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There is some intriguing analysis that has just been released about a massive swarm of earthquakes that occurred in Antarctica in 2020.
A ‘swarm’ of 85,000 earthquakes in Antarctica that lasted about six months in 2020 was triggered by magma from an underwater volcano, a new study says.
The swarm occurred at Orca Seamount, a deep-sea volcano near King George Island in Antarctica, in the Bransfield Strait, which has been inactive for ‘a long time’.
The end product of the calculations which reproduced the processes of friction, heat transport and liquid water behaviour revealed there has to be another source of energy down there.
A mantle plume fits the bill.
This mantle plume — some of which are known as supervolcanos — pumps out some 200 milliwatts of energy per square meter.
The background heating from beneath the Earth in non-geologically active areas is about 40 to 60 milliwatts.
The one under Antarctica appears to be roughly in the same league, at up to 150 milliwatts.
Any hotter and the simulations show the ice sheet melting too much to fit observations — except for one spot near the Ross Sea.
Intense flows of water have been seen here. The simulations needed up to 180 milliwatts of energy to produce similar results.
And those worried about climate extinction might like to reflect on the fact that the last time a super-volcano erupted, it almost wiped-out our species.