• 24/06/2024 10:24

The strangest volcano on Earth: scientists have shown that it erupts instead of lava (video)

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Ol Doinyo Lengai Volcano, located in Northern Tanzania, is one of the most unusual volcanoes in the world .

This information was reported by T4, reports URA-Inform.  

Known for its black, oily lava, this volcano stands out from other volcanoes due to its unique eruption temperature of just 540°C. The special thing about Ol Doinyo Lengai is that it erupts carbonate lava called natrocarbonatite, which is a rare phenomenon not only on Earth but also in the solar system.

Scientists have discovered that this volcano contains a high content of carbonate minerals, which allows the lava to remain liquid at significantly lower temperatures than most other volcanoes that emit more common silicate lavas. Due to its low silica content, Ol Doinyo Lengai's lava is extremely viscous, and its eruption is often compared to a stream of black motor oil.

Interestingly, Ol Doinyo Lengai remains active. The latest eruption period began in April 2017 and continued until March 2024. Scientists study this volcano not only because of its unique lava properties, but also because of its geological location in the East African Rift. It is a key tectonic zone and may play a role in the future geological development of the continent.

Ol Doinyo Lengai stands at an altitude of 2962 meters and has two craters, of which only the northern one is active. This volcano's eruptions have attracted the attention of geologists, especially because of its method of ejecting carbon lavas, which may provide clues to geological processes in the Earth's upper mantle.

In 2009, gas samples were collected from Ol Doinyo Lengai, which showed that the composition of these gases is indistinguishable from those released by mid-ocean ridges, although the volcano is located in the interior of the continent. This suggests that carbonaceous lavas form due to the unique conditions beneath the East African Rift.

Research has also shown that the carbon content in the upper mantle that produces carbonatites is very similar to the concentrations that can be found beneath the middle -ocean ridges. This information allows geologists to better understand processes occurring in the mantle that may influence volcanic activity around the world.