Olivine gems erupting from Kilauea

“Embedded in the lava still spewing some 130 feet into the air from Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano are green crystals.”

Called olivine, these minerals can turn Hawaiian beaches green, and it appears some of the green gems are raining down upon homes near the eruption or popping up near lava flows.


Thanks to Steven Rowlandson for this link

“This is a pretty good indicator of how deep the source of the magma is,” says Steven.

8 thoughts on “Olivine gems erupting from Kilauea”

  1. Um, it is a kind of asbestos rock

    Serpentine is a similar stone.

    If fibrous we call it asbestos, if more solid in 3D, olivine.

    I’d not be celebrating it filling the air… especially as the very small crystals from volcanoes… It is unlikely to be a health risk as a solid, but I’d worry about weathering.

    BTW, serpentine boulders are common in the hills around me, so it isn’t like I’m paranoid about it. But asbestos fibers in water here is a known natural issue from serpentine weathering.

    Just something to be aware of in volcano country…

    • Olivine – peridote – is the naming mineral of peridotite, which is an “ultramafic” igneous rock that is characteristic of the upper mantle. In ophilite zones, where deep blocks of materials are gouged up and welded onto a continental margin as along the Coast Range in California, peridotite can undergo metamorphosis during which the minerals are restructured into new minerals, typically serpentine minerals such as the various minerals collectively called asbestos. Minerals that are solid at the temperatures and pressures encountered in the mantle tend to be unstable in near surface environments and weather rapidly. The abindance of olivine (peridote) indicates that magma source is very deep and is part of the evidence interpreted to indicate that the Hawaiian Islands form as the Pacific plate moves over a mantle plume.

  2. Well, olivine is the first mineral crystalizing from lava. It shows that Kilawea’s lava is basic (low SiO2 content) and that is partially cooled in a buried magmatic chamber. Unfortunately olivine is unstable at our ambient pressure and temp so it tends to alterate. Hawaii magma is basic because it comes directly from the upper mantle via a plume, generating a hot spot on earth surface.

  3. peles generous..
    oh sorry i trashed your life-here have some shiny beads.
    be handier if something of greater value got ejected;-)

  4. Another little-publicized substance under the earth’s mantle is water– several times more than in the oceans. But it is called Primary Water, and is not saline.

    Frequently such water is available close to the surface where it has been trapped by rock formations. Access to this water, even in the desert, was technology known to Pliny the Elder and practiced by Charlemagne seven centuries later in providing water to his castles constructed on mountanous high ground.

    The technology was lost to the West, perhaps partly because it contradicted scientific dogma on the history of earth’s geology. For our purposes it was rediscovered by a German who would have been a contemporary of our grandfathers. He told 3 boys about it when he took them camping in one of those castles, and one of those boys– become a digger of wells– speaks to us here.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=USLe8gE9Rvw Interview of Dr. Stephan Riess, who rediscovered this ancient process. He began drilling wells in the 30s. He died in the 80s, but he passed his knowledge on to others, and there is a book.

    These wells are being drilled in the US, mid-east & Africa, but not in huge numbers– just like w alternative motors, this is knowledge that is not welcomed by the oligarchs, who are buying up water rights and perhaps don’t want their investment diluted.

    Eighty wells have been dug in Tanzania alone, a few in the US, and a smattering in other countries.

    Please don’t doubt this is real. Here are a few minor mentions in “mainstream” press:
    Scientific American March 2014: Study documents vast quantities of water beneath the earth’s surface. Study confirms “that there is a very, very large amount of water that’s trapped in a really distinct layer in the deep Earth… approaching the sort of mass of water that’s present in all the world’s oceans.”

    BBC News December 2014: Study presented at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union– researchers estimate there is more water locked deep in the earth’s crust than in all its rivers, swamps and lakes together.

    Science March 2002 Japanese researchers report the earth’s lower mantle may store about five times more water than its surface oceans.

    Robert, if you are interested, I have a file on this.

    The myth of water scarcity is part of the same “sustainability” argument as human-caused global warming. The idea is that civilization as currently existing is unsustainable, hence we must transform to global governance w vast changes to our way of life.

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