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How Volcanoes Work: Eruption Types
This site describes the variability of eruption types, from quiescent lava emissions to extremely violent and explosive events. Eruption variability is largely related to magma composition and the amount of water present. Types of eruptions discussed include fissure and Hawaiian eruptions, which are characterized by fire fountains and lava lakes, strombolian eruptions as exemplified by Paricutin in Mexico, and eruptions that are often associated with growing lava domes, such as that at Mt. Pelee in 1902, and with the generation of pyroclastic flows from dome collapse, known as vulcanian eruptions. Numerous active links throughout the site lead to more examples and detailed explanations.
Intended for grade levels:
  • High (9-12)
  • College (13-14)
  • College (15-16)
Type of resource:
  • Text:
    • Ref. material
  • Geological Sciences:
    • Geology
Technical requirements:
No specific technical requirements, just a browser required
Cost / Copyright:
No cost
Images credited to government organizations are in the public domain, and can be downloaded and used. It would be appropriate, however, to properly acknowledge the individuals and government agencies for each downloaded image. The remainder of the images and graphics are not in the public domain. These may not be downloaded and used, unless permission is granted from the individuals acknowledged in the expanded caption for each image.
DLESE Catalog ID: DLESE-000-000-005-296
Educational standards:
  • National Science Education Standards (NSES):
    • 9-12:
      • D - Earth and space science:
        • Energy in the earth system
        • Origin and evolution of the earth system
      • F - Science in personal / social perspectives:
        • Natural and human-induced hazards
Related resources:
This resource is referenced by 'How Volcanoes Work'
Resource contact / Creator / Publisher:
Author: Dr Victor E. Camp
Department of Geological Science, San Diego State University