Stepping on Lava

Have you ever wondered what really happens when you step on molten lava? Neuroscientist Alex Rivest decided to find out on a recent vacation to Kilauea, Hawaii, when his tour guide offered to step onto a pool of the 700°C to 1,200°C molten rock. Rivest says, “While this may not be surprising (it is liquid rock), I think that many people think of lava as more of a hot-watery-like substance. You would never fall into a lava lake the way you would a swimming pool, the molten rock is much more dense, so you would simply land on it, sink a little, and be burned.” Continue reading for the video and more information.

The Kilauea volcanoes have continuously erupted since 1983, and is thought to be 300,000 to 600,000 years old. Rivest adds, “At certain locations, and only under proper guidance and safety procedures, you can visit some of the lava fronts. It is truly one of the most amazing things to witness.”

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