KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii (AP) - A new study of magma from Hawaii's Kilauea volcano shows why some eruptions are more explosive than others.
West Hawaii Today says the research for the study was done by University of Hawaii professor Bruce Houghton, Hawaii Volcano Observatory's Don Swanson and scientists from the University of Cambridge. The study was recently published in the journal Nature Geoscience.
Houghton and his colleagues examined lava from 25 Kilauea eruptions over the past 600 years.
Researchers found tiny portions of molten rock trapped in crystals in the cooled lava.
Houghton says the molten rock tries to reach conditions on the outside, causing some gases to leak.
He says scientists analyzing the crystals found that the amount of gas leakage is proportional to the speed molten rock comes to the surface.