Tapo Volcanic Zone Essay

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Taupo Volcanic Zone

The Taupo Volcanic Zone is a highly active volcanic region situated in the central part of the North Island in New Zealand. The Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ) stretches from Ohakune in the south of the Bay of Plenty to White Island in the north. It is estimated that the Earth’s crust below the Taupo Volcanic Zone may possibly be as small as 16 kilometers think and currently moves approximately 8mm per year. The TVZ is named after Lake Taupo, the caldera of the formaly largest volcano in the zone. The region we see today is formed from a combination of internal and external processes that shape and form the volcanic region. There are five main volcanic centers in the Taupo region, which are Mt Ruapehu, Mt Ngauruhoe, Mt Tongariro, Lake Taupo Volcanic Centre and Okayaina Volcanic Centre or Mt Tarawera. In the last 5,000 years the Taupo Caldera has been recorded as the most violent eruption
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In it’s time is has shown a random spell of large and small eruption. This ‘random’ pattern is common with all the rhyolite volcanoes situated in the central North Island of New Zealand. The biggest eruption in Taupo history occurred 26,500 years ago. The Oruanui eruption produced 300 km³ of ignimbrite, 500 km³ of pumice and ash fall. The Oruanui eruption is thought to have first formed the Taupo caldera (later expanded by second eruption) however evidence of the influence of lake water is found in the layers of tephra dated to the time of eruption, giving evidence of a large lake present before the eruption which in turn would have weakened the ground underneath the volcano which consequently effected the formation of the Taupo Caldera. The ignimbrite from the Oruanui eruption is found in the rock around Taupo showing layers of the emitted material in layers in the rock. Fine ash from the eruption has been found throughout New Zealand and even in many offshore locations such as the Chatham

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