Background on Geysers
Geysers, also known as natural hot water springs, are each unique and different in their own way. Geyser activity is characterized by violent and intermittent water discharges (eruptions) directly from the Earth's surface often mixed with steam. But, why do geysers erupt like this? Geyser activity only appears on areas with certain specific geological characteristics that could cause these geyser eruptions.
Although geysers are different from each other, they share certain common characteristics. Before we can learn why geysers erupt, we need to cover the basic parts of any geyser’s system. They are:
- a water supply
- a heat source
- a plumbing system
A water supply must be abundant for geysers to exist. Geysers are usually located near rivers or lakes where there is plenty of water. This water supply can also come from the melting of snow or of course, rain.
The heat source needed for geysers to exist comes from the Earth in the form of geothermal energy. Geysers are all located in areas where there is volcanic activity. The enormous amount of energy present in hot volcanic magma is responsible for heating up the water of geysers.
The plumbing system (fissures, channels, cracks, and spaces existent in the ground beneath the geyser basin) is crucial for a geyser to exist. The plumbing system must have certain specific characteristics that will allow water to be thrown violently into air.