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The still active Yellowstone supervolcano, located in Yellowstone National Park in northwestern Wyoming, formed some 640,000 years ago. Its caldera –a large cauldron-like depression that forms when a volcano erupts and collapses–pictured here, measures 30 miles x 45 miles wide.
December 1, 2022
When Ross Maguire was a postdoctoral researcher at Michigan State University, he wanted to study the volume and distribution of molten magma underneath the Yellowstone volcano. Using a method called seismic tomography, he was able to create images showing where the magma was located, but they were not crystal clear. Using a method known as waveform tomography developed by the late MSU researcher Min Chen, Maguire et. al. were able to see that twice that amount of magma exists within Yellowstone’s magmatic system.

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