Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Volcano in Manawatū due to erupt at lunchtime tomorrow

March 10, 2014

Volcano due to erupt at lunchtime tomorrow

Massey University’s Volcanic Risk Solutions team have predicted a volcanic eruption in Manawatū tomorrow – right down to the minute.

Team members are staging a volcanic eruption in the old campus boiler room with a machine built to better understand volcanic flows and assist with hazard planning.

Professor Shane Cronin and Dr Gert Lube are leading the world-first research project that is investigating the physical properties of pyroclastic flows.

Pyroclastic flows are a hot mixture of gas and ash particles that are emitted during a volcanic eruption.

“They spread a long way and are probably the deadliest process of a volcano,” Professor Cronin says. “At the moment, when we try to map out the destruction zones and hazard zones, we often underestimate because the physical models we have to describe them are inadequate.”

The 15m tall simulator will re-create the velocities and physics present inside a pyroclastic flow.

The first test of the simulator, last year, used polystyrene balls but tomorrow the team will use 2000-year-old volcanic material taken from Lake Taupo to closely mimic what actually happens when a volcano erupts. Sensors and cameras will record the flows.

“We can’t measure these things in the field, because we can’t switch a volcano on and off or tell it to produce the same sized eruption in the same place, so we needed to build something that could simulate the process on a scale that is useful.”

The project has generated strong international interest. Among those at tomorrow's simulation will be United States volcanologist Dr Greg Valentine from Buffalo University in New York.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Scoop Business: Fletcher To Close Its Christchurch Insulation Plant, Cut 29 Jobs

Fletcher Building, New Zealand’s largest listed company, will close its Christchurch insulation factory, as it consolidates its Tasman Insulations operations in a “highly competitive market”. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Novartis Adds Nine New Treatments Under Pharmac Deal

Novartis New Zealand, the local unit of the global pharmaceuticals firm, has added nine new treatments in a far-ranging agreement with government drug buying agency, Pharmac. More>>

ALSO:

Crown Accounts: English Wary On Tax Take, Could Threaten Surplus

Finance Minister Bill English is warning the tax take may come in below forecast in the current financial year, as figures released today confirm it was short by nearly $1 billion in the year to June 30 and English warned of the potential impact of slumping receipts from agricultural exports. More>>

ALSO:

Auckland Outage: Power Mostly Restored Overnight

Vector wishes to advise that all but 324 customers have been restored overnight. These customers are spread throughout the network in small pockets. The main St Johns feeder was restored around midnight allowing most of the customers in all affected areas to have power this morning. More>>

ALSO:

Half Empty: Dairy Prices Drop To Lowest Since August 2009

Dairy product prices fell to the lowest level in more than five years in the latest GlobalDairyTrade auction, led by declines in butter milk powder and whole milk powder. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand

Mosh Social Media
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news