Cooling the Lava

Introduction to Volcanoes

Homework 3: Cooling the Lava Exercise


Read “Cooling the Lava” from John McPhee’s 1988 work The Control of Natureand write a response to it. The goal of this assignment is to make connections between what we have discussed in lecture(i.e., how magma is formed and how magmas with different chemical compositions have different physical properties and form in different geological settings) and some real-world examples.

Your response should be approximately 1 page long (with 12 pt font and 1-inch margins) and include the following:

● A summary of the volcanic activity John McPhee describes at Iceland and Hawaii and the geologic processes driving them;

● A summary of the techniques McPhee describes that humans have developed to deal with volcanic activity in Iceland and Hawaii;

● Reflections on aspects of the text you found particularly interesting;

● At least one question you have after reading this chapter.

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