Scientists discover 'staggeringly large amount' of water under volcano

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A stunning discovery has been made about a currently inactive volcano in South America.

New Scientist reports that an international team of researchers has determined that a huge reservoir containing water and some magma likely exists underneath Bolivia's Uturuncu volcano.

Jon Blundy, one of the authors of a resulting study is quoted as saying about the water content, "It's probably somewhere between Lake Superior and Lake Huron. It's a staggeringly large amount."

Researchers had been studying this area known as the Altiplano-Puna magma body, which is more than nine miles underneath the volcano because, as New Scientist states, it "...slows down seismic waves and conducts electricity, unlike surrounding magma."

So they conducted experiments on local rock samples to determine the conditions necessary for such an anomaly to occur.

Based on the results, the team concluded a likely presence of about 8 to 10 percent of water which would translate to a large, lake-like body.

As such, the study states that other large amounts of subterranean water "...could be a common feature of active continental arcs and may illustrate a key step in the structure and growth of the continental crust."

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