Hawaii lava flow inspires student innovation

November 17, 2014
In this Nov. 13, 2014 photo provided by the U.S. Geological Survey, lava flow from the Kilauea Volcano that began on June 27 surrounds an outer fence to the Pahoa transfer station in Pahoa, Hawaii. The county says the breakouts don't pose an immediate threat to area residents. (AP Photo/U.S. Geological Survey)

Lava flowing from a Hawaii volcano is inspiring innovative ideas from schoolchildren on how to deal with the effects of the molten rock.

Students from Pahoa's Hawaii Academy of Arts and Science charter school on the Big Island came up with an idea for an air scrubber for volcanic smog, or vog. The scrubber pulls vog out of the air with a fan and neutralizes acidity with a compound similar to baking soda.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports starting Monday, Pahoa's ACE Hardware is selling parts for the scrubber for $100. A scrubber assembled by the students goes for $150.

The students are in a community threatened by the slow-moving lava. The flow entered Pahoa last month and has since burned a house. County civil defense officials say the lava has been sluggish recently.

In this Nov. 13, 2014 photo provided by the U.S. Geological Survey, lava flow from the Kilauea Volcano that began on June 27 approaches the Pahoa transfer station in Pahoa, Hawaii. The county says the breakouts don't pose an immediate threat to area residents. (AP Photo/U.S. Geological Survey)
In this Nov. 13, 2014 photo provided by the U.S. Geological Survey shows a breakout of pahoehoe lava downslope of the house that burned on Monday, Nov. 10, from the lava flow from the Kilauea Volcano that began on June 27 in Pahoa, Hawaii. The county says the breakouts don't pose an immediate threat to area residents. (AP Photo/U.S. Geological Survey)
In this Nov. 13, 2014 photo provided by the U.S. Geological Survey, an HVO geologist encounters a small brush fire from lava flow from the Kilauea Volcano that began on June 27 along the margin of the lobe that was active a few hundred meters upslope of the Pahoa transfer station in Pahoa, Hawaii. (AP Photo/U.S. Geological Survey)
In this Nov. 12, 2014 photo provided by the U.S. Geological Survey, lava flow from the Kilauea Volcano that began on June 27 continues to encroach on the Pahoa Japanese Cemetery, in Pahoa, Hawaii. The county says the breakouts don't pose an immediate threat to area residents. (AP Photo/U.S. Geological Survey)

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rockwolf1000
not rated yet Nov 18, 2014
The first photo seems to indicate that chain link fences work fairly well at holding lava back.

If they were re-designed for that purpose it may save a lot of property and infrastructure.

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