News & Events
Scientists repeat physical phenomena with lava in the laboratory
- October 10, 2019
- Posted by: Wiley M. Wagner
- Category: Science
Lava is one of the most amazing substances on the planet whose behavior is not completely amenable to rationalization and logical explanation. Faced with water – which happens all the time in natural nature – lava does not always react the same way. The answer to the question of what causes its different behavior in contact with water and experts from the University of Buffalo in the USA are trying to find out, based on the laboratory lava itself. In order to deepen their understanding of physics in the context of the interconversion of lava and its contact with large volumes of water, experts subjected it to several experiments, with very amazing results!
Specialists tried to study the difference in the behavior of lava when different volumes of water were injected into it at different speeds and frequencies. First, they created their own laboratory lava with a volume of 38 liters by melting basalt stones in a high-induction furnace (where it reached a temperature of 1,200 degrees Celsius), and then placed its individual volumes in 12 different insulated metal boxes, from 20 to 46 cm in height. As for water, scientists poured different volumes of water with an infusion depth frequency of 6 to 30 feet per second.
The results showed that the lava in those boxes where they poured water quickly and a lot, was immediately released several meters into the air, while a lower infusion frequency formed only a small vapor and bubbles on the surface of the lava. They partly explain this by the fact that slowly flowing water manages to form something like a protective film on the outer layer of the lava, where it then evaporates – which does not allow the boiling process to continue.
Unlike faster and more powerful infusions of water. In general, the results of this experiment go beyond the scope of a simple study of the physics of lava and can be very useful for determining the limit value of the danger of ignition and explosion of lava in those regions where it often flows out – to provide more urgent and timely measures to save the lives of civilians in those regions.