Guest Post: Volcanos, by Jon Chad

I’m super excited that Fist Second is releasing a new educational  science comics series.

Below you will find some information about the Volcanos (John Chad, Fall 2016) book.

The world is frozen in a new ice age, and three siblings travel with their mentor on a search for material to burn for warmth, an increasingly desperate effort to keep their tribe alive. Aurora, the oldest of the siblings, uncovers a forgotten bit of natural history-forces of nature known as volcanoes. As she learns more about volcano types, what they erupt, and how strong those eruptions can be, Aurora becomes convinced that volcanoes can provide the heat and life to help her tribe survive.  First Second will be publishing Volcanos as part of the all new Science Comics series in fall 2016.

demo page 1_Color

I’m pretty excited that Mr. Chad has stopped by to share some Volcano facts with us. Take it away, sir!


1) Although it’s hard to pin down the exact number, there are around 1,500 active and dormant volcanoes on Earth’s surface.  At any given time, there are about 10-20 surface volcanoes erupting out there.  That means right now, while you are reading this!!

2) If based on its height from sea level Mount Everest is the tallest mountain on Earth, but if we base a mountain’s height on the place that it grew from, the Hawaiian volcano Mauna Loa is 9,170 meters tall!  That makes it 322 meters taller than Everest (8,848 meters tall)!

3) Volcanic ash is so much more dangerous than regular ash (from, say, a fireplace) because of its size and shape.  A volcanic ash particle is .001 millimeters wide, making it 100 times smaller than the width of a human hair!?!  As for its shape, fireplace ash is almost circular, while volcanic ash is jagged and barbed.  It ruins electronics and grounds planes on its best days, and crushes houses and forests on its worst!

4) A pyroclastic flow is a cloud of rocks, ashes, and gases erupted from a volcano that can measure up to 1,000 degrees C.  A typical pyroclastic flow races down a volcano‘s side at speeds around 725 kph; this is faster than a cheetah (112 kph), a peregrine falcon (170 kph), and the fastest street legal car (431 kph).

5) The eruption of Krakatoa in 1883 sent clouds of ash over 6,000 km away!  The amount of ash ejected into the sky blocked the sun enough to drop global temperatures for FOUR YEARS!!

demo page 2_3_Color 2

Jon Chad is a cartoonist and illustrator living in Northampton, MA.  He teaches bookmaking and design at the Center for Cartoon Studies and has done illustration work for the Professional Amateur Pinball Association, Highlights Magazine, and the FBI, among many others.  He’s also the author and artist of two other children’s books, Leo Geo and his Miraculous Journey Through the Center of the Earth and Leo Geo and the Cosmic Crisis.


One thought on “Guest Post: Volcanos, by Jon Chad

  1. He lives in my town! How cool is that? And I love FirstSecond, and I think I read Leo Geo before. Thanks for sharing. I might need to figure out how to connect with Jon.
    Kevin (@dogtrax)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s