Scientists have found a huge hotspot underneath Vermont and New Hampshire that could erupt, but fortunately probably not anytime soon.
Scientists have just discovered a gigantic “mass of warm rock” just sitting underneath the states of New Hampshire and Vermont, and possibly Massachusetts as well. It’s a finding that indicates a massive volcanic eruption could happen in New England at some point, although probably not for millions of years.
Scientists at Rutgers used data from the National Science Foundation’s EarthScope program to examine the structure and evolution of the North American continent, hoping to better understanding earthquakes and volcanoes. It was during this examination that they found “an area of great warmth” that was clearly distinct from surrounding areas.
The warm mass is mostly located under central Vermont as well as western New Hampshire, but it may reach into western Massachusetts. It’s a fascinating discovery that will certainly lead to more attention from scientists in the future hoping to understand the mysterious phenomenon of volcanic activity deep under the Earth’s surface.
“The upwelling we detected is like a hot air balloon, and we infer that something is rising up through the deeper part of our planet under New England,” said lead author Vadim Levin, a geophysicist and professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Rutgers University–New Brunswick. “It is not Yellowstone (National Park)-like, but it’s a distant relative in the sense that something relatively small – no more than a couple hundred miles across – is happening.”