Showing posts from April, 2016

Volcanoes in Space!


Volcanoes in Space! Sounds awesome right? Volcanic activity is one of the major forces that shape the surfaces of planetary bodies, along with meteorite impacts, tectonics (deformation of the planets crust) and action by an atmosphere (wind, water etc). Aren’t there lots of volcanoes on Earth that we need to understand? Why yes, there are, and studying volcanoes on other planets helps us understand Earth volcanoes. One of the reasons I love studying things not on Earth is that they help us question our own basic understanding and assumptions about how things work on Earth. Science is a process, our understanding comes from constantly asking questions and seeking new sources of evidence and ways to test our ideas. The first step to understanding natural processes, such as volcanic eruptions, is we first have to make a few observations and come up with a really simple model of what is happening. That lava flow came out of the ground, therefore lava comes from underground. Then…