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Volcanic spatter cones

Volcanic spatter cones

E390/0325

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Credit

BERNHARD EDMAIER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY BERNHARD EDMAIER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Volcanic spatter cones. Aerial photograph of spatter cones on the summit of the active volcano Ol Doinyo Lengai, or Mountain of God. These cones (also known as hornitos) are mounds of hardened lava formed when a small eruption occurs. The molten lava fountains congeal quickly as they hit the crater, forming these cone shapes. Ol Doinyo Lengai produces natrocarbonatitic lava (white), rich in sodium and carbonates. The lava emerges from the crater at between 500 and 590 degrees Celsius, the coolest lava of any known active volcano. Ol Doinyo Lengai is in the Rift Valley in northern Tanzania.

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