cod. 1005858

Academic year 2018/19
2° year of course - Second semester
Academic discipline
Geochimica e vulcanologia (GEO/08)
Discipline mineralogiche, petrografiche e geochimiche
Type of training activity
72 hours
of face-to-face activities
6 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Learning objectives

The aim of the course is to provide to the student the basic knowledge of Volcanology for understanding the volcanic deposits and relate them with the eruptive processes.


Knowledge learned in the courses of Mineralogy, Geochemistry and Petrography

Course unit content

1.Distribution of volcanic activity in relation to tectonics. Volcanoes of divergent margins (lithosphere with oceanic crust, lithosphere with continental crust). Volcanoes of convergent margins (subduction under oceanic crust, subduction under continental crust). Intraplate volcanoes (in oceanic and continental environment). The Italian volcanic provinces.

2. The magma
Genesis and processes of ascent of the magma from the deep mantle and in the crust. Main physical and chemical characteristics of magmas.

3. Volcanic eruptions and structures
Effusive eruptions. Central volcanoes and linear volcanoes. Composite volcanoes, monogenic volcanoes, shield volcanoes, domes, calderas, basaltic plateaux. Explosive eruptions; magmatic, phreatomagmatic, and phreatic. Classification of eruptions

4. The products of effusive eruptions
Subaerial and submarine lava flows. Morphologies of lava flows
5. The products of explosive eruptions
Pyroclastic products: classification and genesis
6. Pyroclastic deposits
Fall deposits: transport mechanisms and deposition. Distribution and thickness of the deposits. Structures of the layers. Dimensional parameters. Components.
Pyroclastic flow deposits: types and textural characteristics of deposits. Effects of temperature. Ignimbrites. Post-depositional processes.
Pyroclastic surge deposits. Types and textural characteristics. Sin- and post-depositional structures. Characteristics of the different facies.

7. Vulcanoclastic flows and deposits
Debris flows, hyperconcentrated flows and their genesis. Features of the deposits

8. Volcanic risk
The volcanic risk. Monitoring of active volcanoes: monitoring, seismic, geochemical, geomorphological techniques. Prevention and maps of volcanic risk. Forecasts of eruptions. The sin- and post-eruptive volcanic risk

9. Distribution of active volcanism in Italy
The volcanoes of the Roman province and Campania, the Aeolian islands, Mount Etna
10. Multi-day field trip

Full programme



GIACOMELLI L.. & SCANDONE R. : Vulcani e Eruzioni. Pitagora Editrice. Bologna. 2002
CAS R.A.F. & WRIGHT J.V.: Volcanic Successions. Modern and ancient. Allen & Unwin, London 1987.

FISHER R.V. & SCHMINCKE H.U. : Pyroclastic rocks. Springer-Verlag, Berlin 1984.

WILLIAMS H. and MCBIRNEY A.R.: Volcanology. Freeman, Cooper & Co., San Francisco 1979.

MAC DONALD G.A.: Volcanoes. Prentice-Hall, Inc. 1972.

SCANDONE R. & GIACOMELLI L. : Vulcanologia. Liguori editore, Napoli 2002

SIGURDSON H. ed. : Encyclopedia of VOLCANOES. Academic Press, 2000

GREEN J; and SHORT N.M. eds.: Volcanic landforms and surface features. Springer-Verlag,1971.

Teaching methods

lectures on basic theoretical topics, exercises with lithologies of volcanic rocks and field lessons.

Assessment methods and criteria

Oral exam with verification of the theoretical knowledge learned, their application to real cases and verification of the logical-deductive skills

Other information