independent

Friday 18 April 2014

World's largest volcano the size of Britain discovered off the coast of Japan

The Tamu Massif volcano

SCIENTISTS have proved that the world's largest volcano is on the floor of the Pacific Ocean.

The volcano, 1,000 miles east of Japan and called the Tamu Massif, is the size of Britain and Ireland put together.

It covers 119,000 square miles, rising 2.2 miles above the seabed and delving 18 miles into the Earth's crust. The volcano consists of a vast shield-like dome, which is believed to have formed 144 million years ago when it last erupted.

The epic dimensions of the Tamu Massif almost match the Olympus Mons volcano on Mars, widely regarded the largest recorded.

Tamu Massiff was first found 20 years ago and was thought to consist of a network of volcanoes. But a team of geologists, in the journal 'Nature Geoscience', said they used scanners to prove it was just one. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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