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Ready to rate the eruption you just saw? Here's what to do:
  1. To learn more about the Volcanic Explosivity Index (VEI), click on each column heading.

  2. Then read a description of the eruption you saw and give it a VEI number.

Volcanic Explosivity Index (VEI)
Description Volume of
Ejected
Material
Plume
Height
Eruption
Type
Duration Total
Eruptions
Given
this VEI
Example VEI
Non-
Explosive
variable <100m Hawaiian variable 699 Kilauea
(1983 to
present)
0
Small <.001 km3 100-
1000m
Hawaiian/
Strombolian
<1 hr 845 Nyiragongo
(1982)
1
Moderate .001-.01 km3 1-5km Strombolian/
Vulcanian
1-6 hrs 3477 Colima
(1991)
2
Moderate/
Large
.01-.1 km3 3-15km Vulcanian/
Plinian
1-12 hrs. 869 Galeras
(1924)
3
Large .1-1 km3 10-25km Vulcanian/
Plinian
1-12 hrs. 278 Sakura-Jima
(1914)
4
Very
Large
1-10 km3 >25 km Plinian/
Ultra-Plinian
6-12 hrs. 84 Villarrica
(1810)
5
Very
Large
10-100 km3 >25 km Plinian/
Ultra-Plinian
>12 hrs. 39 Vesuvius
(79 AD)
6
Very
Large
100-1000 km3 >25 km Ultra-Plinian >12 hrs. 4 Tambora
(1812)
7
Very
Large
>1,000 km3 >25 km Ultra-Plinian >12 hrs. 0 Yellowstone
Caldera
(2 million
years ago)
8


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