OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

How hot is lava?

Category: 
Lava

 

 

Measuring the temperature of lava. Photograph by R.L. Christiansen, U.S. Geological Survey, January 9, 1973.

 

The temperatures of lavas vary depending on their chemical composition. Hawaiian lava (basalt) is usually around 1100 C. Volcanoes such as Mt. St. Helens erupt lava that are around 800 C.

 

Source of information:
Francis, P., 1993, Volcanoes: a planetary perspective: Clarendon Press, 443 p.

 

Here is a list of temperatures for the common types of lava:

Rock type Temperature (C) Temperature (F)
Rhyolite 700-900 1292-1652
Dacite 800-1100 1472-2012
Andesite 950-1200 1742-2192
Basalt 1000-1250 1832-2282