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Types of Volcanoes

Home | Lava Rock Types | Stages of Volcanic Activity

The different types of volcanoes depend on the volcano's eruptions. These types vary in structure.

Cinder Cones

Cinder cone volcanoes are formed from explosive eruptions. Because air from the violent eruption, they cool before they hit the ground. Any tiny, fine-grained rock is then blown away by winds. The coarser rock fragments are left behind in a cone shaped pile, which can be hundreds of meters tall.

Shield Volcanoes

Formed by frequent, quiet eruptions, shield volcanoes are much larger in width than in height. As smooth lava flows build up, a dome shape is formed. Shield volcanoes usually change shape when eruptions become explosive late in the life of the volcano.

Composite Volcanoes

Composite volcanoes are very large and are formed from alternating explosive eruptions and quiet eruptions. This results in layer of ejected material covered by the smooth lava flows. Composite volcanoes are usually symmetrical in shape and can be as high as several kilometers.



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Copyright 2007 Trey Tombari
Last updated March 15