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Briefing // How To Apply // T-Minus 3 Weeks // T-Minus 2 Weeks // T-Minus 1 Week // Mission Prep // Mission // Post-Mission
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Volcanic Dangers
How Volcanoes Work
Volc. & Montserrat
Case Study
Mt.Pinatubo Eruption
One Year After
Five Years After

Earth Sys. Analysis
Mt.Pinatubo Analysis
Sphere Analysis Tool
Mission Preparation
Volc. Monitoring Instructions
Volc. Practice Data
Volcano Graphs
Team Evaluation

Mt. Pinatubo

The Philippines are an arc of volcanic islands located in a zone where two tectonic plates come together. Pinatubo, a large volcano on the Philippine isle of Luzon, is a stratovolcano, or composite volcano. Stratovolcano is the name given to volcanoes whose repeated eruptions have left layers of volcanic materials built-up on top of each other, forming a mountain. The magma within this type of volcanic mountain is viscous (thick) but highly gas-charged, defining it as an explosive volcano. It erupts in a violent fashion and causes hazards from both the flow of magma and from the debris it fires into the atmosphere. Prior to 1990, Pinatubo was an inactive, or dormant volcano.

To prepare your emergency response team you must investigate the dangers the people of Luzon faced during Operation Mt. Pinatubo. The volcano on Montserrat is much like Mt. Pinatubo in the Philippines. They are both stratovolcanoes located in tropical areas. The Mt. Pinatubo eruption provides plenty of historical data for you to study. Use your knowledge of Earth system science to analyze the destruction from the eruption. Like the people of Luzon, the people of Montserrat may need your help.

Review Questions

1) Volcanic activity often occurs near the boundaries of tectonic plates. Explain why this may be.

2) What is a stratovolcano? Describe the magma within a stratovolcano.

3) According to this article, what is meant by an “explosive” volcano?