Monster: Scientists find missing link in Yellowstone plumbing- supervolcano contains enough magma to fill the Grand Canyon

April 2015YELLOWSTONEYellowstone National Park is the home of one of the world’s largest volcanoes, one that is quiescent for the moment but is capable of erupting with catastrophic violence at a scale never before witnessed by human beings. In a big eruption, Yellowstone would eject 1,000 times as much material as the 1980 Mount St. Helens eruption. This would be a disaster felt on a global scale, which is why scientists are looking at this thing closely. On Thursday, a team from the University of Utah published a study, in the journal Science that for the first time offers a complete diagram of the plumbing of the Yellowstone volcanic system.
The new report fills in a missing link of the system. It describes a large reservoir of hot rock, mostly solid but with some melted rock in the mix, that lies beneath a shallow, already-documented magma chamber.  The newly discovered reservoir is 4.5 times larger than the chamber above it. There’s enough magma there to fill the Grand Canyon nearly 14 times. The reservoir is on top of a long plume of magma that emerges from deep within the Earth’s mantle. This system has been in place for roughly 17 million years, with the main change being the movement of the North American tectonic plate, creeping at the rate of roughly an inch a year toward the southwest. A trail of remnant calderas can be detected across Idaho, Oregon and Nevada, looking like a string of beads, marking the migration of the tectonic plate. A similar phenomenon is seen in the Hawaiian Islands as the Pacific plate moves over a hot spot, stringing out volcanoes, old to new, dormant to active.
“This is like a giant conduit. It starts down at 1,000 kilometers. It’s a pipe that starts down in the Earth,” said Robert Smith, emeritus professor of geophysics at the University of Utah and a co-author of the new paper. The lead author is his colleague Hsin-Hua Huang. This new picture doesn’t change, fundamentally, the risk assessment of Yellowstone, but it will help scientists understand the mechanics of the volcano. Risk assessment is tricky for low-probability, high-consequence events like volcanic eruptions. The big Yellowstone eruptions occur on time scales of many hundreds of thousands of years. Smith said the repeat time for a caldera explosion at Yellowstone is roughly 700,000 years. But the smaller eruptions, with lava flowing over the surface, are more frequent. There have been at least 50 such smaller eruptions since the caldera exploded 640,000 years ago. The most recent was about 70,000 years ago.
This is a volcano that can erupt either in a big way or a truly colossal and catastrophic way. The big eruptions can send lava flowing over a big portion of the park; the really huge ones can form a giant crater, or caldera. The last time Yellowstone had a calderic eruption was 640,000 years ago, and the misshapen hole it created was about 25 miles by 37 miles across. Geological processes don’t follow clocks. These are chaotic systems, with strain building unpredictably as distant faults break and the geological stresses shift here and there. Bottom line: Yellowstone is unpredictable. There’s no sign at all that this old volcano is going to erupt anytime soon, either in a big way or a huge, show-stopper way. But neither is there any evidence that it’s running out of steam. –Washington Post CNN
Filed October 2014
The unpredictable nature of volcanoes: 2014 Japan’s Mt. Ontake, and 2015 Chile’s Calbuco Volcano both erupted without warning. We have to understand this is the nature of a good percentage of volcanic systems on this planet. Supervolcanoes maybe even more unpredictable, and it’s anybody’s guess what a supervolcano will do because no one has ever witnessed one of these systems going off, or  has ever survived and eruption to live to talk or write about it. -TEP
This entry was posted in Black Swan Event, Dormant fault activation, Earth Changes, Earth Watch, Earthquake Omens?, Extinction Threat, High-risk potential hazard zone, Magma Plume activity, Magnetic pole migration, New volcanic activity, Potential Earthchange hotspot, Prophecies referenced, Seismic tremors, Signs of Magnetic Field weakening, Time - Event Acceleration, Volcanic Eruption, Volcanic gas emissions, Volcano unrest, Volcano Watch. Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Monster: Scientists find missing link in Yellowstone plumbing- supervolcano contains enough magma to fill the Grand Canyon

  1. Dennis E. says:

    This is my opinion. If I was a prudent person, looking at what is unfolding about me, especially in regard to earth changes, I would silently prepare to live a significant length of time without the local services I take for granted now. Not only food but……the ability to stay warm.

    Looking at the major military training exercises that are underway, you have to ponder if they are preparing for a major natural disaster or an economic collapse and major riots within cities.
    I have read that if Greece defaults, then look for Mexico.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Dennis E. Since mommy government cannot predict any kind of natural occurrences I would think that they are much more concerned with economic collapse which could easily occur if the petro dollar is done away with by China, Russia, and Iran etc. in retaliation for USA involvement with other countries that want out. If the USA dollar does collapse as some have had visions of this occurring then all hell breaks loose and it opens the door for other countries to attack. Some have said that they see the Euro unraveling first and then soon after the dollar. Makes sense with what you just wrote. If China has the new banker on the Monopoly board then the Federal reserve does what? Force our politicians to go to war again? Massive high level suicides? Just not sure!

      Liked by 1 person

    • yeah,we are in trouble.


  2. C.S. says:

    “These are chaotic systems, with strain building unpredictably as distant faults break and the geological stresses shift here and there.”

    I wonder if all the fracking in the mid-west might contribute to “geological stresses?” Just a thought.


  3. LeeH says:

    So it’s capable of anything up to v.e.i 9, which is game over?


    • The day Yellowstone has a large-scale eruption – it’s going to be game over for most of the people on this planet. Estimates are a billion people could die within just the first year from the fallout effect of ash and the global temperature plunge. It would destroy the growing seasons, and would cover most US arable land with ash, including the U.S. Midwest breadbasket. And the eruption could conceivably last for months or even years, making most of N. America uninhabitable – we don’t know how long these massive eruptions occur. These supervolcanic eruptions are not only extremely explosive but a system like Yellowstone could also be sustained.

      However, let’s not worry until we have to worry


  4. Yellow Bird says:

    someone made this comment at Volcano Discovery… i have no idea whether it is on target, or even how to research it… but thought it might be another clue worth mentioning…
    “kevin bauer to Krishnakumar Sadasivam • 3 months ago
    I have read,I forget where,that someone made the connection/assertion that when the Solar Winds are slow,then Eruptions happen at Volcanoes. The Solar Wind speed today has been hovering at 300-250 KPH which is slower than normal. Normal speeds are at 350-400 KPH”

    Solar Wind info is regularly updated here:
    currently Solar Winds at 368.9kps… i think above poster must have meant kps, not kph.
    wonder if solar winds were low the day Calbuco went off? could higher wind speeds possibly be why there has not been a 3rd eruption so far?


  5. Jim says:

    To my amazement one of the news channels actually gave a brief account of Yellowstone but very carefully passed by the fact that it could erupt at any time or what may happen if it did erupt. They actually showed the other volcano erupting. Now if they would take the time to talk about the ongoing earthquakes and how large they are becoming. I’d probably die from shock if they did. Since winters over now I plan on stocking up all the food I can in my motorhome for a fast escape no matter what happens. Of course I only live 400 miles from Yellowstone so alas it would all be a waste if it blew. Be Safe


  6. niebo says:

    “. . . Because no one has ever witnessed one of these systems going off, or has ever survived and eruption to live to talk or write about it.”

    Which is to say, “if you knew the truth . . . you would die before you could share it.” Which is a variation of, “We could tell you, but then we’d have to kill you.”

    So, an eruption of a supervolcano is the ultimate “no-win” situation.


  7. James says:

    Jim, your scenario of fleeing Yellowstone during a Supervolcano brought this image to my mind:


  8. Susan says:

    When I was a teenager in the 70s and began to understand that the USA isn’t in end time prophecy, it was very hard to conceive of America being “gone” or not being a major player on the world stage. I wondered how it could happen but thought it would be way after I was gone. However, the last few years I’ve felt like America would fall quickly–even in a day or a matter of hours. With all that is going on politically and with the increase in natural cataclysms it not only seems feasible it seems imminent! Time to “put away childish things” as the bible says and consider where you stand on matters of faith and what your eternal destiny is. Time may be shorter than we think but even if it’s not, our lives are like a vapor. While this may sound somber, it’s really freeing when you’ve laid everything down to pursue the only thing that will last into eternity–a relationship with God!


    • Congratulations Susan! The truth has set you free! We are in very strange times and I believe that Matthew 24 says much about today… especially where Jesus says this will not yet be the end but the beginning of the birth pangs. Keep looking up. The trials and persecutions grow but God’s love is ever present.


    • Dennis E. says:

      Susan: Dennis E. Here: Regardless how fast America falls, we will still be here.
      Some say the Body of Christ will be raptured or removed before the anti-christ is revealed or before the terrible things to happen on the planet. They could be wrong. It is possible millions of people, to include believers, could die in a nuclear strike or a natural disaster soon. It is not a sin to see trouble coming and prepare. People prepare themselves spiritually, why not physically/materially.


      • Susan says:

        Yes Dennis you are absolutely right. There are so many fronts to prepare for (i.e. Natural disaster, political change, disease, etc.) that it’s hard to know where to begin. One thing is for sure though, we are in for ground shaking change no matter what. We will just have to trust The Lord to lead us through it–whatever it looks like.


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