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Volcanoes of the World

on Sun, 04/13/2014 - 17:32
Yesterday Saturday, April 12, 2014, in one of my routine travel through the World Wide Web, I found a fascinating program related to volcanism. The Smithsonian Institution’s Global Volcanism Program (GVP), Department of Mineral Science, National Museum of Natural History is devoted to a better understanding of Earth’s active volcanoes and their eruptions.
The mission of GVP is to document, understand, and disseminate information about global volcanic activity. The GVP has also created “Volcanoes of the World”, a comprehensive database of volcanoes in recorded history and eruptions documented in the last 10,000 years of Earth’s volcanism.  The GVP website presents more than 7,000 reports on volcanic activity, provides access to the baseline data and eruptive histories of volcanoes, and makes available numerous education products to partners, scientists, civil-authorities, and the public.
The GVP website provides also Google Earth (kml files) to display volcano's place marks with links to photos and other information. I felt that an interactive data visualizations about “Volcanoes of the World” could complement the current set of GVP products and it would help to communicate these rich data to the public.
I have created data visualizations and blogged about natural science issues before, such are the cases of meteorites,  the Haiti (2010)i  and Virginia (2011) earthquakes, and  the most recent about the 8.2M Earthquake in Iquique, Chile. Definitively I have also passion for visualizing natural science data, not only public health issues.
Bellow you will find a screenshot of the interactive data visualization “Volcanoes in Recorded History” showing a map of the geographic location and four bar charts displaying some characteristics of 1,550 volcanoes recorded by GVP. 
Click on the above screenshot or here to play with the interactive visualization.
There a total of 1,550 volcanoes recorded in history, and  their geographic location shows the clustering of volcanoes along tectonic plate boundaries, along mounting-building. A pretty similar pattern of earthquakes which are located along fault lines and oceanic trenches, as both volcanoes and earthquakes are driven by forces produced by tectonic movements.
Stratovolcano is the most frequent primary volcano type (597, 38.5%) followed by Shield (132, 8.5%) and Submarine ( 118, 7.6%). Meanwhile the top most dominant rock types are Andesite / Basaltic-Andesite (587, 37.9%) and Basalt / Picro-Basalt (517, 33.4%).
Compressional Continental is the most frequent tectonic setting, there are 766 volcanoes (49.4% of total) with this characteristic. 
Looking at elevations respect the level of the sea, volcanoes have a wide range of elevations, from 6,439.5 meters below to 6,439.5 meters above the level of the sea, having 583 volcanoes (higher frequency, 37.6%) at the level of the sea.
Play your self with the interactive visualization to know more about volcanoes of the world and their characteristics, and find interestin stories behind this data.
As you have noticed, this post has covered just the list of 1,550 volcanoes and their main characteristics but many fascinating information exist from their volcanic activities, which will be the subject for a further blog post.
If your find this blog post interesting or you have any suggestion or recommendation, please drop me an email , leave a comment or tweet me @HlthAnalysis

P.S. The visualization of this article was selected by Tableau Public as Visualization of the Day on April 21st, 2014.

Tableau Public Visualization of the Day, April 21st, 2014


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