Guest Video: Lava on Earth and in the Solar System

There has been a lot of writing required this week. It came down to a choice of either doing the Solar System caldera post for today or the American Civil War post for tomorrow, and I chose the latter.

Here is a YouTube video that will get you in the mood for next Sunday’s look at Solar System calderas. It’s an October 2013 talk for the general public by the University of Missouri’s Alex Sehlke, a PhD student, called “Extraterrestrial Volcanism.” He studies lava rheology, which is a very handy thing to know when you’re studying volcanoes that sit in places that you can’t go and sample.

So how can scientists tell what lava is like on other planets? He shows you some of the methods used, near the end of the video.

This video also shows the good way to do a YouTube video of a lecture. The camera doesn’t show us the speaker. Instead, it focuses on the slides (and videos, in this case). Of course, this particular topic lends itself to a visual presentation. Anyway, I hope you enjoy as much as I did that surreal flow of images of extraterrestrial volcanoes that opens the video before the speakers get it together and start talking.

He briefly mentions other types of volcanism – molten sulfur on Jupiter’s moon Io and cryovolcanism (ice volcanoes) on other moons – but focuses on molten-rock volcanism, and so will I next week in talking about what I’ve learned of planetary calderas.

Categories: Sunday morning volcano

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