Taupō Volcanic Zone

Extreme Earth Events - 12ESS

Finn LeSueur


Akoranga 12 Mahi Tuatahi

Spend the first 10 minutes working on your New Zealand volcanoes activity from the end of last class.

Ngā Whāinga Ako

  1. Identify the main volcanoes in the Taupo Volcanic Zone
  2. Describe how each of these volcanoes form
  3. Identify the key features of each volcano type

Write the date and ngā whāinga ako in your book

Taupō Volcanic Zone (TVZ)

  • The zone extends from Ruapehu & Ngauruhoe (South-West) to Whakaari in the North-East
  • All formed from the subduction of the Pacific Plate under the Australasian Plate
  • Pacific Plate is stretching the Australian Plate
  • It is spreading \(8mm\) in the East-West direction a year
  • This creates a thin crust (\(16km\) in some places)
  • 10km under the surface a layer of magma (50km wide and 160km long) is present
  • This magma stays here until some of it rises to the surface
  • The magma escapes through old vents or creates new volcanoes
  • The thin crust and layer of magma contribute to high volcanism in the area

Features of the TVZ

  • Cone volcanoes
  • Dome volcanoes
  • Caldera volcanoes
  • Geothermal areas
  • Caldera volcano (super volcano)
    • The huge crater formed by previous eruptions has been partially filled by Lake Taupo


  1. Open Google Classroom and find the Taupō Volcanic Zone task
  2. Follow the GNS URL in the attached document
  3. Pick a volcano, and answer the questions about your volcano using the internet!