One of the biggest challenges in volcanic hazard assessment is to understand how and why eruptive style changes within the same eruptive period or even from one eruption to the next at a given volcano. This review evaluates the competing processes that lead to explosive and effusive eruptions of silicic magmas. Eruptive style depends on a set of feedback involving interrelated magmatic properties and processes. Foremost of these are magma viscosity, gas loss and external properties such as conduit geometry. Ultimately, these parameters control the speed at which magmas ascend, decompress and outgas en route to the surface, and thus determine eruptive style and evolution.
- Explosive eruptions
- Effusive eruptions