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What are the 6 types of Volcanic Eruptions?

2023-12-21 00:00:00 / episode: 339


Volcanoes are wonderful, dramatic landforms in nature that create volcanic eruptions.

There is tons and tons of science behind volcanoes, but today I'm just going to talk about the basic kinds of eruptions.

What are the basic six eruptions of the volcanoes?

Hi, and welcome to the Les Perras podcast.

Today is Episode 339, and it's about volcanic eruptions.

To begin with, we can put all the eruptions into two categories, or maybe we can put them on a scale.

The scale is from effusive to explosive.

effusive is talking about gentle flows of lava coming out of the ground

and explosive is well, like an explosion.

Let's start with the most effusive eruption.


Icelandic eruptions happen in Iceland, and they come from a long crack in the ground.

The lava flows sideways out of the crack, and it

generally goes to the nearest downhill slope and goes downhill.

These types of volcanic eruptions usually create large, flat, table-shaped formations.

Hawaiian eruptions

These kinds of eruptions are very similar to Icelandic,

but they usually come out of the top of the volcano.

The lava still flows gently and smoothly down, and it makes giant Shield volcanoes.

Usually, you can outrun the lava quite easily.


These types of eruptions were characterised by the volcanoes on the island of Stromboli, near Italy.

They're more explosive, and they send lava flying into the air. They can have cycles or continuous eruptions where the lava is being squirted out into the air

and it comes down sometimes far away from the place it got squirted out of.


This is similar to the strombolian in two ways.

It was named after the volcanoes on Vulcano Island near Italy, which is close to Stromboli Island.

and they are also kind of explosive, with the lava being squirted out of the top of the volcano.

but they're a little more dramatic than the strombolian-style eruptions.

These usually end up making a cone-style volcano.


these Eruptions were named after the volcano Pelea, and they tend to be very explosive,

sending large Columns of Ash into the air and creating pyroclastic flows

A pyroclastic flow is a combination of

air, water, steam, mud, and lava

all rushing down the side of the volcano,

usually at tremendous speeds.


This one was named after Pliny the Elder,

who was killed in the eruption of Vesuvius.

It's just like the peléan,

but it's even more dramatic,

sending shocking explosions and pyroclastic flows rushing down the mountain

at enormous speeds over 100 km an hour.

While Pliny of the Elder was killed by this eruption, Pliny the younger, his nephew, was able to write about it,

so we have a record of the event.

As you can see, there is a wide range in the different kinds of eruptions that volcanoes do

from cool looking to totally dramatic and scary.

Keep this in mind if you ever want to to check out a

volcano in real life.