Fundamentals of Physical Geography

2nd Edition
James Petersen
ISBN: 9781133606536



Fundamentals of Physical Geography

2nd Edition
James Petersen
ISBN: 9781133606536
Textbook Problem


FIGURE 11.25 The four basic types of volcanoes are (a) shield volcano, (b) cinder cone, (c) composite cone, also known as stratovolcano, and (d) plug dome.

What are the key differences in the shapes of these volcanoes?

To determine

The key differences in the shapes of the volcanoes in the accompanying image.


Volcanism is a process of extrusion of rock materials from the Earth’s interior to outside, which results in the formation of various surface terrains. The four basic types of volcanoes are shield volcanoes, cinder cones, composite volcanoes, and plug domes.

Shield volcanoes: Shield volcanoes are broad gently sloping dome-shaped cones formed by the accumulation of hot and fluid basaltic lava flow layers that flow long distance before solidifying. The shape of the shield volcano resembles a warrior shield resting on the Earth’s surface.

These volcanoes emit hot mafic lava, tephra, occasionally volcanic gases, and steam eject fountains of molten lava for a few hundred meters into the atmosphere. These volcanoes contain a central vent and magma sometimes erupts from the fissures along the flanks of the volcano known as flank eruption. Example: Hawaiian shield volcanoes.

Cinder cones: Cinder cones have distinctive, steep, and straight sides with a crater at the top of the cone shaped hill and a central vent. Cinder cones are the smallest type of volcanoes, which are typically hundred meters high. These consist of mostly gravel-sized pyroclastics. Gas charged eruptions produce molten lava and solid pyroclastic fragments into atmosphere, which accumulate around the vents as a large pile of tephra.

The pyroclastics from each burst fall and cascade down the sides to build an internally layered volcanic cones...

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