October 1, 2011

What Would Happen if You Nuked a Volcano?

Keith Veronese, io9

AP Photo

Internet lore and science fiction tales suggest that dropping a nuclear weapon on an erupting volcano would halt the eruption. But would that really be the case? Would it just make the eruption worse by opening up more magma tubes? Would it alter the lava flows? Would it send reverberations through the earth's core and crack the world in half (as suggested by the 1965 classic, Crack in the World)? Since no country is likely to drop a nuclear bomb on a volcano in the near future (well, at least Italy and the U.S. didn't take that train of advice with Mount Etna), let's take a look at the possibilities...

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TAGGED: Nuclear Fission, Nuclear Bomb, Volcano, Volcano Eruption