Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Obsidian lava flow

Interesting article on how an obsidian lava flow continues to advance and spread, though at a glacial pace, long after the volcanic eruption ends.

I don't have access to the full text of the article, but the link above will take you to the abstract on the journal (Nature Communications) website. Curiously, even without a subscription you can download the four videos in the Supplementary Materials (scroll to the bottom of the page). There is also a nice photo from the article featured on the journal home page.

Here is a link to a popular article about the research accompanied by a nice little explanatory video. I have embedded the video below.

Like many archaeologists, I'm interested in obsidian. It's cool (though not while erupting--see article above), and it makes interesting and sometimes beautiful tools. I'm always looking for more information about its geology because there appear to be undiscovered obsidian sources in Nicaragua, and I would like to find them. Just looking around doesn't seem to be working, so maybe a prediction based on geology or geochemistry would be helpful.

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