IMAGES: Under the Volcano

Science  30 Sep 2005:
Vol. 309, Issue 5744, pp. 2141
DOI: 10.1126/science.309.5744.2141a

Glowing chunks of lava tumble down the slopes of the Italian volcano Stromboli during a 2003 eruption. Located between Sicily and the Italian mainland, the restive mountain is one of the world's most active volcanoes, spurting debris several times an hour. Take a virtual hike up to the peak and excavate its geology and history at Stromboli Online, hosted by Italian researchers Roberto Carniel and Marco Fulle and Swiss teacher Jürg Alean. A primer traces Stromboli's formation from the time it pushed above the sea some 160,000 years ago. The volcano has been shooting off continually for about 2000 years, and spectacular photos and video record some of its recent blasts. Visitors can also probe the physics of eruptions with a simulator that calculates the trajectories of Stromboli's “bombs,” partly molten lava globs.

Once you've scaled Stromboli, venture to other volcanoes around the world with the site's many multimedia tours. You can peer into Ethiopia's Erta Ale, which cradles a seething lava lake, and tour the Caribbean island of Montserrat, which the Soufrière Hills volcano devastated in 1995.

www.swisseduc.ch/stromboli

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