A Mysterious Island Appeared In The Pacific Ocean, And It Is Here To Stay

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Volcanic eruptions can be terrifying, but they can create beautiful things as well. For example, it is not unusual to see islands formed after an eruption. However, this is an extremely rare event and those islands rarely last for more than a couple of months, as they are directly affected by the waves of the ocean.

It appears that an island in the Pacific is ready to become the exception. The island appeared between December 2014 and January 2015 after a volcanic eruption took place near Tonga. The island is located between two older islands, Hunga Tonga and Hunga Ha’apai.

What can be found on the island?

Scientists paid a visit to the new-born island, and it was just as exciting as you could imagine it. The pictures look otherworldly, and it appears that researchers were just as amazed to set foo there:

“We were all like giddy school children. Most of it is this black gravel, I won’t call it sand – pea sized gravel – and we’re mostly wearing sandals so it’s pretty painful because it gets under your foot. Immediately I kind of noticed it wasn’t quite as flat as it seems from satellite. It’s pretty flat, but there’s still some gradients and the gravels have formed some cool patterns from the wave action,” explained NASA scientist Dan Slayback.

NASA is researching the island because it might offer them some clues related to Mars, as the Red Planet also has volcanic landscapes. It appears that the new island is mostly covered in mud, but vegetation is already making an appearance. Researchers even found a couple of animals there.

“And then there’s clay washing out of the cone. In the satellite images, you see this light-colored material. It’s mud, this light-colored clay mud. It’s very sticky. So even though we’d seen it we didn’t really know what it was, and I’m still a little baffled of where it’s coming from. Because it’s not ash,” added Slayback.


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