mud volcano

A mud volcano is a small volcano-shaped cone of mud and clay, usually less than 1-2 m tall. These small mud volcanoes are built by a mixture of hot water and fine sediment (mud and clay) that either (1) pours gently from a vent in the ground like a fluid lava flow; or (2) is ejected into the air like a lava fountain by escaping volcanic gas and boiling water. The fine mud and clay typically originates from solid rock--volcanic gases and heat escaping from magma deep below turn groundwater into a hot acidic mixture that chemically changes the rock into mud- and clay-sized fragments.
In volcanic regions, mud volcanoes are usually small volcano-shaped cones of mud, usually less than 1-2 m tall as shown in this image. They are built as mud erupts from a vent, either as as a flowing liquid or ejected into the air. The mud is formed as acid gases rise through the crust, react with rock and turn it into clay. The mud is a mixture of clay and groundwater. The mud volcanoes erupt following pressurization from geothermal steam and gases.
Mud volcanoes can also form in non-volcanic areas. They form where subsurface layers of fluidized sediments, like silt and clay, have been pressurized by tectonic activity, such as at the boundaries of the Earth's crustal plates. They can also form by the accumulation of hydrocarbon gases. The pressurized sediment is forced upward, where it erupts on the earth's surface to form conical mounds of mud or even lakes of mud if the eruption lasts long enough. These mud volcanoes are usually erupted at lower temperature and with less associated gas and acid than mud volcanoes in active volcanic regions.
Photograph by S.R. Brantley in September 1983
The mud volcano shown here is from the Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. It is about 40 cm tall.

Glossary of volcanic terms. - University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. . 2001.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Mud volcano — A series of mud volcanoes in Gobustan, Azerbaijan …   Wikipedia

  • mud volcano — a vent in the earth s surface through which escaping gas and vapor issue, causing mud to boil and occasionally to overflow, forming a conical mound around the vent. [1810 20] * * *       mound of mud heaved up through overlying sediments. The… …   Universalium

  • mud volcano — noun : an orifice in the earth from which gas or vapor issues either through a pool of mud or with the ejection of mud which may accumulate in a conical mound compare air volcano …   Useful english dictionary

  • mud volcano — n. small volcano shaped temporary mound of mud that is formed by geologically excreted liquids and gases around a geyser …   English contemporary dictionary

  • mud volcano — /mʌd vɒlˈkeɪnoʊ/ (say mud vol kaynoh) noun 1. a cone of mud built up by ejection of hot water and mud from a volcanic vent. 2. a soft slurry of mud caused by an escape of gases through a layer of clay; often associated with oil deposits …   Australian English dictionary

  • mud volcano — noun A conical structure formed by the eruption of rock fragments and wet mud along with hot gases. Syn: hervidero, macaluba …   Wiktionary

  • Hingol mud volcano — (Urdu: ہنگول ) are located in Makran District, Balochistan, Pakistan. It is a mud volcano located in Hingol National Park.These are not located on the main road so you will have to consult the locals to guide you to the exact location. A landmark …   Wikipedia

  • mud-cone — mudˈ cone noun A cone formed by a mud volcano • • • Main Entry: ↑mud …   Useful english dictionary

  • Volcano — This article is about the geological feature. For other uses, see Volcano (disambiguation) …   Wikipedia

  • mud — n. 1 wet soft earthy matter. 2 hard ground from the drying of an area of this. 3 what is worthless or polluting. Phrases and idioms: as clear as mud colloq. not at all clear. fling (or sling or throw) mud speak disparagingly or slanderously. here …   Useful english dictionary

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