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Published on May 22, 2010
Michio Kaku explains some of the science behind the prediction of volcanoes and if the eruptions are ever going to end. The Icelandic eruption was a perfect storm, a combination of wind and ice conditions that has turned an ordinary eruption into a crisis. Last month, the same volcano erupted harmlessly. But last week, magma found a second pathway to the surface, this time beneath a glacier. When hot magma touched ice, it instantly created a burst of steam and produced glassified silicates. The sudden expansion of steam created a colossal explosion that sent billowing clouds of glassified silica ash three to five miles into the air over Europe. The ongoing eruptions of the volcano, which continue unabated, are caused by a series of steam explosions as magma continues to encounter glacial ice.