Exhibits > Why
Geysers Erupt > Predicting
THE BEST GUESS
A geyser is never early or late and a prediction is simply a good
guess of when an eruption might occur. In most cases, predictions
are based on information and observations of previous intervals
and the length, size, and characteristics of past eruptions.
It is impossible to predict the eruption time of most geysers
because complex interactions take place between constantly changing
factors. These include earthquakes, ongoing processes within underground
channels, and fluctuations in a system’s water or heat supply.
Most geysers share conduits with other hot springs or geysers. At
the least, a predictable geyser is separate from other features
or is only connected to a feature that also has very steady activity.
Through the years, observation has revealed that certain geysers
have pre-eruption characteristics that provide clues to predict
an eruption time. However, these characteristics, not to mention
the eruption itself, may change at any time!
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