The eruption of an undersea volcano in Japan has created a new island 200 kilometers from the capital Tokyo.
The formation of the new 100-meter-diameter island, added to Japan’s Ogasawa island chain in the western Pacific, began last month with volcanic eruptions every few minutes.
A helicopter of the Japan Meteorological Institute flying a reconnaissance flight over the island captured images of dense smoke and lava rising 50 meters upwards accompanied by eruptions every one to two minutes.
According to BBC Turkish, Fukashi Maeno from the University of Tokyo’s earthquake research institute said he saw rocks thrown into the air by the explosion and brown pumice stones floating in the sea.
Could expand in size
Maeno says the area has been experiencing volcanic activity since July last year. It is thought that if the volcano under the new island continues to erupt, the size of the island could expand.
Could be permanent
In Japan, experts occasionally witness the disappearance of islands. In 2018, the island of Esanbe Hanakita Kojima, 500 meters off the northern island of Hokkaido, appeared to have quietly disappeared.
Prof. Setsuya Nakada of the University of Tokyo’s Earthquake Research Institute said that parts of the island already covered in lava could remain ‘forever’.