Shop Windows to the Universe

Learn about planets outside our solar system through Exoplanets and Alien Solar Systems by Tahir Yaqoob, Ph.D., a book in our online store book collection.
This is an image of the eruption of Stromboli volcano.
Click on image for full size
Image from: Dr. J. Alean, Eglisau, Switzerland
For more information, images and video about Stromboli volcano see Stromboli On-Line.

Volcanism

Volcanism is part of the process of bringing material up from the deep interior of a planet and spilling it forth on the surface. Eruptions also deliver fresh gases to the surface from the melted material below. Volcanism is part of the process by which a planet cools off. Even though they are not volcanos, geysers and hot springs are also part of the volcanic process, involving water and hydrothermal activity. Some planetary bodies, like Jupiter's moon Europa also exhibit icy volcanism where water takes the place of lava.

There are several ways in which a volcano forms, just as there are several different kinds of volcanoes. On Earth, the most general cause of volcanism is caused by lithospheric subduction.

There are quite a few other planets which have volcanoes on the surface, including Venus, Mars, and Jupiter's moon Io. Other planets exhibit the results of volcanic activity. These include Mercury, the Earth's Moon, Jupiter's moon Europa, and perhaps Neptune's moon Triton.


Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!

Learn about Earth and space science, and have fun while doing it! The games section of our online store includes a climate change card game and the Traveling Nitrogen game!

Windows to the Universe Community

News

Opportunities

You might also be interested in:

Ready, Set, SCIENCE!: Putting Research to Work in K-8 Science Classrooms

What types of instructional experiences help K-8 students learn science with understanding? What do science educators teachers, teacher leaders, science specialists, professional development staff, curriculum designers, school administrators need to know to create and support such experiences?...more

Eruptions

Volcanic eruptions come in many different forms. Shield volcanoes typically spew lava accompanied only by hot gases. These lavas flow slowly down the mountain with speeds of 15 miles per hour or slower....more

Cooling History, part 1

A planetary body, whether the body is a planet or a moon, cools slowly by radiating energy away into space. The warmth remaining inside a body controls what sort of surface activity, atmospheric activity,...more

Volcanoes

There are several ways in which a volcano can form, just as there are several different kinds of volcanoes. Volcanism is part of the process by which a planet cools off. Hot magma, rising from lower reaches...more

Volcanoes of Venus

Venus has a number of shield volcanoes such as Mauna Loa found on Earth. Among the volcanoes of Venus are Sif Mons (shown here with a lava plain) and Gula Mons on Western Eistla Regio, Rhea Mons and Theia...more

Surface of Io

The surface of Io is completely volcanic, with lava flows of sulfur from the interior, as shown in this image. White patches in the image indicate areas of surface SO2 frost. The heat for this volcanism...more

Lunar Volcanism

This picture of the lunar maria shows the difference betwen the highlands, which are heavily cratered, and the dark maria which are relatively smooth with few craters. The absence of craters indicates...more

Surface of Triton

This gorgeous image of Triton reveals many interesting features of its surface. The surface of Triton is halfway between that of Ganymede and that of Europa, of the Galilean satellites. There are portions...more

Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation and NASA, our Founding Partners (the American Geophysical Union and American Geosciences Institute) as well as through Institutional, Contributing, and Affiliate Partners, individual memberships and generous donors. Thank you for your support! NASA AGU AGI NSF