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Shield volcanoes have many special features that set it apart from the other volcanoes in the world. Somethings that make them different is the volcanoes shape, lava, and even the explosion is different from many other volcanoes. These volcanoes are prevalent in many countries and has many effects on neighboring cities and towns near it.
There are shield volcanoes all around the world, from Hawaii to Kenya. These volcanoes are formed by slow flowing basaltic lava, because of the way that the volcano is formed, it has gently sloping sides. It also has an upwardly convex shape, with a flat top, and the width is usually twenty times longer than it is high. These characteristics causes the shape of the volcano resembles a shield and are are often found at constructive boundaries. Containing cinder cones on the back of the volcano, these cones release lava, therefore causing the volcano’s lava to flow in many different directions which is different from most other volcanoes.
These volcanoes explode frequently due to their high magma supply. The explosions are usually beautiful appearing to look like red fountains and long-flowing rivers. The explosions are extremely silent and are often non-explosive, the damage is usually through the lava flowing into nearby cities. The lavas from these volcanoes can go to such great lengths because of lava tubes within volcanoes that are seemingly caves. These parts of the volcano harden the lava and forms it into a layer that insulates and it allows the lava to travel further. The lavas can even reach waters causing huge clouds of ash, steam and rock to be created. These lavas can flow into cities and even into bodies of waters surrounding it. This is what makes this volcano so unique to many other volcanoes. The lava has the ability to travel for months before it cools off!
These volcanoes are characterized as the largest volcanoes on the planet. The largest volcano is the Mauna Loa. This volcano is so large that it takes up over half of Hawaii’s surface area. Shield volcanoes are much larger than any other type of volcano due the ways they are formed.
Speaking about many eruptions another volcano in Hawaii, the Kīlauea. This volcano is the most active volcano in the world. This volcano has had 61 recorded eruptions since 1983. Shield volcanoes are leading in the most eruptions over any other volcano type.
Shield volcanoes are a unique type of volcano. These types of volcanoes can grow to extreme sizes that tower over other types of volcanoes like the stratovolcano. It’s lavas also travel extreme distances which can be a serious issue for the towns and cities surrounding these mammoths. These volcanoes are extremely beautiful however, from the beautiful shape that closely resembles a shield, to its beautiful fountain like eruptions, and river flowing lavas these volcanoes are a spectacle as long as you’re a safe distance away from its elongated flows of lava.
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