The threat of the awakening of the Yellowstone superwolkan is growing

In the Grand Teton National Park, not far from the Yellowstone superwolk, cracks in the rocks have been found. Expanding holes are fraught with at least traumas of tourists and landslides, and as a maximum may be symptoms of the awakening of the volcano, so part of the park was urgently closed to visit.

Geologists constantly observe this area. The fact is that the Yellowstone super volcano, erupting very rarely, does it seriously. Its last eruption occurred about 630,000 years ago and was one of the largest in the history of the Earth. Considering that it erupts about once in 600 000 years, it can be expected that soon the volcano can wake up again. Soon, by geological measures, of course, plus or minus a few tens of thousands of years – but there is no guarantee that this will not happen just now.

At the moment, the Yellowstone volcano “recharges” its magma chambers, filling them with molten rock from the Earth’s mantle. Scientists can not yet invent a tool that accurately and in advance warns of a volcanic eruption, but can measure how quickly the chambers are filled with magma. In the future, when it is possible to collect certain statistics, this new method can be used to predict the beginning of the eruption. Researchers from the University of Washington state that it is the filling of magma chambers that is key to the eruption process. “It’s like coal in a stove,” says research co-author Professor Peter Larson. “He heats the cauldron. The cauldron explodes »

When the chambers are sufficiently filled, and the magmatic plume properly heats the rhyolite from below – an explosive, silicon-rich rock – in the end an explosion and eruption occurs. Outwardly, about 1000 cubic kilometers of magma break out. It can destroy the surrounding territories and hard to affect the lives of our entire planet.

Scientists are trying to develop plans for immersing the volcano into hibernation. While simple and surely working methods are not invented. For example, NASA offered to cool it by drilling a ten-kilometer mine in magmatic chambers and supplying water under high pressure. However, if the drilling point is incorrectly chosen, it can provoke an explosion and an eruption that was tried to avoid.