Massive Magma Chamber Found Under Yellowstone

By on May 19, 2015
Silex spring is one of the many geothermal areas in Yellowstone National Park. (Credit: Brocken Inaglory/CC BY-SA 3.0)

Silex spring is one of the many geothermal areas in Yellowstone National Park. (Credit: Brocken Inaglory/CC BY-SA 3.0)


Yellowstone National Park is already known for the supervolcano lying dormant under its caldera. But that isn’t the only significant volcanic entity in the park: University of Utah researchers have just discovered a massive reservoir of partially molten rock, containing enough magma to fill the Grand Canyon nearly a dozen times, National Public Radio reported.

The newly discovered magma chamber rests below another, smaller and previously known reservoir. Contrary to popular belief, mineral contents of the chambers are not molten, but instead hot and spongy.

While the discovery does not indicate Yellowstone’s supervolcano is likely to erupt, the additional magma chamber could add to an eruption. However, the U.S. Geological Survey assures that such an eruption is unlikely, as calculated by computer models.

Top image: Silex spring is one of the many geothermal areas in Yellowstone National Park. (Credit: Brocken Inaglory/CC BY-SA 3.0)

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