Submarine Volcano Erupts Off Tonga

[googlemap lat=”-20.730428476781324″ lng=”-175.27862548828125″ width=”500px” height=”300px” zoom=”8″ type=”G_SATELLITE_MAP”]Tonga[/googlemap]

From the Times Online….

Scientists are on their way to the site of a large undersea volcano that has been erupting for days near Tonga, sending columns of smoke and ash thousands of feet into the sky above the Pacific Ocean. The spectacular plumes are erupting from the ocean about six or seven miles (10 – 12 km) off the coast of the main island of Tongatapu, near the low-lying twin volcanic islands of Hunga Tonga and Hunga Ha’apai. The eruption can be seen clearly from the capital, Nuku’alofa, although residents only reported seeing columns of smoke rising from the sea on Wednesday, two days after it is believed to have begun. Locals described it as a cloud of ash visible above the waterfront. Nuku’alofa resident Mary Fonua said the eruption appeared to have increased in size during Wednesday.

Dr. M (1801 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Executive Director of the Lousiana University Marine Consortium. He has conducted deep-sea research for 20 years and published over 50 papers in the area. He has participated in and led dozens of oceanographic expeditions taken him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses on how energy drives the biology of marine invertebrates from individuals to ecosystems, specifically, seeking to uncover how organisms are adapted to different levels of carbon availability, i.e. food, and how this determines the kinds and number of species in different parts of the oceans. Additionally, Craig is obsessed with the size of things. Sometimes this translated into actually scientific research. Craig’s research has been featured on National Public Radio, Discovery Channel, Fox News, National Geographic and ABC News. In addition to his scientific research, Craig also advocates the need for scientists to connect with the public and is the founder and chief editor of the acclaimed Deep-Sea News (, a popular ocean-themed blog that has won numerous awards. His writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.

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