Supervolcano Eruption Fears

We have some scary geophysical news this week. This sums it up –


From the Flying Cuttlefish blog –

. . . and . . .


Yellowstone supervolcano is showing signs of STRAIN

The Daily Mail [UK] – Yellowstone supervolcano is showing signs of STRAIN: Experts measure subtle changes caused by magma deep beneath the surface

  • Scientists based in Colorado can measure the strain put on volcanoes in the US
  • They detected molten rock beneath the surface of Yellowstone National Park
  • Their discovery is not dangerous, and technologies allow them to track it closely
  • The researchers analyze the effects of slight environmental shifts on volcanoes


USGS – A recent “hiccup” in deformation of the Norris Geyser Basin

Not Yellowstone – but NW is shaking

This was sent in – it is of interest to Yellowstone quake watchers ….

I’m watching the Rattlesnake Ridge near Yakima, Washington right now.  Estimated 4-10 million cubic yards of hillside slipping at 1.6 feet/week.  There is highway below and the Yakima River.  A lady is giving daily updates with pictures.

Watch “Rattlesnake Ridge Update January 21, 2018.” on u tube….

What the heck is going on??

SEE ALSO – Watching Mount St Helens

Huge amounts of magma churning 124 miles below New England

Mount St. Helens is Shivering


A recent swarm of more than 120 earthquakes near Mount St. Helens — all below a magnitude 0.5 comes as a reminder to scientists and residents alike that while the volcano has been relatively “well-behaved” recently, another eruption is inevitable. Our news partners at the Columbian recently got in touch with scientists who study, in part, the volcano and the land beneath it. To them, these quakes are a window into what’s going on underground, and can be helpful for directing further research. “Each of these little earthquakes is a clue and a reminder we are marching toward an eruption someday,” said Weston Thelen, a U.S. Geological Survey seismologist with the Cascades Volcano Observatory in Vancouver, as reported in the Columbian.


WiredA Swarm of Earthquakes Shakes Mount St. Helens

Continental Crack Story (true?) – UPDATE: EGADS!!

We cannot verify this study mentioned – FC

Bended Reality – Scientists Found a 1,700 Mile Crack Across the USA. Here’s What You Need to Know

LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) – In Nov 1981, a study was published that rocked the scientific world, and sparked concern in FEMA circles, in which a 1,700 mile “Crack Across America” was discovered. Worse yet, this crack cuts through the New Madrid Seismic Zone, where in 1811 and 1812 three giant earthquakes devastatingly struck the center of America. Scientists have been struggling, since then, to answer the question of what risk this mega feature may pose to our heartland today. Recently, and less known, is a study from an independent geologic research set of work [2], that has identified a possible second “Crack Through America” that crosses into and through the same volatile New Madrid Seismic Zone. . .  (more)


Reader, Mike L. sent a link to the NASA funded Report –

Structure of the midcontinent basement. Topography, gravity, seismic, and remote sensing

(IE worked better than Mozilla browser)

8.4 MB PDF of the whole thing –

“Some 600,000 discrete Bouguer gravity estimates of the continental United States were spatially filtered to produce a continuous tone image. The filtered data were also digitally painted in color coded form onto a shaded relief map. The resultant image is a colored shaded relief map where the hue and saturation of a given image element is controlled by the value of the Bouguer anomaly. Major structural features (e.g., midcontinent gravity high) are readily discernible in these data, as are a number of subtle and previously unrecognized features. A linear gravity low that is approximately 120 to 150 km wide extends from southeastern Nebraska, at a break in the midcontinent gravity high, through the Ozark Plateau, and across the Mississippi embayment. The low is also aligned with the Lewis and Clark lineament (Montana to Washington), forming a linear feature of approximately 2800 km in length. In southeastern Missouri the gravity low has an amplitude of 30 milligals, a value that is too high to be explained by simple valley fill by sedimentary rocks.”






Here’s another paper from the U of Ill. -It has good maps.
The Midcontinent exposed: Precambrian basement topography, and fault-and-fold zones, within the cratonic platform of the United States


(That white blob is Lake Michigan up at the top right.)