Types of Volcanoes

Key Questions

  • There are actually three types of volcanoes namely shield, cinder and composite cones.

    The shield cone looks like an inverted semi-sphere. This type of volcano does not burst out violently. Instead, it slowly expels rivers of lava for hundreds of meters, One good example of it is Mauna Loa, located in the volcanic islands of Hawaii. This volcano only slowly flows lava from its crater, and forms so called "ropes of cooled lava".

    The cinder type looks like a medium-sized cone inverted. Violent eruptions may occur, but in rarity due to its small crater. And add that feature that it lacks "branches" to expel small rivers of lava. One example of that is Taal Volcano, a small volcano located in an island at Batangas, Philippines.

    The composite cone is the famous of all, bearing the shape of a real cone (but not always perfect). In this type, more violent eruptions are more possible, due to its size and plenty of " branches" in its sides. To name a few, we have Pinatubo, St. Helens, Vesuvius, Fuji, Krakatoa, and scores of others.

    I hope you were enlightened. Please beep me back for other concerns.

    Thank you!

  • Answer:

    Higher viscosities will lead to less flow, and therefore higher peaks on smaller bases. The general conical shape will not change.


    Viscosity is the resistance of magma to flow when subjected to a force. In general, the viscosity of magma increases as the silica content increases from basalt to rhyolite. http://www.gso.uri.edu/lava/MagmaProperties/properties.html