BRINGING THE VOLCANO TO CENTRAL NY: NATURAL-SCALE BASALTIC LAVA FLOW DEMONSTRATIONS FOR GEOSCIENCE STUDENTS
A wide range of behaviors and morphologies develop as a result of ispecific experimental conditions including variations in slope (0-25°), type of surface (dry or wet sand, rough or smooth material, ice, etc.), and effusion rate. Typically multiple flows are made under slightly different conditions during each event to illustrate how different variables affect flow behavior. Features formed on dry sand include: ropey, toey, sheet-like, tube-fed and inflated pahoehoe flows with complex levees, folds and collapse features. Interactions with water, ice or wet sand create frothy, fragmented flows with large bubbles (“limu o’Pele”) created by escaping water vapor. Topics explored with students vary with background but include solid vs liquid states, cooling of materials, effusive vs explosive eruptions, glass vs rock, rheology (viscous to Bingham), crystallization from melts, etc. Perhaps one of the most impressive lessons from these events is the potential to galvanize student engagement and interest with real lava.