth Sciences, co-author of the paper said.

The team calculate that the amount of molten rock that has arrived beneath Santorini in the past year is the equivalent of about 10-20 years growth of the volcano. But this does not mean that an eruption is about to happen: in fact the rate of earthquake activity has dropped off in the past few months.

The research is reported in this week’s Nature Geoscience.

© MessageToEagle.com

See also:
Do Gateways To The Underworld Open? Next Dangerous And Unexpected Opening In The Ground!

Follow MessageToEagle.com for the latest news on Facebook and Twitter !

Don't Miss Our Stories! Get Our Daily Email Newsletter

Enter your email address:


Once you have confirmed your email address, you will be subscribed to the newsletter.

Recommend this article:

What’s Going On Out There? - NASA's RBSP Spacecraft Will Meet ‘Killer Electrons’ And Other Dangerous Phenomena
What's the sun's influence on the Earth and near-Earth space? What makes the radiation belts so dangerous? And why do they react so strangely to solar storms? The Storm Probes will help us understand what's going on out there...


Great Contribution of MIT Students - They Bring Electricity, Heat, and Cooling To African Clinics!

Subscribe To Our Space, Astronomy, Astrophysics, Earth and Xenology News!

Grab the latest RSS feeds right to your reader, desktop or mobile phone.

Subscribe to RSS headline updates from:
Powered by FeedBurner

Go to - MAIN PAGE

Copyright © MessageToEagle.com All rights reserved.
Go to - MAIN PAGE


Advertise With Us!

Submissions

Get our top stories
Follow MessageToEagle.com

 Subscribe in a reader

Join Us On Facebook!

Other Popular Articles

Technology:


Silicone-Based Robots Can Walk And Change Their Appearance

Tractor Beam Works On Increasingly Larger Objects - "Star Wars" Mighty Technology Much Closer

NASA's 'Mighty Eagle' Robotic Prototype Lander Takes Flight - It Can Hover And Move Sideways!

A Milestone Towards Future Satellite-Based Quantum Teleportation Achieved But Race Still Continues!

DeepFlight Super Falcon - A New Advanced "Flying" Submersible - The Future Of Manned Ocean Exploration!

Spying On People Inside Building Through The Walls

Biometrics: Eye-Scanners Can Be Fooled

DARPA's Huge "Spider" Satellites In Action 2015!

UPDATE: Huge Stripe On The Sun - Is Earth In Serious Danger?
UPDATE: This article has now been updated with additional information from NASA including images and video!
The Sun's odd behavior has been mentioned on many occasions recently. As we all await the Solar Cycle 24, scientists keep a close eye on the Sun.


Strange Red Appearance Of Azov Sea - Locals Panic

You might remember the article about the red rocks that puzzled scientists for a long time. This week, scientists and citizens were stunned to see how the Azov Sea suddenly turned red... "It might be a sign of...


Incredible Images Show Giant Sinkhole In Sweden Keeps Expanding!

It looks like something taken straight from a horror movie. An enormous hole leading to hell, some would say. But this is not a movie. This is a real and dangerous phenomenon. New shocking images clearly show the enormous pit in Sweden is expanding. The 200 foot wide open pit is called the "Fabiangropen" (Fabian pit) and is in the Malmberget area is located at Gällivare, 75km from Kiruna, Sweden.

Our Creator Is A Cosmic Computer Programmer - Says JPL Scientist
Are we just a computer simulation? Who or what is the creator? More and more scientists are now seriously considering the possibility that we might live in a matrix, and they say that evidence could be all around us...


Spying On People Inside Building Through The Walls

Now, spying on people at home through the walls is easy. Also find out what's going on behind closed doors - it's nothing particularly difficult. They will even know whether you're sitting or standing!

Thousands Of Dead Fish Wash Ashore Texas Coast
Thousands of dead fish are washing ashore along the Texas coast, from the Colorado River to Galveston Island. Most of the dead animals are Gulf Menhaden, or shad fish. The cause of death remains unclear for the moment.


Stunning Satellite Images Reveal Unidentified Possible Pyramids In Egypt

Two unidentified, possible pyramid complexes have been located with satellite imagery from Google Earth. One of the complex sites contains a distinct, four-sided, truncated, pyramidal shape that is approximately 140 feet in width...


Sun Fires Off Powerful Flares - Their Intensity Increases

The current increase in the number of X-class flares is part of the sun’s normal 11-year solar cycle, during which activity on the sun ramps up to solar maximum, which is expected to peak in late 2013...

Lake In France Turns Red
This year, we have encountered the color red in places where we don't expect to see it. A while back the strange appearance of Azov Sea stunned residents who saw how the water had turned red. The red rocks in China have...

W3Counter