Major Nicaraguan Volcano Ends A Century of Silence

An iconic Nicaraguan volcano erupts for the first time in over a century. How did the blast compare to the one that destroyed the country’s capital in 1605?

[DIGEST: ScienceAlert, National Geographic, Wired, Daily Mail]

Nicaragua’s iconic Momotombo volcano has leapt back into action, emitting a significant blast after 110 years of inactivity. In what is known as a strombolian eruption, radiant lava burst from the 4,254-foot peak on December 2, along with a majestic plume of dark ash that rose to an altitude of 8,000 feet.

No one was hurt at this popular tourist site, which lies next to Lake Managua. The hot rock and ash that drifted from the volcano traveled northwest toward parts of the region that are only sparsely populated. Nevertheless, local schools were closed as a precaution. Meanwhile, a live INETER webcam shows that Momotombo has since quieted down.

Check out this spectacular aerial video of the eruption that the guitarist from the San Francisco rock group Gold Minor captured through an airplane window: 

Also, here is a close-up shot of Momotombo emitting the kind of short blasts of lava that are typical of a strombolian eruption.

How long before Momotombo erupts again is anybody’s guess. Precise answers continue to elude scientists as to why volcanoes may follow erratic patterns of activity, and why the once-active Momotombo, in particular, went offline for more than a century. Nevertheless, there are signs that the volcano may have been building up to 

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